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Here Are the 12 Stages of Burnout, Which One Are You at? - 27 April 2022

Written by Kumara Anggita

12 Stage of Burnout

Prixa, Jakarta - Many things can trigger burnout, such as assisting people around us, having to complete piling up work, and taking care of our family. These activities might take away our time to rest and relax. As a result, we tend to get extremely stressed out and drained.

According to WHO, burnout is included in the 11th Revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11) as a phenomenon related to work or jobs that is not classified as a medical condition.

Quoted from WebMD, there are some signs of burnout that we should be aware of:

  1. The feeling of running out of energy or fatigue

  2. The tendency to mentally neglect work or the sense of work-related negativism or cynicism

  3. Declining performance at work

You may experience these symptoms gradually as there is a process that workers usually go through. Referring to Healthline, psychologists Herbert Freudenberger and Gail North describe the 12 phases of burnout as follows:

1. You have excessive drive or ambition at the beginning of work

Having a new job can sometimes push us to be more ambitious than usual. In fact, we tend to overdo our work to reach a certain level of self-validation. This pattern might probably satisfy you at first. However, if you continue to do this over time, it can lead to fatigue.

2. You push yourself to work harder

The extreme ambition that you have at the beginning will usually push you to work so hard that you may neglect your own needs

3. You sacrifice personal needs

Working too hard can also make you sacrifice your needs, including sleep, regular eating habits, exercise, and leisure.

4. You recognize that new conflicts start to emerge

When you have reached this phase, there is a huge chance that you will admit that you are overworked. As a result, you blame other people and things. For example, you can blame your boss, colleagues, work, and the situation you are in.

5. You have no time for non-work-related needs

You may consider other necessities that have nothing to do with your work unimportant. Because of this, you tend to look for a way to avoid them.

6. You start to be in denial

You have the tendency to deny the problems you are experiencing. Additionally, your thinking process becomes less flexible, affecting your problem-solving abilities. For instance, you may start losing patience with those around you while at work. You may also be putting blames on other people because you believe they are incompetent, lazy, or not serious.

7. You begin to experience self-withdrawal

You begin to withdraw from the people closest to you. You tend to reject their invitation to relax or have fun because you find them burdensome instead of entertaining.

8. Your behaviors are changing

You become prone to frustration or anger more than you usually are. You may even yell at your loved ones for no reason.

9. You experience depersonalization

You feel more distant and detached from your previous life. You may even feel like you do not have control over your own life.

10. You feel empty or anxious

You begin to question the meaning of your life because of the emptiness and anxiety you are going through. To fill this emptiness, you start seeking thrills by engaging in risky activities and behaviors such as drug use, gambling, and binge-eating.

11. Depression

You may develop a sense of hopelessness in your life that you feel that your life has lost its meaning.

12. You experience a mental or physical breakdown

Mental and physical health may be threatened when your stress and well-being are not appropriately treated. Studies show that burnout may lower your immune system, making you prone to sickness. What is more, this condition also puts your mental health at risk. You may develop mental health issues, including depression and anxiety. When you find yourself in this condition, you should consider seeking medical attention.

Reviewed by Clinical Psychologist Yulius Steven

When you notice that this condition has interfered with your daily activities, you should avoid self-diagnosing yourself. Make sure to see a professional for a proper diagnosis. Consult a licensed psychologist at Prixa only by clicking the button below. What are you waiting for?


WebMD. Diakses pada 2022. Burnout: Symptoms and Signs

World Health Organization. Diakses pada 2022. Burn-out an "occupational phenomenon": International Classification of Diseases

Healthline. Diakses pada 2022. A Guide to Burnout

Learn the 12 stages of burnout

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