Burnout in Student Leaders
Being a student leader can be exhausting. It is a risk you take when you push you limits to do something great for your organization, but at a certain point it stops being healthy. Student burnout occurs when “challenging” becomes “overwhelming” and students begin putting themselves in real physical and mental danger.
What is Student Burnout?
Burnout is excessive exhaustion, both mental and physical, from prolonged stress. It comes with a long list of physical and mental symptoms. Even if you have not experienced it yourself you probably know students who have. Have you worked with a student who is enthusiastic, driven, and wildly successful until they become overwhelmed and forced to take a step back? This is the fate of many student leaders that fail to see the warning signs until it is too late.
Am I Burntout?
If you are seriously asking yourself this question then the answer is probably yes. These articles are aimed at serious student leaders. The same drive that makes you invaluable to your organization also makes you a prime candidate for burnout.
College Info Geek has a great article on the symptoms, causes, and solutions to student burnout, so here we will focus specifically on burnout in student leaders. The biggest thing you can do to help beat burnout, and ensure it does not return, is to take a look at your involvement. What can you do to make your extracurricular involvement simpler, easier, and less stressful? You may want to consider delegating more, seeking help from advisers and mentors, looking for advice from articles like this, and leveraging technology to make your workload more manageable. Apps like the Attune app can make it easy to check the status of projects, save you time by helping you communicate more effectively, and even reduce stress on your personal relationships.
Burnout is serious, both for individuals and the organizations they are a part of. Most organizations have stories about their rising stars becoming apathetic after they took on too much. Knowing the signs of burnout can help avert disaster for both you and your organization.