Emotional burnout - a symptom of our times - VIDEO PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 12 February 2015 12:50

It is a state of exhaustion, which leads to paralysis of our forces, accompanied by a loss of feeling and joy. Nowadays, more frequent cases of burnout.

This applies not only social occupations for which a burnout syndrome was characterized previously, but also other professions, as well as personal life. Promotes the spread of burnout our era - the time to reach, consumption, new materialism, entertainment and enjoyment of life. This is the time when we exploit ourselves and allow ourselves to exploit. That's what I'd like to talk about today.

First I will describe burnout and say a few words about how it can be recognized. Then I try to tell you about the background on which this syndrome occurs, and then give a small overview of the work on the burnout syndrome and show how it can be prevented.


Who does not know the symptoms of burnout? I think that everyone has ever felt them. We find ourselves at the signs of exhaustion, when a lot of stress experienced, accomplished something big. For example, if we were preparing for exams, working on some project, wrote a thesis or raising two young children. It happens that the work took a lot of stress forces, there were some crisis situations, or, for example, during a flu epidemic doctors had to work very hard.
And then there are symptoms such as irritability, lack of desire, sleep disorder (when a person can not fall asleep, or, conversely, sleeps very long time), decreased motivation, the person feels uncomfortable mainly, can manifest depressive symptoms. This is a simple version of the burning - burning at the level of the reaction, the physiological and psychological response to excessive stress. When the situation is completed, the symptoms disappear on their own. In this case, can help free weekend, time for yourself, dream vacation, sports. If we are not renewable energy through the rest, the body goes into saving mode forces.

In fact, both the body and the mind are so arranged that a lot of stress were possible - because people sometimes have to work hard to achieve some big goals. For example, to rescue his family from any troubles. The problem lies elsewhere: if the call does not end, that is, if people really can not relax, constantly in a state of tension, if they constantly feel to them imposed any requirements, they are always concerned about something, feel fear constantly alert for something, something expected, this leads to overstrain of the nervous system in humans tense muscles, there is pain. Some people in a dream start to gnash their teeth - it can be a symptom of overexertion.


If the voltage becomes chronic, then burn out the level of frustration.

In 1974, a psychiatrist from New York Freudenberger first published an article about the volunteers who work in the social sphere in the name of the local church. In this article, he described their situation. These people have symptoms similar to depression. In their history, he showed always the same: first, these people were absolutely delighted by their activities. Then this delight gradually begins to decrease. And eventually they faded to a state of a handful of ashes. All of them were found similar symptoms: emotional exhaustion, constant fatigue. At the thought that tomorrow to go to work, they have a sense of fatigue. They had a variety of physical complaints, they are often ill. This was one of the groups of symptoms.

With regard to their senses, they no longer have power. What happened was what he called the dehumanization. Changed their attitude towards the people they helped, first a loving, attentive, and then it turned into a cynical, rejects negative. Also worsened relations with colleagues, a feeling of guilt, the desire to get away from it all. They worked less and doing all of the template, like robots. That is, these people have not been able, as before, to enter into a relationship and did not aspire to it.

This behavior has a certain logic. If I have a feeling there are no more power, then I have no strength to love to listen to other people become for me a load. It feels like I can not meet them, their demands are excessive to me. Then start acting automatic defensive reactions. From the point of view of the mind, it is very reasonable.

A third group of symptoms author found a decrease in performance. People were dissatisfied with their work and their achievements. They experience themselves as powerless, did not feel that achieve some success. Total for them was too much. And they felt that they do not get the recognition they deserve.

After spending this study, Freudenberger found that burnout symptoms do not correlate with the number of working hours. Yes, the more someone works, the more he suffers from this emotional power. Emotional exhaustion increases in proportion to the number of working hours, but the other two groups of symptoms - performance and dehumanization, dehumanization relations - almost not affected. The person continues to be productive for a while. This indicates that the burnout has its own dynamics. It's more than just exhaustion. At this point we still dwell.


Freudenberger created a scale consisting of 12 stages of burnout. The first stage still looks very innocuous, first in patients with burnout obsessive desire to assert himself ("I can do something"), perhaps even in competition with others.

Then begins a casual attitude to their own needs. People no longer give yourself free time, less involved in sports, he has less time for people to himself, he was less talking with someone.

At the next stage man has no time for conflict resolution - so he displaces them, and later even ceases to perceive them. He does not see that at work, at home, with friends, there are some problems. He retreats. We see something similar to the flower that fades more and more.

Later lost feelings about themselves. People no longer feel. They're just machines, and can not stop. After a while, they feel empty inside, and if it continues, the more likely to be depressed. At last, the twelfth stage, the person is completely broken. He gets sick - physically and mentally, experiencing despair, suicidal thoughts are often present.

One patient came to me with the emotional burnout. Came and sat in a chair, sighed and said, "I'm glad that I'm here." He looked exhausted. It turned out that he could not even call me to arrange a meeting - his wife dialed phone number. I then asked him on the phone, as it is urgent. He replied that he urgently. And then I agreed with the first meeting on Monday. On the day of the meeting, he admitted: "All the two-day weekend, I could not guarantee that I will not jump out of the window. My condition was so unbearable. "

It was a very successful businessman. His staff about it knew nothing - he was able to hide from them their condition. And for a very long time, he hid it from his wife. At the eleventh stage of his wife noticed it. He still continued to deny the problem. It was only when he could no longer live, already under pressure from the outside, he was ready to do something. That's how far can start a burnout. Of course, this is an extreme example.

The enthusiasm of disgust

To more simple words indicate that manifests itself as emotional burnout, you can resort to the description of the German psychologist Matthias Burusho people. He described four steps.

The first stage looks completely innocuous: it really is not quite burning. This is the stage where you need to be careful. It was then that a man driven by idealism, some ideas, some enthusiasm. But claims that he constantly makes in relation to itself, excessive. He demands too much from myself for weeks and months.

The second stage - the depletion: physical, emotional, physical weakness.

In the third stage usually become effective the first defensive reactions. What does one do if the requirements are constantly excessive? He goes out of the relationship, there is dehumanization. This is a reaction to counter a defense, to exhaustion did not become stronger. Intuitively, one feels that he needs a rest, and to a lesser extent maintain social relationships. The relations that must live, because without them you can not do, burdened rejection, repulsion.

That is, in principle, this is the right response. But it is an area where the reaction takes effect, is not suitable for this purpose. Rather, the person needs to be relaxed with respect to those requirements which are presented to him. But that is what they can not - get away from the demands and claims.

The fourth stage - the strengthening of what is happening in the third stage, end-stage burnout. Burusho people called it "a syndrome of disgust." This concept, which means that more people in itself carries no joy. In respect of all there is disgust. For example, if I ate rotten fish, I came vomiting, and the next day I hear the smell of fish, I have an aversion. That is a protective feeling after poisoning.


Speaking about the reasons, in general, there are three area. This individual psychological area when a person has a strong desire to surrender to this stress. The second area - socio-psychological, or social - is the pressure from the outside: various fashions, some social norms, demands at work, the spirit of the time. For example, it is estimated that each year you need to go on a journey - and if I can not do this, then I do not meet people living at that time, their way of life. This pressure can be carried out in a latent form, and it may have the effect of burnout.

More dramatic requirements - is, for example, the requirements of prolonged working hours. Today, people and processes does not receive payment for it, and if he does not, he is fired. Permanent processing - it costs inherent in the capitalist era, in which lives Austria, Germany, and probably also Russia.

So, we have identified two groups of reasons. From the first we can work in the psychological aspect, in the framework of consultation, and in the second case, you need to change something at the level of policy, at the level of trade unions.

But there is a third reason, which is related to the organization of systems. If the system provides an individual freedoms too little, too little responsibility, if there is mobing (baiting), then people are very stressful. And then, of course, essential to restructure the system. It is necessary to develop the organization in a different way, to enter coaching.

Meaning you can not buy

We restrict ourselves to the group of psychological reasons. In the existential analysis, we empirically found that the cause of burnout is the existential vacuum. Emotional burnout can be understood as a special form of existential vacuum. Viktor Frankl described the existential vacuum as suffering from a sense of emptiness and lack of meaning.

A study conducted in Austria, during which 271 have been tested doctor, showed the following results. Found that those doctors who were meaningful life and not suffer from existential vacuum, there was little burnout, even if they have worked for many hours. Those doctors who have detected a relatively high level of existential vacuum in their work, demonstrated high levels of burnout, even if they worked fewer hours.

From this we can conclude that the meaning can not be bought. Does nothing to make money, if I'm on your work suffer from the emptiness and lack of meaning. We can not compensate for this.

Burnout confronts us with the question: Do I really worry about the point of what I'm doing? The meaning depends on how we feel personally value in what we do or not. If we follow the apparent meaning: career, social recognition, love of others, then it is false or apparent meaning. It costs us more strength and causes stress. As a consequence, we have a shortage of execution. Then we experience the devastation - even when relaxing.

At the other extreme is a way of life where we live performance - even if you are tired. Performance, despite being tired, does not lead to burnout.

Summarizing, we can say the following: burnout - is a finite state occurring as a result of the ongoing creation of something without experience in the aspect of performance. That is, if the fact that I do, I experience meaning, if I feel that what I do is good, interesting and important if I am happy this and want to do it, then burn occurs. But these feelings are not to be confused with enthusiasm. Enthusiasm does not necessarily related to the performance - it is more hidden from other, more modest thing.

WHAT I give myself?

Another aspect, which brings us to the topic of burnout - is motivation. Why do I do something? And as I turned to this? If I can not give my heart to what I'm doing when I'm not interested, I do it for some other reason, then we are in a sense lie.

It's like as if I was listening to someone, but thinking about something else. That is, if I do not attend. But if I do not attend at work in my life, then I can not in the same charge for this service. It's not about the money. Yes, of course I can make money, but I personally do not get the reward. If I am not present in the heart of any business, and use what I do, as a means to achieve the objectives, then I abuse the situation.

For example, can I start a project, because he promises me a lot of money. And I almost can not refuse and somehow resist it. Thus we can be tempted by some choice, which then leads us to burnout. If it happens only once, then maybe it's not so bad. But if it goes on for years, then I'll just pass by his life. What I give myself?

And here, by the way, can be extremely important that I have a burnout. Probably because I can not stop myself its direction of motion. I need that wall, from which I come across some kind of push from the inside, so I just could not keep moving and revised their actions.

Example of money, probably the most superficial. Motives can be much deeper. For example, I want to recognize. I need praise from the other. If you do not meet these narcissistic needs, then I become bespokoynym.Snaruzhi it can not be seen - only people who are close to this man can feel it. But I probably will not even about to talk to them. Or I did not realize that I have such needs.

Or, for example, I certainly want to make sure. I have known poverty in childhood, I had to continue wearing old clothes. I was ridiculed for it, and I was ashamed. Maybe even my family was starving. I would not want to never go through this.

I know people who have become very rich. Many of them came to burnout. Because for them it was the primary motive - in any case, to prevent the state of poverty to become poor again. Is humanly understandable. But it can lead to excessive requirements that will never end.

To people for a long time were willing to follow such a seeming, false motivation, their behavior has to be a lack of something, mentally shortage, some misfortune. This deficiency leads a person to self-exploitation.

The value of life

This deficiency can not only be subjectively perceived need, but also with respect to installation of life, which ultimately can lead to burnout.

As I understand it your life? Based on this, I can develop your goals, under which I live. These settings can be from the parents or the person develops them himself. For example: I want to achieve something. Or: I want to have three children. To become a psychologist, a doctor or a politician. Thus man for himself outlines the goals that he wants to follow.

This is perfectly normal. Who of us have goals in life? But if the goal of becoming the content of life, if they become too large values, then it will lead to rigidity, stagnation behavior. Then we put all efforts to achieve this goal. And everything that we do, is a means to an end. And it does not carry its own value, and is only useful value.



Related news items:
Newer news items:
Older news items:


Add comment