How to Avoid Burnout and Have a Balanced Life?

And outside of LinkedIn, how is your mental health? During the pandemic, issues related to anxiety, stress and other factors gained conversation circles on and off social media. With the change of routine and the forced adaptation to new styles of work - such as the home office itself. Many people began to develop psychological diseases related to work and are trying to find out how to avoid burnout - the syndrome of professional burnout.

What Are the Symptoms of Burnout Syndrome?

The symptoms of burnout syndrome are varied, ranging from physical to psychological, and involve headache; gastrointestinal problems; insomnia; difficulty concentrating; excessive physical and mental fatigue; muscle aches; change in heart rate; high pressure; changes in appetite and feelings of failure, insecurity, incompetence, among others.

This set of symptoms tends to appear in a light form and can intensify over the days. That's why it's important to keep an eye out, seek professional help, and find out how to avoid burnout as quickly as possible.

Burnout: Diagnosis and Treatment

Okay, I noticed that I feel some of the symptoms. But do I really have burnout syndrome? To help identify burnout, psychologists Herbert Freudenberg and Gail North listed the 12 stages of the syndrome. 

A person can go through all the stages - or not - but this list can provide ideas on how to avoid burnout, as well as serve as a good indicator.

1. Compulsion to demonstrate your own worth

The need to show everyone that you know and do your job with excellence.

2. Inability to disconnect from work

Working on weekends without the need to, as well as checking your email box before or after work is a point of attention.

3. Denial of own needs

In this case, adequate food, as well as sleep, becomes secondary and a person with burnout stops eating meals at the correct times and even sleeping, in order to deliver the work in the quality that he/she considers to be good. For her, this is seen as a sacrifice for the greater good. 

4. Escape from conflicts

The person knows that there is something wrong with him, but he avoids facing this situation as much as possible. At this stage, the first physical symptoms may appear.

5. Reinterpretation of personal values

At this stage, the self-esteem of the person who has burnout syndrome is measured only by the results at work. Contact with friends, family, hobbies, and leisure time lose their importance and are seen as secondary.

6. Denial of problems

The professional begins to have more aggressive and sarcastic attitudes, may even become more intolerant of the day-to-day work, and see colleagues as incompetent.

7. Distance from social life

Tasks performed automatically, restricted or non-existent social life. At this stage, the person cannot relax easily and may use drugs or alcoholic beverages to do so. 

8. Behaviour change

People with burnout syndrome can become very different from what they used to be. If the person is happy, he can become apathetic. If you are communicative and have a dynamic profile, you can be more closed off and even be afraid of everyday things, such as meetings. These behavior changes can be easily noticed by colleagues and family members.

9- Depersonalization

The person cannot see their value, nor their own needs. She also fails to notice it in those around her.

10- Internal void

Compulsions become more intense and people may turn to drugs, alcohol, food, games and sex.

11- Depression

Life loses meaning and the person is no longer able to project their future, they feel alone, lost and exhausted. 

Practicing physical activities and having hobbies help prevent burnout

12 - Burnout Syndrome

At this stage, exhaustion becomes fully visible. The person experiences a mental and physical breakdown and may have suicidal thoughts. In this way, the support of colleagues, friends, and family, as well as immediate medical assistance, become necessary. 

Remember that these are just stages that can help a person identify whether or not they are burnout. The diagnosis must be made by health professionals and specialists - psychiatrists and psychologists are the most indicated to identify the syndrome and guide the treatment. 

How to avoid burnout and have a more balanced life?

One of the ways to prevent burnout syndrome is to seek a balance between work and personal life. It may even be a cliché, but the practice of physical activities, as well as healthy eating and a good night's sleep, are essential to work and live well.

Finding friends and family and having a hobby can also help - and a lot - especially in the beginning, when you are suspicious of symptoms and want to find out how to avoid burnout or how to have a quick and significant improvement. Remembering that the syndrome is linked to physical and mental exhaustion, so taking care of both the body and the mind is important.


If you notice that you are not feeling so motivated at work, it is also worth talking to your superiors honestly and, of course, seeking psychological support.