10 subtle signs of work burnout that your boss might not care about

Are you burnout at work? Do you feel that it is time for you to start hunting for a new job but you simply cannot find the strength to do it? Read on to find out the 10 subtle signs of work burnout that you should not ignore, even if your boss does not care about it.

1) Your memory becomes mesh
Your memory is a goner. Everything that you do seems to be done by someone else because you cannot recall them the moment it is over. You cannot remember what you had for lunch 3 hours ago, or where you have left your car keys.

This is an early sign of burnout as our adrenal glands pumps out the hormone cortisol when we are under stress, and research has shown that this fight-or-flight hormone can hinder our ability to remember things.

2) You are disaffected and snarky with work, your workplace and your colleagues
If you are constantly reacting poorly to things that you would normally ignore at the workplace or suddenly showing contempt for minor announcements in the office, you are probably suffering from an early sign of burnout.

When you start rolling your eyes at the first mention of “root cause analysis” or “key performance indicator”, it is time take a step back and consider if you are suffering from burnout.

3) You get really weird dreams
If you are constantly dreaming of work that turns into a nightmare, or zombies running after you trying to suck your blood dry, be kind to yourself and check if you are suffering from a bout of burnout.

When our body is tired and unable to sleep well, our dreams turn intense and weird. It is how our bodies are telling us that they have enough, they want out.

4) You get migraines on Saturday
When you thought the horrid week is over and you can enjoy a great weekend with your loved ones, migraines strike out at you on a Saturday and it persisted through the weekend.

This is not entirely explainable as neurologists are still puzzling over this one, but it could be due to a sharp drop in cortisol since the stress-inducing events are not present.

5) You are extremely exhausted
This is not the “I did not sleep well so I am exhausted” kind of tired. This kind of tired persists from the moment you step into the office until the moment you leave.

After you leave the office, you will be back to your normal self without a feel of being tired. This is yet another effect of burnout that you could easily detect for yourself

6) You get feelings of stagnation at work / having too much work
If you are feeling either being stagnated at work or having way too much work to do, you are probably feeling burnout. This is common for people who are working too hard and doing everything on their own at the workplace.

If you are not getting enough time to take a small break in between your tasks, you need to see about getting a smaller workload to prevent complete burnout.

7) You feel bored and detached at work
Nothing appeals to you at work. Everything that you are doing is boring and you feel completed detached from what you are doing. If you feel bored when you have a full plate and yet feel detached from all the work, you are in serious trouble.

When you start to think “I don’t care”, you will start to detach yourself further from your work. It is a downward spiral that you need to stop.

8) You keep getting mysterious illness that you cannot explain
If you are getting unexplained  and mysterious illnesses like stomach discomfort, insomnia, or headaches that you normally do not get, you might want to double check if stress is getting to you.

When your body starts to get mysterious illnesses, it is telling you that it is stressed out and need a break. Heed the advice from your body.

9) You keep thinking that you do not take enough vacation
When you feel that you are in need of a vacation, go ahead and take one, especially if you haven’t utilised your leave for the past 6 months.

Plan a trip and go for a break or you could just take leave and stay home to chill with your loved ones. Everyone needs a break now and then so it is not a crime to take time off to enjoy what you love to do.

10) Your body does not heal minor cuts quickly
When you are stressed, your immune system does not react as quickly as it should when healing minor cuts. It starts slower and moves slower as compared to one which is not stressed out. When you noticed that your cuts are taking a long time to heal, check if you are burnout at work.

There you have it, the 10 subtle signs that you are burnout. Notice how none of these will actually affect your boss? He or she is not going to take care of that, so you need to take care of yourself. Go for a break and do what you like to do for a week or so, just to take your mind off work.

Top Image: Tom Wang / Shutterstock.com


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Zerlina is a dreamer who wants to become a full pledged author someday. She spends many evenings reading novels and trying to write her own. She has 2 turtles and many fishes to give her inspiration for writing.