Quote: “To the brain, social pain feels almost exactly like physical pain.”
In this episode of the Asia Tech Podcast, Michael Waitze is joined by Krystal Choo, Executive Director and Founder of Thrive Hours – a professional training and coaching company dedicated to driving success by leveraging well-being.
Michael and Krystal dug deeper into the psyche of a startup founder and discussed the impacts of loneliness and isolation, the reasons contributing to that feeling, and different ways to mitigate that.
Connecting In a Disconnected World
In a world where we are more connected than we’ve ever been, so many are still struggling with what is considered the next big public health crisis – loneliness and isolation.
Krystal Choo, an expert in applied neuropsychology, reflected on this issue of loneliness and isolation, saying that these experiences aren’t unique and that there’s a lot more “suffering and pain in foundership” than we may think.
This struggle isn’t uncommon and it certainly isn’t rare in the world of founders. The combination of working in a high-intensity and fast-paced environment, and keeping up the happy-go-lucky facade, can often be tough.
Loneliness and isolation have evidently become a global phenomenon, affecting people of all backgrounds and ages. Krystal shared how feeling lonely, unsupported, and isolated can affect your performance and highlighted the importance of creating reciprocal relationships.
Warning Signals of Isolation
People were not made to be solitary creatures, so the absence of social interactions and meaningful relationships ultimately leads us down an avalanche of mental health issues.
From impaired physical immunity, impaired executive functions, and an accelerated cognitive decline, Krystal discussed how isolation and loneliness can heighten a variety of health risks as much as smoking does, and can even increase premature death.
Krystal then shared her struggle during her deteriorating mental, emotional and physical health, and the consequences of trying to ‘biohack’ your way to success with drugs.
The Emotional Traffic Lights
In this fast-paced world, people can be scared to slow down because they fear they’ll get left behind in the dust. But just like a car, without proper repairs and maintenance, you’ll eventually have to pay the consequences.
While risk assessments are important in any project, being self-aware of your mental health is just as significant. Krystal introduced the Traffic Light framework to monitor emotions, and explains how this traffic light framework can provide insights to the different stages of your emotions; like what do you do when you’re happy or when you’re sad. This plan helps you focus on how to move forward from the traffic light color you are on.
To learn more about the importance of feeling understood and heard in the isolating world of startup founders, as well as the different methods of regulating your emotions for your well-being, listen to this episode of the Asia Tech podcast today.