Burnout

Burnout

professional exhaustion syndrome

Burnout basically means when you are a match that was lit and now extinguished. There is no more flame in you or your soul. You are thin and dark like a burnt match.

During your university studies no one warns you about burnout despite the fact that many developers suffer from it. Usually burnout happens when you have a tight schedule to finish a project. You take it upon yourself to complete it in time at the risk of your own health.

Your body tells you things, listen to it, I didn’t. A month before my burnout my left eyelid started twitching uncontrollably for an hour at a time. After a month I got sick, my doctor told me I had Shingles, also known as Zoster. Shingles is a reactivation of the Chickenpox virus. I had to stay in my house for a week, plenty of time to think of what led me to that situation.

It’s not the outside pressure that gets you but the pressure that you put on yourself. You are your toughest examiner and you fail yourself constantly. Don’t be so hard on yourself, give yourself some slack.  

Now, after having passed through that burnout period I handle stress differently. I work as hard as I can and if that was not enough, I know I tried my best and don’t beat myself up over it. I think Picard put it best:

It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness. That is life.

— Captain Jean-Luc Picard.

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