Do you work hard each day and come home from your job feeling tired, sick, depressed, even hopeless?

If so, you may have burnout, now deemed an official medical diagnosis by the World Health Organization (WHO).

It’s not in your head, although most days you probably will finish your day with a moderate headache or a migraine, but work-related stress is the scientific, researched cause of burnout.

Frequent headaches

Frequent headaches and migraines at work, are a sign of burnout. Photo courtesy: Helpguide.org

How will you know if you have burnout, or just hate your job?

According to the WHO, the following three signs may indicate that you have burnout, once your doctor has ruled out other similar signs of a medical condition.

  1. "Feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion
  2. Increased mental distance from one's job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one's job
  3. Reduced professional efficacy or incompetence"

Burnout should only be diagnosed with work-related symptoms, not family or relationship stress. Some medical conditions that mimic burnout include adjustment disorder, disorders specifically associated with stressanxiety or fear-related disorders, and mood disorders.

Depressed woman

A stressful day at work can have you feeling overwhelmed, and lead to burnout. Photo courtesy: Pixabay

The following signs break down the typical symptoms of burnout in laymen’s terms, or easy-to-understand, everyday, breakroom talk.

  1. You're tired all the time – even after a good night’s sleep, taking vitamins, eating healthy, and exercising, and despite a clean bill of physical health from your doctor.
  1. You’re no longer motivated to achieve – When you were first hired, you were hopeful and enthusiastic about your career, but no more. You could care less if you are successful – You go to work, but you don’t do your best, and you have a very negative attitude throughout the day.
  1. Your job performance has drastically dropped – You are being called into your supervisor’s office on a regular basis because of neglect and major mistakes. You are on the verge of getting fired and you don’t really care. In fact, you really want it to happen.

Stress - Relax sign

Here’s how to recover from or prevent burnout.

  1. Make yourself a priority – Stop neglecting your mental, physical, and emotional health. Take frequent breaks and pamper yourself.
  1.  Adopt a new perspective – Think uplifting thoughts instead of gloom and doom. It’s better to think that “The glass is half full, instead of half empty.”
  1. Minimize the stressors in your life – Perhaps it’s time to take a mental health day, days, or a much-needed vacation.
  1. Surround yourself with positive people – Seek out mentors and advisors who understand and have been where you are.
  1. Seek professional help from counselors, coaches, and therapists before you head into deep depression.

Do you have any more ideas for how to prevent or treat burnout? Tell us in the comments!