What is Burnout?

Burnout is a state of physical and emotional exhaustion which happens slowly over time as a result of long-term stress.


Most people don’t even realize that it’s happening until it’s too late.  Pushing too hard for too long eventually leads your body to say “enough is enough!”

Burnout is more than just feeling tired, although it can start like that. In the beginning, it can feel like you just can’t quite get enough sleep to feel refreshed and awake, or just can’t seem to get yourself motivated to get what needs doing, done. But once burnout really sets in, it can feel like even the simplest tasks take monumental energy and effort – energy you don’t have and effort you can’t muster.


Physical Signs of Burnout:

  • Disruption in sleep patterns – some people sleep much more than normal, others struggle with insomnia
  • Lowered immune system – may find yourself getting sick more often that usual and/or when you get sick, getting REALLY sick and needing longer than normal to recover.
  • Struggles with food – some overeat or eat lots of processed comfort foods full of carbs and sugars, other may lose their appetite entirely and struggle to maintain a healthy body weight.
  • May experience panic attacks, increased blood pressure, joint & muscle pain and fatigue among others…


Emotional Signs of Burnout:

  • Lack of joy or pleasure from things that used to bring fulfillment
  • Lack of motivation to complete tasks
  • Issues with time management
  • Feeling like you can’t “snap out of it”
  • Appearance of / increase in symptoms of depression and/or anxiety
  • Struggles with concentration and procrastination
  • Social isolation from colleagues, friends, and loved ones
  • Negative attitude / negative self-talk and a general sense of dread about the future


Any of these symptoms of burnout feel familiar to you?


Burnout can happen due to extended stress in relationships, family obligations and/or in the workplace.  However, high-functioning leaders are at a particular risk for burnout at work due to their tendency to double-down in times of stress. This push-through approach can work when the stress is time-based and ending soon, however, when leaders continue to take on more and more responsibility with no end in sight, eventually the physical and emotional reserves run dry.


If you find yourself saying “This sounds like me!” to any of the above, let’s talk.  


There are concrete and tangible steps you can take to recover from burnout in a way that will make you healthier, more resilient, and increase your ability to lead in times of stress.  

Also if you see yourself on the slippery slope towards burnout, don’t wait till you hit rock bottom to turn things around.  

Upcoming events:


Life is a Marathon, not a Sprint: Burnout, Boundaries, and Balance – September 21, 2017 – 3pm to 6pm PST

Hosted by: Lilith Professional

Where: BCIT Downtown Campus, 555 Seymour Street, Vancouver, BC


Leaders often face a constant battle of trying to balance it all – work pressures, social and family obligations, and somewhere in all of that, still trying to have a LIFE! Too often, the need to be everything to everyone can find even the most high functioning leaders feeling lost and sliding into burnout. 


In this interactive professional development workshop discover:

  • How you can identify and avoid professional burnout, along with tools to buffer yourself in times of stress.
  • How to establish and utilize your own personal values to navigate difficult times (and build strong connections) in the workplace, and
  • How to create boundaries that protect what matters most in your life and communication strategies to make sure your needs are being heard.


This event offers you a unique opportunity to meet and network with like-minded professional women across a variety of industries. Develop a tangible, personalized plan that will help you create boundaries and balance, and have fun and make new connections while doing it.


Proceeds from this event go directly to funding Lilith 400 Young Leaders Program. If you would like more information about this event or regarding the Lilith 400 program, please contact info@lilithprofessional.com.


To reserve your space at the event, tickets can be booked here

Interested in personalized leadership coaching for you or your team?

Constance Lynn Hummel, MA is a Psychotherapist, Leadership Coach, and Certified Daring Way™ Facilitator based in Vancouver, BC.  She is available for individuals and organizations seeking leadership coaching, clinical consulting, speaking and corporate training.