13 WARNING SIGNS YOU’RE HEADING FOR A BURNOUT


If you are feeling overwhelmed and unable to cope with daily stresses, you could be heading for burnout, previously known as ‘nervous breakdown’. 


You are not alone! Here’s what to watch for, and how to get help.

Medical professionals have replaced the term ‘nervous breakdown' with more specific mental health conditions that may underlie it, but it generally refers to not being able to cope with everyday life to the extent that extreme emotional and/or physical stress prevents one from functioning normally.

COMMON CAUSES
We all have different ways of coping with stress, so there’s no way to measure how much or what kind of stress will cause a mental breakdown in any particular person. But ongoing stress can be a trigger – things like long-term financial problems, unpleasant working conditions, a chronic illness or caring for a disabled or terminally ill family member can all cause ‘the final straw’ that leads to collapse or breakdown. Other possible causes include a sudden traumatic event like the death of a loved one or a major life change such as divorce.

It doesn't help to compare yourself to other people – just because your neighbour runs her own business, always feeds her family healthy meals and serves on the school parents' group, all while nursing her sick gogo for months, you don't have to feel bad because you get home exhausted by work stress and can't cook. The important thing is to realise when you're reaching your own level of not coping.



WHEN TO GET HELP
If you are experiencing more than three of the symptoms below, the short answer is ‘right now’! Everyone experiences some of these symptoms at some time, but if you’re feeling close to the edge, talk to someone – a close friend or trusted family member can help you decide if you need to see a doctor, or maybe join a support group (see directory, right). A doctor can diagnose an underlying condition like depression or anxiety, and give you medicines to help you cope. A psychologist or social worker can help assess your work and home situation, and suggest coping strategies or changes. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness – it’s a sensible and practical thing to do before everything collapses.

QUICK FACTS
* There are no statistics for ‘nervous breakdown’ because it’s not a medical condition, but in one American study 26% of people who took part claimed to be on the verge of a breakdown.
* According to the World Health Organisation, one in four people will be affected by a mental health disorder at some stage of their lives, but approximately two-thirds don't seek medical treatment, even when it is readily available. This is possibly due to mistaken beliefs about mental illness being a sign of weakness – but it is no ‘weaker' to have mental problems than it is to have a heart condition, diabetes or allergies.



WHAT TO WATCH FOR
The symptoms are varied and sometimes surprising:

  • Eating too much – we all know about comfort eating helping to give us a lift when we’re feeling low, but constant eating can be the body’s way of preparing for ‘flight’ from ongoing stress. 
  • Difficulty concentrating or sleeping. 
  • Feeling hopeless or overwhelmed almost all the time. 
  • Feeling restless or agitated. 
  • Feeling that everyone is against you. 
  • Difficulty getting out of bed in the morning. 
  • Neglecting your appearance/hygiene – not washing your hair, wearing dirty clothes.
  • Feeling that normal responsibilities (e.g. looking after children) are too much for you. 
  • Calling in sick for work often or missing appointments. 
  • Mood swings. 
  • Feeling angry with yourself and others and wanting to hurt someone (or yourself). 
  • Constantly dwelling on negative feelings – loneliness, pain, anxiety. 
  • Worrying all the time that something bad is going to happen to you, your family or other loved ones.

DIRECTORY
South Africa
SA Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG)
+2711 234 4837 / 0800 20 50 26 (8h00 to 20h00, 7 days a week)
facebook.com/TheSADAG

Botswana
Botswana Network for Mental Health
+267 72 662 161
facebook.com/MentalHealthisvital

Lesotho
Ask at your local clinic or hospital for help from Bo-mphato Litsebeletsong tsa Bophelo (Partners in Health programme)

Namibia
Namibian Mental Health Association
facebook.com/Ritaamakali

Swaziland
Mbabane Mental Health Support Group (Denise)
+268 2404 8375/+268 7635 5152

By Anne Hahn 

 JET CLUB HELPLINES
Jet Club members have free access to Jet Club’s helplines. For support and advice on depression or babycare call:

Personal Health Advisor
SA & Namibia
0800 0045 45
Botswana, Lesotho & Swaziland
+2711 991 8258



13 WARNING SIGNS YOU’RE HEADING FOR A BURNOUT 13 WARNING SIGNS YOU’RE HEADING FOR A BURNOUT Reviewed by Jet Club on September 04, 2019 Rating: 5

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.