Overwhelmed by work: alarm bells

Overwhelmed by work: alarm bells

Workplace harassment, personal disagreement, and goals for which the worker cannot show preference are some of the risk factors for Burnout Syndrome. We explain how to find out if you are overwhelmed by work.

Overwhelmed by work: alarm bells

Last update: January 12, 2022

The demands of work, even those of teleworking, can be exhausted in the absence of psychophysical balance. They can also cause chronic fatigue, even if we are in good health, as the drops end up eroding the stone. How to tell if you are overwhelmed by work?



Sindrome da burnout

For decades, burnout syndrome has been increasingly present in various workplaces: generates sick moods, altered by work stress or chronic fatigue.

In other words, it is the extreme response to chronic stress that takes shape in the workplace, with consequences at the individual level that directly affect organizational and social interests.

The term "burnout" began to be used in 1977, when Christina Maslach, an American psychologist, expert and researcher, introduced it to a conference in front of the American Association of Psychologists.

Maslach and his colleague Susan Jackson define this syndrome as the behavioral reaction to work stress, characterized by emotional exhaustion, carelessness or disinterest in dealing with customers and users and difficulties in personal fulfillment.

How to tell if you are overwhelmed by work

Today in many professions or trades we find the so-called burnout syndrome which is not always due to work overload. This is not actually the most common cause of burnout, but it is carry out a demotivating work on a cognitive and emotional levelo.

In other words, stress is related to many factors of daily life and burnout is one of the forms of chronic work stress. To recognize this syndrome it is good to pay attention to the following symptoms.



Physical exhaustion

  • Migraine.
  • Chronic fatigue.
  • Weight gain.
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Muscle aches.
  • Gastrointestinal disorders.
  • Changes in the menstrual cycle.

Mental exhaustion

  • Fatigue.
  • Sadness.
  • Insomnia.
  • Anxiety.
  • Depression.
  • Irritability.
  • Lack of energy.
  • Emotional exhaustion.
  • Feelings of incompetence.
  • Attitudes of rejection towards work.
  • Deterioration of the professional self-concept.
  • Distance and cynicism towards customers.

Overwhelmed by work: why?

To find out if you are overwhelmed by work, you have to ask yourself in what how one's own interpretation of the working reality influences the achievement of objectives and how these factors affect the mood.

Don't lose sight of that the causes also depend on the type of organizational and institutional structure in which one works.

If we don't feel supported in our job duties and there is poor communication from colleagues or superiors, we could be exposed to emotional exhaustion and interpersonal conflict.

If the work makes you angry, aggressive, frustrated and hostile, and you feel a lot of pressure on yourself, you need to stop and initiate changes that prevent the situation from becoming chronic. Likewise, they regulate and prevent physical and emotional ailments.

Consequences of Burnout Syndrome

If you suffer from burnout syndrome, according to psychologist Anabella Martínez Pérez, the behavioral consequences manifest themselves in the loss of proactivity and habits that are harmful to health, such as the abuse of exciting substances. As for physiological disorders, there are:


  • Ulcers.
  • Headache
  • Hypertension.
  • Toothache.
  • Muscle ailments.
  • Sexual dysfunctions
  • Transient loss of voice.

The consequences are not only for the worker, but also for the organization because it generates poor work performance, absenteeism, increased risk of accidents and significant economic losses.


Intervention when overwhelmed by work

If you are diagnosed with Burnout Syndrome, it is important to implement coping strategies, such as letting off steam with loved ones, engaging in new activities in your free time, being clear about the situation, and staying away from it until it can be managed healthily.


Self-awareness is essential for dealing with work stress and regulating emotions; in case of suffering, we must not escape the problem, but face it calmly. This is the guideline for depriving it of energy and processing it smoothly.

At the organizational level, it is essential to identify the worker with Burnout to prevent its effects through information and teaching of coping strategies. Identify the professional causes that lead to the syndrome, such as workplace harassment, poor management of the organizational climate, toxic work environment, etc.

It's possible also seek psychological help to diagnose, prevent or process the syndrome. Emotional health is essential for our lives to be regulated and free from emotional burdens.

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