Being exhausted is a universal experience in our world these days. There are just so many things that can cause us to be stressed, demotivated, and just constantly tired no matter how much rest we get. This is what’s often called burnout.
It may not seem like it, but burnout has a lot of negative impacts on our health. As such, we must make an effort to take care of ourselves so we don’t succumb to its impact.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that 1 in 4 adults will experience burnout at some point. WHO has also added burnout, which it has defined as “chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed.” Its three main symptom areas are lack of energy and exhaustion, a sense of detachment, a bad attitude towards one’s job, and decreased work performance.
What are some early signs of burnout?
Decreased work motivation
This is when you become more cynical, resentful, and pessimistic about work due to the stress and frustration that has been piling up on yourself every day. This is when most people also begin to distance themselves from everything and dread even the idea of going to work.
If you feel like you lack control over everything, or feel that you are not rewarded properly for the work you do, then this may contribute to this feeling.
With a decrease in motivation also comes decreased productivity at work. We will find it more difficult to accomplish the tasks we usually do on time or to meet deadlines, and we find it hard to even focus on simple tasks.
The built-up stress literally impacts our brain’s cognitive function so the more stressed you are at work, the more difficult it is for you to manage new stimuli and stressors that you may encounter.
This type of exhaustion is different from simply being tired. Instead, this is the feeling of being constantly exhausted both mentally and physically. You also feel more easily overwhelmed emotionally and lack energy to do things you used to do easily.
It’s possible for us to become so stressed that it affects the quality of sleep we get every night. This may manifest in the form of insomnia and finding it difficult to fall asleep or waking up too early with little sleep all the time.
Signs of physical exhaustion
Headaches, tension, back pain, and migraines are some of the most common signs and symptoms of chronic stress related to feeling burnt out. So if you’re feeling these symptoms, then you may indeed be experiencing a burnout.
With constant stress related to feeling burnt out, feelings of worry and anxiety also start to arise within ourselves. This may stop once you go home, but it gets triggered whenever you are reminded of work once again. Studies have shown that this may be linked to depressive symptoms and anxiety.
Mood swings, irritability, and aggressiveness may arise with burnout, so you better watch out if you’re feeling more cranky than usual. This is because stress and burnout can affect the amygdala of our brain which is associated with emotional distress.
Depression and burnout
Depression and burnout may have overlapping symptoms with each other such as loss of interest in things, cognitive and physical symptoms, and a sense of helplessness.
However, unlike burnout, depression makes the sufferer feel dread and worry about every aspect of life, not just their jobs. If you want to know which one you are experiencing, then consulting a mental health professional may be the best.
Burnout is something that a lot of us have to face in our everyday lives. As such, there is absolutely no shame in asking help for to get it treated so we can feel better.
Another way or strategy to treat burnout is to simply practice self-care. This can include things such as getting a better diet, exercising, getting enough sleep, and being with the people we love. Remember that it’s okay to feel tired sometimes, however, getting support around how to manage your stress, and your lifestyle, and keep you in optimal health so that stress and burnout don’t impact your health is vitally important.
If you want to keep yourself in optimal health get in touch today and find out more about our optimal health services here.