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The Death Road: How Entrepreneurs Can Fight Suicidal Thoughts & Not Give Up Death is not an option when things get tough, there are people to help you

By Priyadarshini Patwa

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Success comes with its baggage and responsibility. If there are highs, there are certainly lows. How one handles it, creates all the difference. There are times when we hear an entrepreneur turning to suicide and it makes us wonder why someone so passionate and smart took this dark path?

An American poet and philosopher Henry David Thoreau said, "It would be some advantage to live a primitive and frontier life, though in the midst of an outward civilization if only to learn what are the gross necessaries of life and what methods have been taken to obtain them." It is sad to see, how we have failed to understand the basics of it.

It often makes us wonder why someone who build something so grand or came up with a new concept decided to take their lives and give up instead of fighting? For those who are pushing themselves beyond a point, you are creating your hell with your thoughts. And congratulations you are acing in it.

Most of the time one gets so used to the feeling of being trapped that they fail to realise that it is the biggest predictor of suicide. To be honest, success and money can't keep depression and dark thoughts at bay. Like any individual, a founder, an investor, an entrepreneur, an executive as prone to melancholy. The rise and fall of the company start defining their identity, which directly impacts how they function.

Did you know 1 in 3 entrepreneurs live with depression? According to a study by Dr Michael Freeman, a clinical professor at the University of California, San Francisco, 30% of all entrepreneurs experience depression.

When we lose our jobs, companies crash, we start associating it as our identity. Failing to understand that it is just one layer of who we are. And walking in deathtrap isn't the solution, there are ways to get out of it and help is available.

Want to End Your Life?

  • Do you want to die or are you just drowning in your problem? Experts say often later is the case. Clear your head, the problem is the issue and taking your life is not the solution.
  • Emotions at this time are the biggest culprit. Take hold of them, let the time pass. Negativity doesn't have to win. Your emotions are getting the best of you but don't act on it. Take time and rethink.
  • Stay away from alcohol and drugs, it only clouds your judgment and makes you regret your decisions.
  • Help is always available in the form of friends, family, partner, doctors, and experts. When thinking to take such an extreme step to reach out to them and surround yourself with people who support you.

Red Signs

  • When you hear someone say "I wish I was dead or I am thinking to die," don't take it lightly. If someone talks about how they plan to die, know it is the red zone.
  • If you know someone with such thought look at what kind of things are they reading, listening and surfing on the internet. If it is anywhere related to depression, being low and lonely, you have your cue.

How to Help?

  • When someone tells you they want to commit suicide, reach out to them. Tell them how you are there to help and ask them what is causing them to thing all this in the first place. Make them feel wanted.
  • Talk to them about medical help and experts who will help them. Offer to accompany them, spend time with them and make appointments for them. Keep a tab on how they are thinking and what is their progress.
  • Don't preach, that's the last thing they want. Keep insisting on the fact of how you are available for them 24/7.
  • Try to remove all dangerous things around them and give them a sense of belonging.
Priyadarshini Patwa

Former Features Editor, Entrepreneur India

Priyadarshini Patwa is the Former Features Editors of Entrepreneur India and hosted an Instagram show every Friday named ‘Lighten Up’, about people from different walks of life and talk about their work and beyond. She handled the lifestyle, features, technology, entertainment segments and was also responsible for the Digital Covers. Previously she has worked with MensXP, a Times of India entity and Deccan Chronicle. 

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