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Navigating Year-End Anxieties: A Guide for Entrepreneurs 

Entrepreneurs often find themselves caught in a whirlwind of emotions as the year draws to a close. While the holiday season brings joy and reflection, it also tends to usher in year-end anxieties, especially for those driving their businesses forward. For many entrepreneurs, this time of year can be a mix of accomplishments, challenges, and uncertainties that can trigger stress and apprehension. Understanding and addressing these anxieties is crucial to ending the year positively and gearing up for what lies ahead. 

Reflecting on Achievements and Setbacks 

The end of the year naturally prompts entrepreneurs to assess their progress. Celebrating achievements is essential, but it’s equally crucial to acknowledge setbacks and unmet goals. Reflecting on these aspects can be a double-edged sword, triggering pride in accomplishments while potentially fueling anxiety about unfulfilled expectations. 

Tip: Create a comprehensive list of accomplishments and challenges throughout the year. This reflection can provide valuable insights into what worked well and what needs improvement in the upcoming year. 

Financial Pressures and Year-End Targets 

Financial concerns often weigh heavily on entrepreneurs during this time. Meeting year-end targets, balancing budgets, and preparing for tax season can amplify stress levels. The pressure to finish the year on a profitable note may intensify anxieties, especially for businesses experiencing a slow period or unexpected financial hurdles. 

Tip: Conduct a thorough financial review, engage with a financial advisor if necessary, and strategize ways to manage cash flow. Consider seeking professional advice to optimize tax strategies and plan for the upcoming fiscal year. 

Future Uncertainties and Planning Ahead 

The turn of the year inevitably brings thoughts about the future. Entrepreneurs may feel anxious about uncertainties, market shifts, evolving consumer behaviour, or industry changes. This uncertainty can cast a shadow over the excitement of future opportunities. 

Tip: While uncertainties are part of the entrepreneurial journey, creating a flexible and adaptive business plan helps to reduce uncertainties. Focus on short-term achievable goals while keeping the long-term vision intact and engage with mentors or industry experts to gain insights and perspectives on upcoming trends and challenges. 

Balancing Work and Personal Life 

The hustle and bustle of entrepreneurship often blur the lines between personal and professional life. Year-end pressures can exacerbate this, leaving entrepreneurs feeling burnt out and disconnected from their personal lives. 

Tip: Prioritize self-care and set boundaries; allocate specific time for relaxation, family, and hobbies; and embrace delegation and time-management techniques to maintain a healthy work-life balance. 

Embracing a Positive Mindset 

Amidst these anxieties, maintaining a positive mindset is essential. Celebrate successes, learn from challenges, and approach the upcoming year with optimism. Remember, setbacks and uncertainties are opportunities for growth and innovation. 

Tip: Practice gratitude by acknowledging the lessons learned and the support received throughout the year. Engage in mindfulness exercises or meditation to stay grounded and focused. 

Year-end anxieties are common among entrepreneurs, but they need not overshadow the achievements and possibilities that lie ahead. By acknowledging these feelings, reflecting on the past year, and strategically planning for the future, entrepreneurs can navigate this period with resilience and purpose. Embracing a balanced approach and maintaining a positive mindset can pave the way for a prosperous and fulfilling year. 

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Rob G.C. Sobey

Board Member

Rob G.C. Sobey is a corporate director. Mr. Sobey was the President & Chief Executive Officer of Lawton’s Drug Stores Limited from 2006 until his retirement in 2014 after 25 years with Sobeys. He serves as a director of SeaFort Capital and the Institute of Corporate Directors. Mr. Sobey is Chair of the Sobey Art Foundation, a member of the Queen’s Smith School of Business Advisory Board and serves on several foundation and not-for-profit boards. For his work as an Honorary Colonel of the Canadian Army, Mr. Sobey received a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. He holds an undergraduate from Queen’s University, a Master of Business Administration from Babson College, and the ICD.D designation.

Denburk Reid

Board Member

Denburk Reid is the founder of Montreal Community Care Foundation (MCCF). Its mission is to empower youth by developing their leadership skills by using programs, workshops, and events, and by building bridges between communities. As the founder of MCCF, he beliefs that the youth hold the key to Montreal’s future and over the past eight (8) years, its programs have helped hundreds of Montreal youth stay on track, perform community services as well as set and achieve academic and life goals. The organization seeks to empower youth to become engaged citizens and leaders in their homes, schools, and communities. For the past five (5) years, MCCF celebrates and promotes community engagement across Montreal through the Montreal Community Cares Awards.

Along with his role as the founder of MCCF, Mr. Reid is the Founder of Red Rush Basketball & Red Rush Basketball Leadership. He has a passion for empowering youth and meeting them where they are lends to a successful outcome.

Abdikhier Ahmed​

Board Member

Mr. Ahmed is a recognized community leader in the non-profit sector with specializations in immigration and refugee resettlement, poverty reduction, and community empowerment. A dynamic, highly motivated individual with extensive experience in program development and delivery, providing strategic visioning and leadership. Over 10 years’ experience managing programs for non-profit organizations and working with communities and people from diverse socio-economic and cultural backgrounds both locally as well as internationally. Fluently multi-lingual: speaks and writes English, Swahili, Somali and basic Arabic. This experience help guide Mr. Ahmed when he was in the role of Director of Policy at the Office of Canada’s Minister of Families, Children and Social Development.

Mr. Ahmed is currently the Executive Director of Aurora Family Therapy Centre. Aurora is a progressive, non-profit family therapy centre that offers family therapy on a sliding scale; sees clients through services funded by Manitoba Department of Families and Department of Justice; provides community building groups for Newcomers to Canada; hosts a Psycho-Social Settlement Needs Assessment program for incoming refugees; provides summer youth programming for many newcomer communities; supports its own staff and other agencies through vicarious trauma and resilience programming; develops supportive relationships with community partners, and engages in advocacy for accessible community-based therapy services for all. Aurora is in the process of becoming a Centre of Excellence in providing cross cultural therapy from a systemic lens with a special focus on psychological trauma & recovery and community development.