The answer in a recent report might surprise you

According to the inaugural Bank of America Small Business Owner Report, managing the ongoing success of their business creates more stress for small business owners than any other aspect of their lives.

The report is based on a nationally representative sample of 1,000 small business owners in the United States with annual revenue between $100,000 and $4,999,999 and employing between two and 99 employees. In addition, 300 small business owners were surveyed in nine target markets, including New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. It's worth noting that 74% of small business owners are between the ages of 24 and 54, and 42% are women. Among younger business owners (18-34), 60% are women

Stress Scorecard

The survey found that maintaining a small business causes owners:

  • Twice as much stress as maintaining a healthy relationship with a spouse or partner
  • Nearly three times as much stress as raising children
  • More than four times as much stress as managing their own personal finances.

A substantial number of small business owners regularly forego free time (57%) and exercise (37%) in order to manage their business.