The Common (Yet Neglected) Problem of Burnout Infographic
David Murray, author of Reset: Living a Grace-Paced Life in a Burnout Culture, defines ‘burnout’ as "a state of physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual exhaustion caused by living at too fast a pace for too long, or by living with too many stresses in our lives."
Increasingly, people are reporting experiencing burnout at record rates across all professions, classes, and genders resulting in broken bodies, broken minds, broken hearts, broken marriages, and broken churches.
In September 2016, Crossway sent a survey to over 6,000 readers, asking questions about their experience of burnout, the results of which are presented in the The Common (Yet Neglected) Problem of Burnout Infographic. In total, over six thousand people In total, over six thousand people filled out the survey, offering us a fascinating (albeit sobering) look into this common yet often neglected problem—a problem that affects our society, our workplaces, our churches, and our homes.
Takeaways from the infographic
- Burnout is no respecter of persons. It defies stereotypes and impacts all sorts of people at all stages of life and in every kind of calling.
- Burnout is often caused by an unchecked desire to do more than one should. However, with 70% of burnouts lasting three months or longer and 50% lasting longer than six months, it’s unlikely that overwork ultimately results in greater productivity.
- Burnout usually has multiple interconnecting causes. An imbalance in one area of our lives leads to imbalances in other areas. We cannot overwork our bodies and minds and expect to thrive spiritually and relationally. Neither can we expect to neglect the soul and remain balanced and healthy in other parts of our lives.
- Women are almost twice as likely to seek medical help than men, while men are more liable to fall into sin as a result of burnout. Men’s refusal to seek help often results in moral and spiritual failure.
- More consistent use of the spiritual disciplines prevents burnout because things like prayer and Bible reading not only bring us into God’s restorative presence, but also help us to see ourselves, our responsibilities, and our problems from a divine perspective, resulting in peace and wisdom.