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Emotional Burnout: Determine and Fight It

In the world of social networks and haste people are faced with mental health problems more and more often. And burnout syndrome is a serious threat for a modern person. But society tends to underestimate diseases that “cannot be felt”. It’s hard to admit to them, much less find a way out. Let’s deal with the symptoms of professional burnout and answer the question how to avoid it.

What Is Emotional Burnout

In 2019, the WHO listed the “occupational syndrome” of emotional burnout in the International Classification of Diseases.

According to the WHO, emotional burnout is a mental condition that is caused by chronic stress in the professional field that has not been effectively overcome.

In simple words, it works like this:

  • A person is nervous day in and day out at work, interacts with a lot of people, experiences negative emotions and is under constant stress.
  • These emotions are not compensated by rest and positive experiences, the person plunges into work again and again, and the number of tasks only increases.
  • At a certain point, the inner resource is exhausted and a decline takes place. This is called professional burnout.

Imagine yourself at the gym. You can’t work out all day long without pausing, can you? After a workout, you need sleep, food, and recuperation. It’s the same with emotions: you can’t give them up indefinitely, even to your favorite work. If you don’t replenish the resource with rest and positive emotions, sooner or later you will become exhausted.

Burnout Symptoms

A person in this state finds it difficult to understand what is happening to him. We are used to calling laziness any apathy and unwillingness to work. However, this is not always the case. Observe your condition and understand the reasons for the decline of motivation, because the sooner you admit that you have emotional burnout, the easier it will be to get out of it. By working through your strength and self-blaming you will only aggravate the problem.

Emotional burnout has symptoms:

  • Chronic fatigue that you experience even in the morning after a full night’s sleep.
  • Reduced performance and concentration.
  • You are irritable, positive emotions are rare and fleeting, even pleasant events are not happy.
  • Loss of interest in work, and the completed tasks do not bring satisfaction.
  • There is a feeling that you are constantly busy, while doing nothing useful.
  • Refusal to make decisions, endless postponing of work, shifting the work schedule.
  • Resistance to new things, difficulty getting started.
  • Indifference to mistakes in work.
  • Doubts about one’s strengths and abilities.
  • Reduction of social contacts, unwillingness to see anyone, to make new acquaintances.

Besides these more than unpleasant symptoms, emotional burnout provokes physical ailments: headaches, sleep problems, body aches, exacerbation of chronic diseases. Of course, the symptoms are not always manifested at once, but if you recognize yourself in at least 5 points, it is a reason to think about it.

How to Fight With Emotional Burnout

Every working person can face an emotional burnout syndrome. But people with a great social responsibility (doctors, teachers, and so on) are especially at risk. The more you emotionally express yourself at work, the more nervous you are, the more attentive you should be to your own mental state, because a burnout is not a sudden problem, but an accumulative and logical one.

Fortunately, professional burnout can be prevented and overcome on your own. The way to overcome it is based on three pillars:

  1. Taking care of yourself. How often do you take a day off to the SPA, allocate time for physical exercise and meditation, rest with your favorite TV series or with in Play sports betting, and provide yourself with healthy and delicious food? And after all, medicine has long established that mental well-being begins with the physical. So remember that your body is not iron and requires attention, love and care.
  2. The boundaries of work and rest. In recent years, all the psychologists trumpet it. And no wonder, because one of the main causes of professional burnout is the blurring of the boundaries between leisure and work. When a person returns home but continues to think about his work, he doesn’t leave the psyche a chance to switch and replenish resources. So, it is extremely important to set comfortable boundaries between work and rest and observe them throughout the day. This will help to restore mental strength and happily return to work, not run from it.
  3. Complete rest. Besides work and productivity, there should be room in your life for simple enjoyable activities. Make a list of the things that fill you up, bring positive emotions, and devote time to it every day. 
  4. Understanding the root cause of the crisis. This step may be the most difficult, but its importance cannot be overstated. If nothing is working, your job is boring, and motivation is waning, it may be worth asking yourself: “Am I ready to do this for the next 10 years?” If the answer is no, that’s a reason to think about changing careers. It’s not the easiest decision to make, but sometimes it’s a necessary one. And the less you procrastinate, the sooner you leave the difficulties behind.

Remind yourself who the most important person in your life is and prioritize yourself. After all, work should be enjoyable, and it starts with mental health.

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