Preventing burnout under the heat of college | 2022 Health Wellness | – The Shorthorn

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Updated: October 23, 2022 @ 2:58 pm

As academic and social responsibilities pile up, many students are bound to experience the effects of burnout. 
Burnout is when people endure stress about everything being a human entails, such as life and school, that they’re no longer able to emotionally engage anymore, UTA counseling specialist Ashlee Rodriguez said.  
“If you stop being worried about being on time to things, if you start giving yourself excuses to miss some classes, this sort of this buildup of less engagement can kind of be a warning sign,” Rodriguez said. “Especially if that’s something you’re passionate about.”
Physical consequences like exhaustion or illness often accompany the cold-body sensation of “being done,” she said. 
International business junior Briana Ortiz said whenever she’s faced burnout, she becomes moody and stressed and only wants to sleep. 
Ortiz said she burned out the most in high school by taking high school and college-level courses while also working. She said she learned a lot from that experience  to better balance her schedule now. 
“You also need to make sure that you’re taking care of yourself and not pushing yourself too much to the point where you lose interest or happiness in the things you’re wanting to do,” she said. 
Business analytics sophomore Sayesha Sethi said burnout affects her sleep. 
“I get really sleep-deprived, so I have to chug a lot of coffee, which is not good,” Sethi said.
She said she tells herself she can relax after her assignments are finished. Having unfinished academic work makes her anxious, even when she’s trying to take a break.  
Academic life is more than just when a student sits in classes and is connected to emotional burnout, Rodriguez said. 
“I think of architecture students who spend hours into the night working on projects,” she said. “They can be enrolled in the same ‘12 hours’ as somebody else, but the time that they spend working is so much greater, in some instances.” 
Ortiz said she intentionally planned to allow herself time this year for her job and school work by giving herself days without classes. 
“Part of scheduling is allowing flexibility for life,” Rodriguez said. 
She said self-care immediately challenges burnout. Taking time to enjoy yourself, even just one hour a week, can help protect people from too much pressure. 
After burnout, Sethi said she listens to her “burnout aftermath” playlist or watches TV to relax.
She said it’s good for people to keep less on their plate since they can always add more responsibilities later. 
“But to keep more things and then to deduct them, it’s like really hard,” Sethi said. “They should see the big picture and then decide what to put on their plate or not.”
Preventing burnout takes a lot of intentionality, Rodriguez said. Some people pack every minute of their schedule with productive plans, but their brains need some time to be unproductive too. 
“Making sure that your body is still taking care of growth as you’re pursuing these really important things in your life can really just protect you from some of that burnout,” she said. 
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