5 Myths About Burnout You Need To Understand [And The Truth Behind Burnout]

Last Update on September 22, 2021 : Published on September 22, 2021
Myths About Burnout

It’s the dreaded Monday morning but you don’t have the energy to feel the dread? Are you overworking yourself so much that you don’t have enough time for yourself or your family? Have you forgotten what it feels like to smile and relax?

Are any of these questions resonating with you? If yes, then there’s a slight chance that you’re struggling with early signs of burnout.

Burnout is a reaction to work-related stress or chronic stress that can eventually lead your overall health and wellness to decline. That, in turn, can take a heavy toll on your work and personal life.

If you’ve ever experienced burnout, then you’ve struggled with getting help at some point in your life, right? Have you ever wondered why others dismiss burnout as nothing more than just work stress?

More often than not, this dismissal is because of the many myths about burnout out there. These myths keep appearing again and again with no morsel of truth behind them.

Don’t fret! In this blog, I’ll be debunking 5 myths about burnout and will be explaining the truth about burnout. Let’s take a look at these burnout myths:

Debunking 5 Myths About Burnout

Myth #1: Burnout Means You Can’t Handle Stress

This is probably one of the most prevalent myths about burnout that I’ve heard. When you’re exhausted and overwhelmed, it’s easy to become cynical and stressed. It can even make you question your competence.

If your job is stressing you out, then you’re more likely to experience burnout. Although, job stress is only linked to more burnout possibilities when you feel like you’re not making a significant difference in your line of work.

When you’re stressed, your brains release chemicals that push us to seek company. This response can be called “tend and befriend” and is coined by a UCLA psychologist. Studies have found that even people struggling with burnout are more likely to help others remain healthy. Burnout increases your ability to take care of others.

 Quite the opposite of the “myth”, right?

Myth #2: Dealing With Burnout Means You Need A Major Life Change

When you’re dealing with burnout, you might even think about changing your job as an alternative to deal with your symptoms, correct? I fear that’s not the right decision.

Even if you’re struggling with burnout, it doesn’t mean you love your job a little less. All you need to do is make some strong adjustments. You can do this by setting healthy work boundaries, dividing your time between work, social, and private life, and so on.

One of the best techniques to help prevent job burnout is to focus your energy on reshaping your job to better adjust to your needs. Take some time to reevaluate your passion, your strengths, and your weaknesses and think of new ways you can alter your job to your needs.

Remember, you don’t need to make any major life changes if you don’t have to. Tweaking your needs and adjusting your priorities can help!

Myth #3: Others Can’t Know About Your Burnout

People notice whether you openly speak about your problem or not. The emotional exhaustion, the cynicism, the lack of motivation, and the lack of passion are all clear signs of burnout and, honestly, quite noticeable too.

If you find yourself snapping at your coworker or your loved ones or find yourself spending more time at work than with others, keep in mind, your burnout won’t stay a secret for long.

And you know what? It’s okay to let others know that you’re stressed and emotionally exhausted. Your mental health is not something that should be dismissed. If your signs of burnout are ruining your mental and emotional peace, then it’s okay to let your boss or a supervisor you trust know that you need a break.

One of the best ways to get help is to get support from others, whether they be your colleagues, your boss, your friend, your partner, or your therapist. These people can help you but keeping your burnout a secret will not help you.

Also Read: How To Talk To Your Boss About Your Mental Health Struggles

Myth #4: A Vacation Is A Cure To Your Burnout

Okay, let’s be frank. If you’ve shared your burnout experience with your partner or your boss even, then they would have suggested that you take a day off or go on a relaxing vacation to relieve stress, am I right?

Well, I may be right but the ones saying all you need is a vacation or a day off – well, they aren’t.

There is a huge difference between your day-to-day stressors and your burnout symptoms. Suggesting a quick stress relief will not help relieve the symptoms of burnout. Doing so will only minimize your problem and your plea for help.

Taking a quick vacation cannot cure your burnout. And, indeed, a weekend off or a relaxing vacation might temporarily relieve stress, but it won’t help in the long run. To deal and prevent burnout, you need to get professional help. If you don’t seek the help you need, then there is a possibility that your burnout symptoms will return after a few weeks.

Myth #5: If You’re Feeling Burnout, It Means You’re Depressed

Burnout and depression do go hand in hand but it does not mean that burnout equals depression. One of the minor causes of burnout can be depression but not necessarily and not always. Other factors are also responsible.

Burnout can be referred to as a “gateway condition” as it often leaves the door open for other issues. If I experience low motivation during my burnout, it doesn’t mean that I’m also experiencing depression. You might even experience physical burnout symptoms but not depression.

Please remember, burnout is a complex yet serious condition that may take time to heal from but with the right help and strategies, it can be achieved.

Learning the truth about burnout is an important part of it!

When Passion Leads To Burnout?

When passion leads to burnout, there are some things you can do to prevent further suffering:

  • Remember to set boundaries. It’s okay to say NO when you can’t help others. It might be selfish but keep in mind, self-care is important.
  • If you’re constantly exhausted and feel zero passion, then take some time to rekindle with yourself and get to know yourself better, again. Explore different hobbies and interests and find the one that you enjoy.
  • Sometimes having too many responsibilities can also be a reason for your passion turning into burnout. Take some time off of your responsibilities or learn to delegate them to others.
  • If your job is the only reason that is causing you stress, then try reconsidering your work. Talk to a career counselor and see if you’re compatible with your job requirements or do you see a change coming.
  • Lastly, do not hesitate to ask for help! Getting professional help in dealing with your burnout can help not only restore your mental health but can also help you restore your passion.

Writer’s Thoughts

“Burnout exists because we’ve made rest a reward rather than a right.” – Juliet C Obodo

Isn’t this true, though? Burnout only exists when we treat our downtime as a reward and not as something we deserve. Let’s take a moment to understand how burnout is affecting our lives (not only professional but personal too).

When you’re burned out, you’re neither able to focus on your work nor with your family and friends. What can we do to change that?

The first step is to understand the truth behind burnout and debunking the myths about burnout. And when your passion turns to burnout, take some time to reflect on what you need to change in your life and get the help you need from a professional counselor or a life coach.

I hope the above myths and truth about burnout will help you. For more information, you can always contact us at info@calmsage.com or DM us on social media. If you feel like we missed something, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!

Take Care!

About The Author

Swarnakshi Sharma
Swarnakshi Sharma

Swarnakshi is a content writer at Calm sage, who believes in a healthier lifestyle for mind and body. A fighter and survivor of depression, she strives to reach and help spread awareness on ending the stigma surrounding mental health issues. A spiritual person at heart, she believes in destiny and the power of Self. She is an avid reader and writer and likes to spend her free time baking and learning about world cultures.

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