Developing a healthy mindset along with taking the time to nourish your mental, physical, emotional, and intellectual health is the most valuable investment in your general well-being. Moreover, doing so is important largely because you will have complete control over your health and avoid experiencing devastating burnout. In this article, we will dig deeper into the realities of one type of burnout, known as university burnout.
University burnout is commonly known as academic burnout, which refers to a form of prolonged periods of exhaustion and stress due to academic difficulties and work hard to recover. University students are most at risk of experiencing burnout as a result of the high levels of stress involved in studying, completing assignments, and exams, attending several classes as well as meeting tough deadlines.
Although stress is simply part of life, especially in university, it can become a major problem if it is left unmanaged. As a result, excessive stress may lead to burnout or even serious health issues such as depression. Hence, it is vital to take safety precautions to avoid university burnout and work hard to recover if you experience it at a particular point in your academic journey.
Main causes of University burnout:
University burnout is caused by many internal and external factors. Here are a few main causes:
- Due to personal reasons, some students work approximately 19 hours each week while attending university. As a result of this, students may experience burnout because of work and academics.
- Family issues or losing a loved one:
- Family problems or losing a loved one in death may greatly affect university students negatively even resulting in burnout.
- Exams and coursework:
- Students may experience burnout and anxiety because of increased workloads associated with university activities, assignments, and exams.
- Finances are a fundamental part of pursuing high education, hence it can be extremely stressful if a student is struggling to pay their university fees.
- Social pressures:
- Beyond academic pressures, peer pressure and many social expectations may contribute to extreme stress, especially for first-year university students.
Negative consequences of university burnout:
When left unattended, university burnout can have negative effects on students.
Let us look at some of the negative consequences of university burnout.
- Sleep disorders
- Any form of stress or anxiety including burnout affects one’s sleeping patterns, resulting in sleep disturbances.
- Substance abuse
- Some students turn to drugs and alcohol to deal with burnout. Sadly though, this has caused substance abuse and addiction leading to further academic difficulties, dropping out of university, and even death.
- Chronic pain
- Burnout leads to physical conditions such as backaches, headaches, stomach aches, and neck pains.
- Extreme burnout may result in an anxiety disorder, which involves excess worry, fear, irritability, shaking, muscle tension along with racing thoughts.
- Severe burnout may lead to depression, which is a complicated mental health condition caused by negative external factors or internal factors.
If you have been experiencing university burnout, it is time to take the necessary steps to recover from it.
- Seek medical assistance
- Most universities have health and wellness centers, so students can reach out for help if they experience burnout.
- External medical assistance can be found through psychologists or general practitioners.
- Identify the symptoms
- Recognize the symptoms of university burnout to effectively deal with it.
- Do not ignore your situation
- University burnout tends to worsen over time, hence it is vital to take the necessary steps to recover.
- Stress management
- University burnout is extreme stress, so learn to manage stress by giving yourself time to decompress stress.
- Get enough sleep
- Getting enough sleep reduces stress tremendously and improves your mood.
- Have a healthy diet
- Ensure that you eat nutritious food to combat burnout and boost your mood.
- Exercise frequently
- Regular exercise can help students recover from burnout mainly because it is the most effective way to improve sleeping patterns and also improves cognitive abilities.
- Set realistic goals
- Avoid being a workaholic and a perfectionist when you work towards your goals. This is important because setting unrealistic goals for yourself may increase your stress levels, resulting in burnout.
- Avoid procrastination
- Procrastination leads to increased workloads and increases stress. Therefore, manage your time effectively and avoid procrastinating.
Ways you can avoid University burnout
Once you have fully recovered from university burnout, here are some steps you can take to avoid being a victim again.
- Set specific and reasonable academic goals for yourself to avoid university burnout.
- Get enough sleep every day. It is advisable to sleep 7 to 9 hours each night.
- Meet deadlines and avoid procrastinating.
- Drink water and eat healthily.
- Take a break once in a while and spend time doing what you enjoy most.
- Make your academic journey enjoyable by incorporating activities (daily, weekly or monthly) that interest you most.
Frequently asked questions
- How do university burnouts affect academic performance?
- University burnout impacts one’s ability to concentrate, which affects academic performance.
- Why is it important to recover from university burnout?
- Your well-being and academics are at risk if you choose to ignore the condition.
The bottom line is that beyond your academics, your health is extremely important. Simply put, you can never strive academically if you have poor mental, physical and emotional health. Therefore, as a student make it a goal to take care of your wellbeing while pursuing all your academic goals, doing so will safeguard you from experiencing university burnout.