Enthusiasm at work is always a good thing but in many cases, it can lead to burn out.  Unfortunately, many people are taken unawares and sometimes depression is erroneously fingered as the cause of the common burnout.

When ignored, burnout can lead to problems at work, negatively affect your relationships with colleagues and negatively affect your health. Burnout can cause long-term chemical changes in your body that remain even after you feel better, making you more susceptible to other illnesses like colds and flu. This piece takes a look at the tell-tale signs you should watch out for.

Excess cynicism

If you find yourself raining on other people’s parade more often than normal, your body is executing a stress coping mechanism. Excess sarcasm and mocking others are signs you are overstressed.


If you find yourself in a situation where panicking and never returning looks seems like the best option to you, you are dealing with what experts refer to as “worn out burn out”.  It is not natural that you are always looking for excuses to avoid certain tasks or always looking for excuses to completely stay off work from your once ideal job.

Lack of attention to details

Are you missing more deadlines than usual? Are you forgetting more meetings? A sudden lack of attention to details is a warning sign of burnout.  If you notice difficulties in keeping your mind on usual daily tasks, it is time to cut down on stress. Seeing a specialist to deal with If your mental health could be an option, but it can be costly unless you have comprehensive health cover or you can get on a waiting list.

Consistent feeling of tiredness

It is normal to feel tired after a long day’s work. What of the occasions when even an uninterrupted 8-hour sleep the previous night is not enough to get you energised for the day ahead?  If you find yourself “feeling tired” to work during the early hours of a work day, it is more to do with emotional exhaustion than physical tiredness and a sign of burnout. In some cases, you will yourself into sickness just to get “more rest”.

Unfounded disgruntled attitude

If you suddenly find yourself lamenting about the work environment or your colleagues and having doubts in your ability to cope in a formerly perfect environment, it may be a symptom of overload burnout.  This is especially the case if you are in a minority group of employees feeling disenchanted with your bosses, co-workers and workload.

What can you do to remedy the situation?

  1. Carefully map out a relaxation path.
  2. Engage in activities you are passionate about outside work.
  3. Detach from all forms of communication technology after work hours.
  4. Increase the number of sleeping hours
  5. Organise your personal and professional life properly to avoid overlapping
  6. Work with a psychologist to properly draw a line on where you are at fault for your condition and where outside influences are at fault.