Burnout is defined as “a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. It occurs when you feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and unable to meet constant demands. ” For post-secondary students, especially when faced with online classes, a global pandemic and all of the pressures and struggles that come with it, burnout is a real risk that students need to keep an eye out for. It can negatively affect your academics, your job and your social life. While it is not a mental illness, burnout can also lead to physical and mental health issues like high blood pressure, digestive problems and depression.
Recovery from burnout looks different for everyone, but it’s more than taking a personal day or getting an extension on an assignment. It’s important to recognize burnout and take action before it gets too severe.
Recognize the Symptoms
- An increasingly cynical and negative outlook
- Decreased satisfaction and sense of accomplishment
- Withdrawing from responsibilities.
- Poor performance at school or work
- Lack of motivation
- Reduced creativity
- Unexplained headaches and stomach aches
It’s so important to take action against burnout before it seriously impacts your life. Try these tips for preventing and managing the symptoms of burnout. If things worsen, or if nothing helps, consult a mental health professional because your symptoms could be a sign of something else.
- Talk to your professors or supervisor about what you’re experiencing and ask if they can help you cope
- Reach out to your friends and family for support
- Maintain a good school-life or work-life balance
- Set aside time for yourself
- Get enough sleep
- Take care of your physical health