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This article was published on December 3, 2020


Being an entrepreneur is stressful — here’s how I unwind

Enjoy the new series!

Being an entrepreneur is stressful — here’s how I unwind
Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten
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Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten

CEO and co-founder, TNW

Boris is a serial entrepreneur who founded not only TNW, but also V3 Redirect Services (sold), HubHop Wireless Internet Provider (sold), and Boris is a serial entrepreneur who founded not only TNW, but also V3 Redirect Services (sold), HubHop Wireless Internet Provider (sold), and pr.co. Boris is very active on Twitter as @Boris and Instagram: @Boris.

Boris is the wise ol’ CEO of TNW who writes a weekly column on everything about being an entrepreneur in tech — from managing stress to embracing awkwardness. You can get his musings straight to your inbox by signing up for his newsletter!

No matter what job you have or what life you lead, there will always be stress. If you don’t have money worries, you’ll have kids-worries. If you have a partner, you’ll have relationship-stress, and if you’re alone, maybe that stresses you out. Life is stressful and uncertain, and that’s part of what makes it fun.

Nerves before a performance are healthy, but work stress shouldn’t overtake your life. I know you’ve heard this a million times before, but never underestimate the importance of tuning out and putting some distance between you and your job. Over the years, I’ve developed a wide variety of ways to reduce anxiety or simply take my mind off work for a bit, and have often shared my learnings here.

I’ve also learned that most people will have interesting ways of dealing with their own stress levels, and I’ve made it a habit to ask about that. The more successful and relaxed someone seems, the more interested I become in finding out what stresses them out and how they deal with that.

The logical next step was to start recording these conversations for your information and entertainment. Together with Polestar — who graciously picked up the bill for producing this — I made a series of video interviews, titled Unwind with Boris. In the series, I interview entrepreneurs and business leaders about their jobs, the future of tech, what stresses them out, and how they unwind from work.

What I loved about these chats is that they all took place in different settings, depending on where the interviewee felt the most at home.  So far, I’ve been kitesurfing with Philips CIO Jeroen Tas, raced electric carts with Juuve CEO Niki Sie, and will soon join a boxing match with Roebyem Anders, co-founder of Sungevity.

The first episode went live today, and it’s by far the hardest one to watch for me. It’s the pilot and instead of interviewing someone else, I’m the one being interviewed. We filmed this at my private cabin in the Vinkeveense Plassen, where I don’t normally invite guests over. It’s where I go to catch crayfish, work on my woodworking projects, occasionally fall out of my boat, and just sit and watch the sun go down in peace. The cabin has limited electricity and no toilet, but I couldn’t be happier with it.

You can watch the whole video below. I can promise you the next episodes will only get better (and less awkward for me). They’ll be published on thenextweb.com and our social channels. Enjoy and unwind!

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