Dealing With Academic Burnout

Dealing With Academic Burnout can be a long process. But don’t lose hope. Learn how to recognise the signs. Find tips on how to recover and what you can do to prevent it.

Feeling constantly stressed, unmotivated and exhausted? You may be suffering from or heading towards burnout. Dealing With Academic Burnout takes time and patience. There is no quick fix, but it’s treatable. Learn how to recognise the symptoms and what steps to take to overcome it right here. 

What is Academic Burnout? 

Academic burnout is a negative emotional, physical and mental reaction to prolonged study. It results in exhaustion, lack of motivation, frustration and reduced academic performance. This doesn’t happen overnight. It takes weeks or sometimes even months to develop. 


This shouldn’t be confused with the occasional frustration and stress that comes with studying. It’s more of a chronic condition. Some of the most common causes are listed below: 

  • Exams 
  • Heavy work or course load 
  • Lack of control or motivation 
  • Bad time management 
  • Financial issues 

Signs and Symptoms to Look for 

Academic burnout symptoms are more than just tiredness and lack of motivation. It can cause real stress-related problems, such as headaches, insomnia and depression. Knowing what to look for can help you prevent it. 


  • Feeling tired and drained all the time 
  • Frequent headaches or muscle pain 
  • Change in appetite or sleep habits 


  • Sense of failure and self-doubt 
  • Feeling helpless, trapped and defeated 
  • Detached from the world 


  • Withdrawing from responsibilities 
  • Skipping classes or coming in late 
  • Isolating from others 
Student using laptop to look for ways of Dealing With Academic Burnout

Difference Between Stress and Burnout 

Burnout may be the result of unrelenting stress, but it isn’t the same as too much stress. If you are stressed, you may feel as if everything is too much for you to handle both mentally and physically. 

Burnout on the other hand, means feeling empty and mentally exhausted. It leaves you feeling devoid of motivation and way beyond caring. People who experience burnout often don’t see hope in positive change. When you are stressed, you will know. Burnout is a lot harder to notice. 

Dealing With Academic Burnout 

If you start recognising the symptoms, then it’s time to make changes before you experience full-blown academic burnout. You can overcome it and prevent it from happening again. Consider the tips and techniques below to guide you. 


Want to learn how you can avoid burnout? Take a look at the list of suggested ways that can help you prevent it. 

  • Make Time for Things you Enjoy – Add activities you love doing to your calendar. This shouldn’t be restricted to just the weekend. It will help you feel motivated to study. 
  • Set Reasonable Goals – Use a study schedule to help you plan your goals and stick to it. Set daily reminders that will help you meet your deadlines. 
  • Become One With Nature – Studies have shown that spending time outdoors can reduce your stress levels. Use your free time to visit a garden or park and breath in the fresh air. 


If you think you might have academic burnout, there are methods you can use to overcome it. Don’t be afraid to make the move to recovery. 

  • Seek Help – There’s no shame in asking for help. Speaking to a professional or someone you trust can help you deal with burnout. 
  • Recognise Symptoms – Knowing what to look for can help prevent going through academic burnout again. Don’t ignore the signs. 
  • Manage Your Stress – Managing your stress levels and making changes can reverse the burnout. Set aside time to relax. 

Achieve Your Goals, Overcome Academic Burnout!

Choose a college that cares. Explore our range of distance learning courses and take advantage of our stellar student support. Contact our course experts to learn more by: 

Last Updated: 13 November 2020