Burn Out

Response to stress is not triggered by reasoning or thinking power! 


Primitive reactions are predominant under stress. And they are much faster to express than thinking reactions.  


Numerous are the examples when you have taken actions before you had thought about them. When you crashed in tears or exploded in anger before you actually realized. And instinctual body reactivity is the first to express. 


IQ and rational reasoning have proved to be insufficient to produce well-balanced managers. Harmony in connections between emotional and prefrontal brain structures is the beauty of EQ, Emotional Intelligence.  


Observed since the industrial revolution and ‘management era’, burn outs occur when stress becomes chronic and/or when sources of stress are multiple. The permanent stimulation of metabolism leads to body and/or mental exhaustion. 


Workload, traffic in transport are traditional sources of chronic stress. Conflict is also a primary source of burn out. And “technostress” caused by never ending ICT evolution and dependence becomes a significant source of managers’ exhaustion through cognitive saturation. 


Preliminary signs of Burn Out  


are both emotional and physical  


Frequently, people loose sense of humor, don’t smile, show dissatisfaction, impatience, delegation becomes a difficulty. The person shows irritability and shows difficulty to accept feedback or to build a discussion pitch or an argument… 


In parallel, frequent physical signs are fatigue, loss of energy, isolation, sleeping troubles, early morning awakenings, ruminations over deadlines to achieve, over conflicts to solve, or difficulty to fall asleep… Pain in the rachis, neck pain, back pain. 


Hypertension, ulcers, insomnia and weakening of immune defenses are frequent alarm signs for latent Burn Out. 


Profiles at risk 


Profiles at risk for Burn Out are 


  • Highly invested employee 
  • The Perfectionist type of manager 
  • employee who has difficulty to say no 
  • Company-devoted profile 
  • Always on-the-go type 
  • Always available profiles 
  • ICT non-stop connected managers 


It also appears that those who had previous experience of burn out are susceptible to relapse.  


Bounce back on Burn Out  


Listening to Managers who experienced professional exhaustion, burn out is probably a chance to step back, then bounce back sustainably into more aligned performances.  


Of course, at LEDOUBLECOACH we realize some professional environments aren’t really “natural” environment for managers to flourish easily. But lessons to take away from Burn Out are beautifully worth.  They need to be smoothly integrated over time, through experiences.  


Otherwise, people may shift, as a natural tendency, back to the ”good old original one” they had constructed over time.



 Pascal Ledouble
Consultant & Coach

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