By Rieva Lesonsky

My business is slightly over a year old, but I still consider us a startup—and I love to hear about other people’s startup challenges. I thought I’d share what one of my colleagues told me about her startup experience.

I first met Karen Jashinsky a few years ago when she was studying business at USC (University of Southern California). She has since founded O2 MAX Studio, a fitness studio for teens in Santa Monica, California.

Karen has tons of energy and enthusiasm—when I met her, I knew she was a natural for entrepreneurship. (In fact, her parents are both entrepreneurs.) But even for her, startup wasn’t so simple. The biggest challenge? Stress. (Sound familiar?) Other challenges: Not enough time, and not enough money.

But all those problems pale in comparison to the benefits of being an entrepreneur. For Karen, those are: Defining your own destiny, making your own rules, building something that belongs to you alone, making a difference and being able to pick who you work with.
What do you love most about being an entrepreneur? Write it down, put it on your bulletin board and look at it to remind you, when times get tough, what it’s all about.