Everyone faces a certain amount of stress in their daily lives. But when that stress starts to feel overwhelming, and you can’t seem to shake it, it can lead to burnout.
Burnout is defined as a state of physical, emotional, and mental exhaustion. It can lead to feelings of exhaustion, detachment, and a sense of ineffectiveness. It can also harm your physical health and increase your risk for illness.
If you’re struggling to keep up with the demands of your life, here are six signs that you may be burnt out:
Do You Feel Exhausted All the Time?
One of the primary signs of burnout is feeling exhausted all the time. This isn’t just the occasional sleepiness from a late night or a busy week. It’s deep, overwhelming fatigue that doesn’t go away with rest.
You may find that you can’t muster up the energy to do things you usually enjoy. Or you may struggle to get out of bed in the morning. This type of exhaustion can have a major impact on your work, your relationships, and your overall well-being.
Do You Feel Detached or Cynical?
When you’re burnt out, it’s common to start feeling disengaged from yourself and the people and things around you. You may find yourself being more critical and negative. You might lash out at loved ones or overreact to minor frustrations.
You may feel like you just can’t muster up the energy to care.
This can negatively impact your personal relationships as you may withdraw from friends and family. And at work, you may feel like your job is pointless or that you can’t make a difference.
Do You Feel Like You’re Not Good Enough?
Another common sign of burnout is feeling like you’re not good enough. This can manifest as imposter syndrome—the belief that you’re not qualified or capable of doing your job.
You may find yourself doubting your effectiveness and abilities and questioning your worth. This can lead to decreased productivity and feeling stuck in a rut.
Do You Have Trouble Concentrating?
When you’re burnt out, it will be hard to focus on anything. Your mind may feel foggy, and it may be difficult to concentrate on tasks. You’ll likely find yourself making more mistakes than usual, missing deadlines, and forgetting important details.
This can be frustrating and may lead to even more stress as you try to catch up. It can also diminish your quality of life as you may have trouble enjoying leisure activities or spending time with loved ones.
Do You Feel Irritable, Depressed, or Anxious?
You may find yourself feeling on edge, impatient, or easily frustrated. And you may have difficulty relaxing or sleeping. This can further compound the effects of burnout, leading to a downward spiral.
You may also experience symptoms of depression or anxiety, such as low mood, difficulty eating or sleeping, and hopelessness.
Do You Have Any Physical Symptoms?
Burnout can also take a toll on your physical health. You may find yourself getting sick more often, or you may have trouble recovering from illness. This is because chronic stress can weaken your immune system.
Burnout may also manifest as headaches, gastrointestinal issues, or chronic pain. And if it persists for longer, stress and burnout can increase your risk of heart disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other chronic health conditions.
How To Restore Balance and Avoid Burnout
If you’re struggling with burnout, it’s important to take steps to restore balance in your life. This may include taking breaks, setting boundaries, and learning to say no.
It’s also important to find healthy ways to cope with stress. A common mistake people make is turning to unhealthy coping mechanisms, such as drinking alcohol or using recreational drugs. This will only make your problems worse in the long run.
Instead, try to find healthy outlets for stress, such as creative art, exercise, journaling, or spending time in nature.
If you’re struggling to cope with burnout on your own, it’s essential to seek professional help. A therapist can help you identify the root causes of your burnout and develop a plan to rejuvenate and repair yourself.