The Three Types of Burnouts and How You Can Overcome Them

Written by Tom Marino

March 28, 2021

Have you ever faced a career burnout or just wonder how bad the effect can be? Well, you are in the right place, as this blog is going to give you an insight into how lousy career burnout can be, its types, and how to overcome them.

Many of us face burnout at some point in our careers while trying to prove our worth. Even when you might have people working under you to carry out specific tasks, sometimes, you have to do it all by yourself to get it right the first time. Do it too often; sooner or later, you will definitely reach a burnout phase at some point.

Do you relate? Well, if you do, then nothing to be ashamed of because most people reading this post will agree to do the above-mentioned scenario.

According to a NORC’s General Social Survey 2016 conducted by the University of Chicago, 50 percent of U.S citizens constantly face burnout at work.

If you have personally suffered burnout, you probably know how challenging it can be to overcome it. While many might advise you to take time off to recoup your energy tanks, it does not always help.

The reason is we seem to underestimate the problem and its severity. Leave burnout unchecked, and you may end up suffering from mental health disorders, autoimmune disorders, and heart disease. Therefore, it is imperative to educate yourself about the types of burnout and how to overcome them as soon as possible.


Three Types of Burnout

There are three types of burnout, and here is a brief intro to each of them.

1.      Overload

This is the first and the most common burnouts that most of us are familiar with. In case of suffering from overload burnout, it is the result of you working harder and frantically to be successful. We are all aware of someone who had or is willing to risk their personal life and health in order to pursue a successful career.

2.      Cruise-Control Burnout

In cruise-control burnout, you will feel bored, lazy, and restless at work. You might go to work casually and late and always leave early to be in your safe place, such as at a bar or home browsing through social media.

You often feel that something is missing from your professional life and that you can do something better. You feel under-appreciated and under-challenged at your workplace.

In case you are experiencing this feeling, then it is a sign that you need to find a new purpose at work. The best solution often means that you must change your career, i.e., find a new job at least. However, if quitting a job is not possible, then try to start a side business or invest in learning new skills to enhance your professional portfolio.

In a cruise control burnout, you must take action to step out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself more in your professional routine.

3.      Neglect Burnout

The third type of burnout is neglect which results when you feel helpless at your current workplace. Have you ever felt that things at work do not turn out as promising as you thought they would when you started new? As a result, you stop trying and sometimes even fall into the limbo of feeling incompetent.

You feel as if you are not capable of fulfilling the duties of your job. It happens to most of us when we work hard to succeed at work and face repeated disappointments and barriers. Result? We simply give up.

This type of burnout has a close association with imposter syndrome, where you lack motivation and adapt passivity.


How to Overcome the Burnout

Not all of us burnout, in the same way; it affects everyone differently for a different reason. Therefore, it is important for you to find out why you feel the burnout and then be able to work on overcoming it.

If you are sure that it is the burnout you are experiencing, it is best to take breaks during your workdays. This is important, especially if it is the rigorous working pattern that has got you to this stage.

  • Taking Regular Breaks

However, if the burnout is due to boredom or an overwhelming feeling of professional neglect, taking breaks can help you redirect your mind to other things. Put away all your digital devices and leave work at the office. Carrying your office in your pocket is the last thing you need when you are already struggling with depleted psychological batteries.

  • Finding New Interests

Try to find something interesting to do. Take on a new hobby, find a sports activity to indulge into or learn to cook. The goal is to find something that can help you concentrate on other things in life and avoid work-related stress.

  • Taking Long Weekends Off

Sometimes it may not be a long-term burnout but short-term side effects of exertion. As we hustle between our personal and professional life, we tend to exhaust ourselves mentally and physically. For that, it is best to take long weekends off when you can.

  • Using Your Leaves

If you have some vacations left in your quote, avail of them. However, make sure not to indulge in any work-related activity while you are away. Checking your emails, making calls to work to inquire about something pending, etc., is a NO-NO.

  • Seeking Guidance from a Life Coach

In case none of the above strategies work, then you may be dealing with something serious. Feeling fatigued and restlessness resonate with burnout, but if you feel stuck and nothing else seems to matter in life anymore, you are dealing with different kinds of trouble.

  • Changing Your Career Pathway

Ask yourself these questions:

Is your employer giving you enough opportunities to grow and perform your duties? If not that it is time to look for a different position or a job.

Does your job instill excitement in you? If not, then you need to rethink your career pathway.


Recovering from burnouts will require time.  Take some steps to satisfy your needs by following some of these steps highlighted here.   However, if you feel hopeless, it is best for you to seek guidance from a good life coach to mentor you into positivity. As an Executive and Life Coach I have helped many professionals move past their burnout to create balance with proven strategies.  There is a way to balance your life and achieve the success you desire without burning out.

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