Unfortunately, I suffer from burn out pretty frequently because I have a terrible habit of over-working myself. Why? I have no idea. But, I do know that lots of people do the same thing. We work ourselves into the ground and then wonder why we are so irritable, depressed or stressed out. Well, if you're one of those people who are wondering, "am I getting burnt out?" the answer is probably: yes.
How can you tell? Below is a list of signs that you're starting to get burnt out. And, as a bonus there are also remedies included so you can work on getting back on track.
Neglecting Your Health
Stress caused by working too much, or spending too much of your time worrying about work, can eventually cause health problems like depression, heart problems, weight gain and sometimes even digestive issues. Self-medication, such as binge drinking, drug use, and over-eating is also a symptom of burn out.
How can you fix this? For starters, being more aware of the things you're eating and drinking can help. Getting a gym membership and working out (even just a little bit) during lunch break or before/after work can also help relieve stress and keep you active. Like Elle Woods said, endorphins make you happy. Don't underestimate the power of a good workout regimen.
Lack Of Interest In Things That Used To Bring You Joy
When experiencing burnout, it can feel like everything is crushing around you. All the stress has enveloped your brain and even something as simple as reading a book, which may have once made you happy, no longer has the same delightful appeal. It happens to all of us at some time or another, and I'd say the best way to remedy this is to force yourself to do something that used to make you happy. Sticking with the book example, I'd recommend finding a book you know you've wanted to read (but haven't gotten around to) and dedicating at least a few hours to reading. Find yourself a cozy corner, or go to the beach, or even just find somewhere quiet, and force yourself to read. If it's something you used to love before burnout, you'll find yourself falling back in love with it in no time.
Let's be fair, we all get exhausted balancing work life, home life, school (if you're in school) and everything else that life barrels our way. It happens. Prolonged exhaustion caused by burnout is a whole new level, though, and it can feel like it's never-ending. This kind of exhaustion can lead to depression, anxiety and poor work performance. But, thankfully the fix is relatively easy. To start - get more sleep! If you're burning out then you're probably not sleeping enough anyway and it's presenting itself through exhaustion. According to Forbes, "having fewer than six hours of sleep per night is a major risk factor for burnout, not least because poor sleep can have negative effects on your job performance and productivity". So, relax and make sure you're getting enough sleep. It'll help in the long run, even if you think "I don't have time for sleep!"
Becoming Easily Frustrated Or Feeling More Negative Emotions Than Usual
Everyone has their off days. You know the days when everything is making you mad or upset and nothing seems to go right. That's fine and it happens to the best of us, but it's important to recognize when it's just an off day or something deeper. When these "off" days start happening more frequently, it may be time to consider that you are probably suffering from burn out. No sweat! Taking some time for yourself and using techniques mentioned in the other bullets can help this. Take a deep breath and remind yourself how far you've come. It's just one day. Nothing is ever as bad as it seems. Sometimes you just need to reset your mind and get back on a more optimistic path.
Job Performance Decline
It's no secret that when people are suffering from burn out that they actually start becoming less good at their jobs. The constant exhaustion, fatigue, stress and mental torment can take a huge toll on your work life. Take a step back and look at your job performance. Is it a slump or has it been getting worse over time? If it's been gradually decreasing over time, it's probably burnout. Sometimes, just taking a day or two off can reset this. Not to mention, getting some more sleep and practicing healthy habits in your life can also help. It's all about balance.
Problems With Friends, Family or Loved Ones
Are you arguing more with the people close to you? Do you just not care as much about the people in your life lately (for example, tuning them out when they're around or simply not seeing them as often)? Then you're probably suffering from burnout. Learn to recognize how you're acting towards the people around you. Don't let your job interfere with your personal life, and vice versa.
Most importantly, stay attuned to what's happening in your life. If something is changing for the worse, then take measures to fix it. Don't let a job or over-working cause you to lose yourself or those who are closest to you. Figure out when enough is enough and take the time to do what's best for you and your life in the long run. Becoming burnt out isn't "cool" or something to admire. It's not a good aesthetic to try and attain. Just do what's best for you.