Is burnout really job related depression?

Feeling burnt out? Depression may be at the root of the problem. An analysis completed by Swiss scientists found that depression and burnout are closely linked. Depression may lead to burnout and vice versa. In fact, burnout may simply be a form of depression. Understanding the connection between the two makes the situation easier to address.

So, does depression cause burnout? It’s complicated. An analysis of 14 studies completed by Swiss researchers found that burnout and depression share symptoms. Based on their findings, the researchers believe that burnout may not be a distinct syndrome. For it to be a separate syndrome, a mental issue needs to be mostly associated with distinct symptoms.

Researchers identified three specific symptoms of burnout: exhaustion, detachment, and low professional efficacy. Efficacy is your belief in your ability to bring about change. Researchers then reviewed 14 studies involving 12,417 participants. The findings showed that the symptoms of burnout were more closely related to depression.

For example, exhaustion was more closely associated with symptoms of depression than with the other symptoms of burnout. Symptoms of depression include fatigue, low mood, irritability, and interpersonal distancing. People who reported feeling exhausted were more likely to experience these symptoms instead of detachment or low efficacy. This indicates that burnout may not be a separate issue.

The researchers point out that the findings shouldn’t lead people to dismiss burnout. It’s a real issue that likely affects millions of people, especially high achievers. The goal of the research was to help burnout receive the same concern given to depression. The same steps used to combat depression in the workplace may also help fight burnout. The group of researchers recommend that changes to workplace policies may provide relief. However, you also have the power to relieve yourself of stress.

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Positive psychology offers many solutions for combating depression, including NLP. Neuro-linguistic programming involves developing strategies for gaining better control of your emotions. You can fight depression with positivity. High-achieving professionals can benefit from increased mental stamina and resilience. Some of the most common techniques include meta-modelling and reframing.

Meta-modelling helps you question generalisations, distortions, and deletions. These types of thoughts limit happiness and increase anxiety. NLP meta-modelling challenges these thoughts to alter your thinking patterns. Reframing helps you change your perception of specific thoughts or behaviours. For example, you can find hope in previously hopeless situations. You achieve this by positively reframing feelings or events.

Along with meta-modelling and reframing, I’d recommend meditation and relaxation techniques. NLP can help you achieve a more relaxed state. A relaxed mind provides better emotional regulation. You may find the previous techniques easier to practice with a clear mind.

Depression and burnout both lead to detachment, low professional efficacy, and exhaustion. These symptoms also lead to negative thoughts that keep you from finding a way out. I can help you replace negativity with positivity through effective NLP techniques. To learn more, view my one-to-one coaching services and online courses at