48% of home business owners suffer from loneliness

While majority of home business owners enjoy freedom of working hours and "peace and quiet", many can't cope with "professional isolation"

Almost 50% of home-based business owners say they often suffer from loneliness because of too much time spent in their own company with no one to talk to about their business concerns, research from AXA Insurance reports today.

See also: Working from home – A survival guide

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While the majority (83%) of home-based entrepreneurs surveyed said they started a home business to set their own working hours and benefit from “peace and quiet”, once they made the switch to home working, many said they had experienced “professional isolation”, loneliness, and worked “punishing hours”.

Only 14% of home business owners said they were able to discuss their business worries with family and friends, and 62% said that they often found themselves working anti-social hours.

However, the study found the longer business owners work from home, the happier they become – with levels of loneliness decreasing over time.

The study also suggested key ways to for home-based business owners to avoid loneliness and these included going out for lunch, working ‘typical’ office hours, and occasionally exercising the right to ‘skive off’.

Darrell Sanson, AXA Business Insurance managing director, said of the research:

“When starting a home business, it’s common to have a business plan.

“Few people plan a strategy for happiness though. The idea isn’t as bizarre as it sounds. Once you venture out on your own, your business will depend wholly on your well-being. The good news is that people do become happier the longer they work at home.”

To find out how to achieve happiness as a home-based business owner, take a look at our guides on home-based businesses.

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