Life is always hectic. There are still a lot of things to be done every single day and a lot of things to think about and give focus on. Because of this, people tend to forget to focus on themselves without realizing that slowly, they are getting tired, drained, and as therapist calls it, burnt out.
“There can be a visceral sense of your nerves being ‘fried’ or ‘burnt,’ which can include headache, fatigue, irritability, sensory sensitivity,” accordingt to clinical psychologist Jessica Michaelson, PsyD.
Being burnt out affects everyone. You may be an employee or a student, someone with a strong personality or not; having emotional baggage or prolonged stress with you can eventually cause this condition. Besides affecting a person emotionally and mentally, it can also affect a person physically. Nowadays, mostly affected by this condition are students, most specifically college students.
What Is Burnout?
In an article by Concorde Colleges, burnout was explained as an “emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion that is caused by ongoing stress.” Additionally, Rhonda Gillylan, Student Services Advisor at Concorde Tampa, said that this could be seen when someone is “feeling overwhelmed and unable to meet constant demands.” This state can develop along the way needing further treatment if neglected.
“Often we beat ourselves up for feeling ‘done’ with something, as if it’s a moral failure, so we don’t honor the wisdom of our bodies’ cues,” said clinical psychologist Jessica Michaelson, PsyD. “Being in a chronic state of crisis makes us sick.”
Like other medical conditions, burnout also has its signs and symptoms people should look out for. It has physical and emotional symptoms.
Physical symptoms include:
- Feeling tired and drained
- Having illness due to lower immunity
- Frequent headaches and muscle pains
- Change in appetite and sleeping patterns
Emotional symptoms include:
- Self-doubt and sense of failure
- Feeling defeated and trapped
- Feeling alone and losing motivation
- Always have a negative outlook
- Doesn’t have the feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment
- Doesn’t want responsibility and often procrastinates
- Using food, drugs, and alcohol to cope
- Skipping work or school
Causes Of Burn Out
- Pressure and Expectations
These two are at the top of the list of the causes for college burnout. Graduating with honors entails, one should be entirely equipped in handling the hurdles of taking up a degree. It worsens in the long run when parents, relatives, close friends, and even former teachers express their opinions on how you should be faring academically, socially, and emotionally.
On the other hand, starting as an average student may mean lesser expectations, but does not complete the whole picture. Some see college as a chance to start anew, so failing might feel disconcerting if one fails to meet expectations. More importantly, college is labeled as the period where one determines what career he/she should pursue. Trying to meet standards, in the long run, may result in burnout.
Moving into a new environment where people, academics, and the façade are different are essential adjustments for someone getting in college. It is also crucial to remember this occurs not just to college students in their first year. The feeling of isolation results in a lack of confidence and trust in making friends. It affects ‘one’s approach towards finishing a degree that is supposed to develop you as a whole.
- Fitting In
This is a reaction to the dreaded concept of isolation. However, this may not be a solution to it. Constantly trying to project an image of someone that you are not is a tiring process. College life is a hodgepodge of factors that students must handle. Having to try to fit in is an added stress to the already-stressful pursuit of finishing a degree.
Burn Out And Therapy
“Burnout is a physiological consequence of pushing yourself beyond your physical and emotional limits—sustained stress/fight or flight response—for too long,” said Brandon Santan, PhD, LPC-MHSP.
There is no particular therapy for all and that the treatment itself is confidential. However, there are ways you can use to prevent college burnout. First and foremost, you should acknowledge if you already feel the symptoms of burnout. By stepping in early, you will be able to give yourself the chance to breathe and think lighter than doing it under pressure and stress.
Next would be learning how to say no. It is evident that during ‘one’s college years, students tend to fit in with peers but if you think some of the things are not really who you are – ‘it’s okay to say no. Do not force yourself to like something that will exhaust you in the long run.
Most importantly, rest. Don’t forget that you need enough sleep and rest too. College life can be tiring. You need to deal with school, friends, even love life for that matter but don’t forget, at the end of the day, your body needs to recharge. With the right amount of sleep, you will be more productive, and your thoughts will be more precise.
Experiencing college burnout is becoming more common these days, and it is never a shame to seek therapy and other forms of treatment if this will help. Remember, it is always a must to breathe and set our minds to what our goals are.