August 14, 2023

Am I Burning Out?

Feeling demotivated, tired, or stressed? Is a job or passion project that was once exciting now feeling tedious, and are you finding yourself just waiting for the weekend? These could be signs of burnout, which is the silent killer of motivation. In this article, we aim to help you identify burnout and provide guidance on starting the road to recovery.

Step One: Unveiling Burnout

Burnout isn't just a fleeting experience of stress or fatigue—it's a profound state of depletion that arises from prolonged exposure to stressors. Identifying burnout requires an awareness of both tangible and emotional cues:

While the signs of burnout manifest differently in each individual, the following dimensions provide a sense of what to look for:

  • Physical Manifestations: Chronic weariness, disrupted sleep patterns, persistent headaches, and changes in appetite.
  • Emotional Echoes: Elevated irritability, anxiety, lingering sadness, detachment from surroundings, diminishing sense of accomplishment, and a pervasive feeling of hopelessness.
  • Behavioral Unraveling: Diminished performance, detachment from tasks, distancing oneself from social engagements, and a decline in self-care routines.

Burn-out can manifest as short-temper even outside of work

Step Two: Identifying Your Burnout State

If you haven't come across it yet, there are five stages of burnout listed below. Take a quick look to determine where you currently stand on the spectrum:

  1. Honeymoon Phase: During this stage, individuals are enthusiastic and eager about their work or tasks. They may take on more responsibilities and willingly put in extra effort.
  2. Onset of Stress: As demands increase, individuals start to feel stressed and overwhelmed. They may experience physical symptoms like fatigue, headaches, and sleep disturbances. This stage often involves denying the negative effects of stress.
  3. Chronic Stress: In this stage, stress becomes chronic and pervasive. Individuals might start to feel a sense of cynicism or detachment from their work. They might also withdraw socially and experience a decrease in productivity.
  4. Burnout: At this stage, individuals feel emotionally exhausted and have a sense of helplessness or hopelessness. They might experience a reduced sense of accomplishment and feel disillusioned with their tasks or goals.
  5. Habitual Burnout: In the final stage, burnout becomes chronic and ingrained. It significantly affects the individual's physical and mental health, making it difficult to function effectively. It can lead to serious health issues if not addressed.
burn-out is a spectrum. Where are you currently at?

Step Three: The Road to Recovery

If you're experiencing burnout, it's important to reach out to a professional for help. However, we've gathered a few strategies to help you start feeling better.

Setting Boundaries: A significant component of burnout is the loss of personal time and the activities that help you relax. Even if you're extremely busy, setting boundaries can give you some time to switch off. Establishing both physical and mental boundaries can create moments of relief.

Reflecting on Wins: During times of burnout, positive self-reflection might be challenging but is crucial. Recognizing and reflecting on small victories or progress can help reignite your motivation and allow you to see the outcomes of your hard work.

Creating a Support System: Surround yourself with a supportive network of friends, family, and colleagues who understand your situation and can provide encouragement and advice. Burnout often leads to a sense of isolation, which can worsen the feeling.

If you're looking for more ways to recover from burn-out check out this great article by float

Closing Remarks:

While work might not always be enjoyable and exciting, your mental health shouldn't be compromised, as it could have long-term consequences for your well-being. Burnout often creeps into our lives silently when things get overly busy and stressful, so it's important to take a moment to reflect and identify burnout before it takes control.

We hope this article helps you recognize burnout and supports you in your journey to improve your work-life balance. If you're interested in more articles about work life balance, work technology and productivity follow sign-up for our newsletter in the footer section below.

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