Constant stress on the job can lead to burnout. This is when a person’s physical and mental health begins to suffer due to the stress they experience at work. Burnout can even creep into a person’s social and family life and negatively impact those aspects of their lives.

Burnout does not happen overnight. It is something that happens gradually. Because burnout happens slowly over time, it may be easy to miss its symptoms and mistake it for everyday stress.

Physical symptoms of burnout include fatigue, changes in eating and sleeping habits, headaches, and being sick frequently. Emotional signs of burnout include a loss of motivation, a negative outlook on life, feeling helpless, a sense of failure, and a decreased sense of satisfaction and accomplishment at work and in life. Burnout will even alter some people’s behavior as they look for ways to cope with the overwhelming stress. Some people will withdraw from friends and family and isolate themselves. Other people may begin to procrastinate and even take their frustrations out on their family, friends, and co-workers.

Now that you know what burnout is and its symptoms let us look at some of the causes of burnout. A high-pressure work environment, monotonous work, and too many demands at work can lead to a burnt-out feeling. Working too much, lacking socialization, not getting enough sleep, and taking on too many responsibilities will also cause people to feel burnt out. Perfectionists, pessimists, high achievers, and people who need to feel in control are also more likely to experience burnout in their lives.

As you can see, burnout can negatively impact your physical health and mental well-being and even negatively alter your behavior. Fortunately, there are easy ways to prevent burnout and reverse its impacts if you are already experiencing some of the symptoms of burnout. One easy way to fight against burnout is to eliminate negative people from your life and open up to friends and family. Having social support can help alleviate stress. If you are in a less-than-ideal job, try looking at it differently. Look at the positive aspects of the job and how you are helping people. Finally, exercise, plenty of sleep, daily breaks, and a healthy diet can all help reduce stress and eliminate burnout from your life.