Burnout syndrome, like other disorders, does not appear out of nowhere. It draws idealists with high standards and equally high expectations, people who are ready to invest all of their energy for the betterment of others. Even those who simply want to perform a decent job but haven't learnt to ask for support.


Previously, burnout syndrome primarily impacted mature managers in major corporations. However, with increased demands on our performance, it is also happening in young people, such as university students. According to data from the Psychiatric Clinic of the 1st Medical Faculty of Charles University, around 20% of the Czech population suffers from more severe burnout syndrome symptoms.

Burnout is a term used to describe the loss of balance in our lives as a result of what we still have to do. If this describes you, put your responsibilities aside for a moment and prioritize yourself.

What is burnout syndrome?

Burnout syndrome, also known as burnout syndrome, is a condition that has a delayed onset, similar to chronic stress. What are the symptoms? One symptom is an uncomfortable sense of tiredness that progresses to physical exhaustion.

Burnout syndrome frequently manifests itself in stages. From the sensation that we have to do our best to do the task on time and well, to worry when we realize that our expectations are unrealistic and that the work we have done may not even be adequately valued, to anger, emotions of disappointment, and the realization that our work is no longer significant to us.

Don't hesitate to get tested for burnout syndrome. The test is designed by experts on the subject and takes approximately 5 minutes.

Symptoms of burnout syndrome

The first symptoms of burnout can be slight fatigue, occasional problems falling asleep and now and then you say to yourself that you really don't want to go to work tomorrow. If you're receptive to yourself, you may already be making a difference in your life, which is great. The next phase of burnout is accompanied by exhaustion, mood swings, a drop in performance and concentration, depression and anxiety, and secondarily, relationship problems and a drop in self-esteem.

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How do I know if I am suffering from burnout?

The first symptoms may be subtle, but they get progressively worse. They can be both mental and physical.

Psychological symptoms of burnout include:

  • Mild irritation when overloaded at work
  • Low mood
  • Mental exhaustion
  • Loss of enthusiasm at work, but also in personal life
  • Indifference or negative attitude towards work
  • Feeling unappreciated
  • Depression
  • Anxiety states

Physical symptoms of burnout syndrome can be:

  • Sleep disturbances
  • Fatigue
  • A lack of appetite
  • Digestive problems
  • Memory and concentration problems
  • Decline in performance

What are the stages of burnout syndrome?

Burnout syndrome typically has four phases:

  • Light dissatisfaction
    • we are not yet fully aware that something is wrong, but we are slightly irritated when we are overworked.
  • Unconscious overlooking of the problem
    • thoughts and emotions become increasingly unpleasant, dissatisfaction may also manifest itself by transferring the bad mood to those around us. We unconsciously resist the symptoms.
  • Conscious numbing
    • symptoms of burnout such as exhaustion, stress and anxiety begin to appear. We consciously try to numb these unpleasant states, but this does not solve the problem.
  • Trauma
    • burnout syndrome becomes chronic, panic attacks, complete physical and mental exhaustion may occur.

It is ideal to address burnout syndrome in the first stage to prevent further development of the problem. In general - the earlier the better!

Can I also burn out? Who is most vulnerable to burnout?

The most common cause of burnout syndrome is

  • helping professions like as doctors and medical professionals
  • occupations under severe stress and responsibility (managers)
  • professions interacting with people (teachers) are all at danger

In fact, it turns out that burnout syndrome has a considerably broader influence.

Burnout can readily strike women on maternity leave or those who have unrealistic expectations of themselves. Unfulfilled expectations, on the other hand, cause disillusionment, a lack of motivation, and, in the long run, contribute to the development of the condition. In the worst-case scenario, we may experience utter physical and mental fatigue.

What should I do if I'm suffering from burnout syndrome?

How can you recover from burnout? If you're already feeling the affects of burnout, don't go through it alone. Everyone now has access to the possibilities that psychological counselling and psychotherapy provide. They can help you in breaking free from the vicious cycle of self-demands and the tiredness that results from them.

Burnout syndrome treatment

It is best to handle burnout syndrome from the beginning. True, we may not think of them as a potential source of serious issues at first, but the sooner we catch the illness, the sooner we can get rid of it. If burnout syndrome becomes severe enough to have a noticeable impact on our life, we should seek expert help.

How can psychotherapy assist me in dealing with burnout?

Psychotherapy is a place where you may be yourself. In contrast, our inclination to give others space frequently adds to burnout syndrome. This is also why the caring professions are particularly vulnerable in this regard. Giving your every ounce of strength in the hope that someone would appreciate it. Or to give in to the illusion that only I can decide, do, and finish.

Psychotherapy as a treatment for burnout syndrome can name our unconscious patterns of thought, allowing us to decide whether to preserve them or build new routines.

Prevention - How can you avoid burnout syndrome?

Focusing on our relationship to work or study, but also to life in general and to our relationships, is an effective method to prevent burnout. It is beneficial to be conscious of your expectations and to set them in a realistic manner. This will also decrease the possibility of expending too much energy on work and performing above our capacities.

It will also assist us in pursuing our personal interests, especially our social lives. It will offer another dimension to our life and prevent the tiredness that frequently arises when we focus on one item for an extended period of time.

Even at this early stage of prevention, speaking with a psychotherapist or coach is a amazing start.  This is not a traditional treatment, but rather "self-development." Consult with experts on how to live life to the fullest while avoiding burnout.

Test yourself

If you are experiencing symptoms, talk to your doctor or contact a psychologist or psychotherapist.

You can also test yourself with a quick and reliable online test for burnout syndrome. The test contains a total of 25 questions and will take you approximately 5 minutes.

The real story of a client and how therapy helped:

"I stopped enjoying the work, I was irritable and exhausted, I didn't want to be there. My family took it home and arranged therapy for me. I found out I was experiencing burnout syndrome. Thanks to the therapist, I realized what was most draining about my current job and found the courage to ask my supervisor for a change.

I switched my job from the acute ward to the inpatient ward, where it is quieter and I still feel useful. Feelings of exhaustion and irritability have disappeared. I have a new appetite for work and for hobbies in my spare time. If I knew how little it takes to improve life, I would have done it a long time ago."

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