11 Signs You’re More Than Just Tired…You’re Burning Out

signs you're burning out

Ever wonder if you’re burning out? I know a lot of leaders and people who wonder that.

There’s a fine line between being tired and actually burning out.

The challenge is, once you cross the line, it’s so difficult to get back.

Eleven years ago, I entered into the darkest period of my life. People had always warned me I would burn out. I thought I could prove them wrong. And usually I did. I would get tired – out of balance – but when I saw the edge, I could always pull myself back.

That approach worked just fine until the summer of 2006, when it didn’t.

In that fateful summer eleven years ago, I found the edge, and as I was falling, I knew this time I realized I couldn’t pull myself back.

Although I’m not a person who suffers from depression, I’m sure I would have gone to the doctor and received a diagnosis of clinical depression that summer when I fell off the edge.

Perhaps it wasn’t a stereotypical depression.

I could get out of bed every day, and I did.

As a Christian, I kept praying and reading my bible. I never lost my faith (I just couldn’t feel it).

People who weren’t that close to me didn’t realize it was happening.

But I knew something inside me had broken, and I didn’t know how to fix it.

My speed decreased to a snail’s pace.

Hope felt like it had died.

My motivation and passion dropped to zero. (Make that zero Kelvin).

Like most people who experience burnout, it felt like a strange land. I had been tired before, but I had never truly been burned out. It was so disorienting I didn’t know what to do.

What terrified me is that I knew many in ministry and life had gone down this road before me and some of them never made it back.

For them, ministry was done. And sometimes, tragically, they were done – hope never fully returned and they didn’t ever become the person they were before.

That was the last thing I wanted to happen to me.

Looking back, the diagnosis is still a little elusive and mysterious.

Who really knows what corrodes the soul to the point where it deflates?

But I’d say the most likely candidate for what derailed me is what I’d call emotional burnout. 

In caring for others I had not adequately cared for my heart or soul, or let others who wanted to care for it do so.

I spiralled down for about 3 months before I hit bottom.

Then with the love and assistance of a great wife, board, leadership team, close friends, a counselor, and a very gracious God, I slowly began to recover.

It took, honestly, a few years to really feel full stride again, but I recovered to 80-90% of full strength in the first year. The last 10% took two or three more years.

The good new is, there is life after burnout (my next post will be on ways to recover from burnout).

I’m writing this because burnout seems to be an epidemic among leaders and, increasingly, among people in general.

Maybe you’re right on the edge of the cliff right now. Or maybe you’re in free fall.

So how do you know if you’re more than just tired? How do you know if you’re burning out?

Here are 11 things I personally experienced as I burned out.

I hope they can help you see the edge before you careen past it.

1. Your passion fades

Everybody struggles with passion from time to time, but burnout moves you into a place of sustained motivation loss.

Think about it, for those of you in leadership or ministry, you used to have a passion for what you did. Passion got you into leadership, and it’s one of the factors that makes both life and leadership wonderful over a long period of time.

But when I burned out, my passion set like the sun.

I knew what I was doing was important (leading a local church), but I couldn’t feel it anymore.

I realized that a passionless leader will never lead a passionate ministry. But I just couldn’t find my passion anymore.

2. Your main emotion is ‘numbness’ – you no longer feel the highs or the lows

If you’re healthy, you feel things. You experience highs and lows.

When I burned out, I couldn’t feel either properly anymore.

If someone was celebrating the birth of a new child, I couldn’t feel happy. I just felt numb.

If someone was sick or fell into trouble, I couldn’t feel for them either. I just felt numb.

Burnout numbs your heart, and this was actually one of the earliest signs for me that the edge was near.

3. Little things make you disproportionately angry

It’s not that burned out people feel zero emotion, but I know when I burned out, the emotions I felt were often just wrong.

One early sign I was heading for burnout was that little things started to set me off. Something (like a missed deadline) might be a 3 out of 10 on the problem scale, but I would react like it was an 11. That’s never good.

Treating small things like they are big things is a sign something deeper is wrong.

4. Everybody drains you 

People are a mixed bag for sure. Some energize you. Some don’t. I get that. On this side of heaven, that’s life.

But when I burned out, I realize nobody energized me anymore. Not even my family, my friends or my leadership team.

In my head I knew they were good people, but my heart couldn’t feel it.

When nobody energizes you, they’re not the problem. You are.

5. You’re becoming cynical

Oh, cynicism. It’s hard not to become cynical as you age (here’s why).

But cynicism never finds a home in a healthy heart.

If you find your cynicism is advancing at a rapid rate, it may be a sign you’re burning out.

6. Nothing satisfies you

One of the hardest aspects of burnout for me was that nothing seemed to satisfy me.

Sleep didn’t. Prayer didn’t. Good people didn’t. Recreation didn’t. Vacation didn’t. Work didn’t. Food didn’t.

That’s a sign of depression, and it’s also a sign you’re burnt out.

7. You Can’t Think Straight

When you’re burning out, your heart messes with your head; you lose the ability to think straight.

I remember having read enough and listened to enough about mid-life crises and burnout to know that people make stupid decisions when they’re burnt out.

My emotions made me think I would always be this bad. That I was a failure. That there was no hope. That I should just quit.

So I had this daily conversation with myself that boiled down to five words: Just don’t do anything stupid. 

For me, that meant not doing three things. I told myself, Carey, don’t:

Quit your job

Have an affair

Buy a sports car

By the grace of God, I did none of the three. The first two are still part of my long term plan, but one day I think it would be fun to have a sports car.

Some days, simply avoiding stupid is a win.

8. Your productivity is dropping

One sign I knew I was in burnout was incredibly low productivity.

I’m usually a fairly productive leader and person (some would say highly productive). But when I fell into burnout, even writing a simple email might take an hour.

I couldn’t think straight. My pace slowed right down, and I felt like there was a cloud between me and everything I was trying to do.

If you’re working long hours but producing little of value, you might be burning out.

9.  You’re self-medicating

In the early stages of burnout, many people turn to self-medicating to numb the pain.

Whether that’s overeating, overworking,  sexual addictions, drinking, impulsive spending or even drugs, you’ve chosen a path of self-medication over self-care.

I avoided drinking, drugs or sex. My poison was, ironically, more work, which just spirals things downward.

People who are burning out almost always choose self-medication over self-care.

10. You don’t laugh anymore

This is such a small thing that’s actually such a big thing.

If you’re burning out, you don’t laugh a lot. I remember in my recovery laughing out loud one day after listening to something on the radio. It was then that it hit me: it had been months since I had laughed out loud.

When you’re burning out, nothing seems fun or funny, and, at its worst, you begin to resent people who enjoy life.

11. Sleep and time off no longer refuel you

If you’re just tired, a good night’s sleep or a week or two off will help most healthy people bounce back with fresh energy.

If you’re burning out, sleep and time off no longer refuel you. You could have a month off when you’re burnt out and not feel any difference.

I took three weeks off during my summer of burn out, and I felt worse at the end than when I started. Not being refueled when you take time off is a major warning sign that you’re burning out.

So Are You More Than Just Tired?

So how do you know if you’re burning out?

Identifying with just a few of these signs might just be a sign that you’re tired.

If you identify with half, you might be close to the edge.

If you identify with most or all, well, you might be in the same place I found myself—burnout.

And if you think you’re burning out, I would encourage you to seek immediate professional help – a medical doctor and a trained Christian counselor.  I would also encourage you to talk to a close circle of friends (again, my next post will be on recovery from burnout).

In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you and what you’re seeing when it comes to fatigue and burnout.

11 Signs You’re More Than Just Tired…You’re Burning Out


  1. Steel on January 4, 2022 at 1:16 pm

    The finding satisfaction in nothing really hits home. I mean, I have fun and hang out with friends and whatnot, but I am starting to hate working ( I have never been very fond of having to work if im honest), I have grown tired of my relationship with my lady, etc. I feel like I should be expressing so much more than I am. I have no passion for anything. I honestly don’t know what I love to do aside from whatever I want to do that day. Can’t really talk to anyone about it because my spiritual views are not something anyone else would understand unless he/she shared them. The whole “purpose” thing is so cliché. If I have one, then God has hidden it from my site so deeply that He can’t blame me for not following it. Im so over it.

  2. JesseA on December 27, 2021 at 10:12 pm

    Awesome… thanks for sharing this informative and well-researched article on fatigue. Although I read such blogs on iahas.com where they explained about fatigue and ayurvedic remedies to treat this. Your blog is really educative and I will add your blog to my list.

  3. SS on December 22, 2021 at 2:37 pm

    I too am suffering from burnout BIG TIME! Usually I can bounce back from it, but this is a bad case. My step-dad passes away, mandatory overtime (I work in a high stress environment) make decisions that can cost lives, one slip and someone gets hurt or worse. I’m exhausted all the time, I can’t eat a decent meal without getting sick, running on 3 to 4 hours of sleep except on the days I DON’T have to work, when I do sleep it’s a not good sleep. I’m grateful for the friends in my life that kept me teetering over the edge and of course my sweetheart who is the calm to my chaos.

  4. Kat on December 13, 2021 at 7:00 am

    I can tick off every one these you mentioned. Glad I’m not alone. Even though I feel like I am. Nobody around me gets it. There’s no break. No slowing down. No reprieve. I’m so tired.

    • Shawn on January 7, 2022 at 4:40 am

      No one gets it. You nailed with that line…no one gets it and no one cares. Laugh and the world laughs with you. Cry and they leave you alone.

    • Caitlyn Kerlee on January 11, 2022 at 9:59 am

      I am completely burnt out. Think I have been for years but didn’t recognize it, falling into unhealthy habits, high levels of resentment, little joy or pleasure(even on antidepressants at this point and having convos with my loss prevention team at work weekends aren’t enough, vacations aren’t enough every little thing feels like a chore and amounts to being a huge mountain I can’t climb. Oh the cynicism. Constantly cynical, doubting myself believing the deepest about myself and thinking other people think they same thing even though they’ve never said anything to cause that belief in me.

  5. Lily on December 6, 2021 at 4:29 am

    Good day! I just wanted to let you know that I’m feeling lost. I’m not sure if I’m just weary or if I’m genuinely on edge because of this burnout feeling. All of the signs seem to point to me. I don’t know what to do.  I’m not sure where I am anymore, and it sucks to be stuck in this nowhere place. I’m no longer productive. I don’t have motivations to do my school works and other responsibilities. Even if I sleep a lot, I constantly feel drained. I can’t seem to find joy in anything. I continued to play games since it was the only way I could have fun. I tend to overthink things. I pray every day, but I’m still exhausted. I can’t tell my friends because I know they are also dealing with their own issues. I can’t even tell my parents about it since they’d think I was influenced by the internet if I did. They don’t understand me and they never will because from the start I’ve been drifting away from them. I’m already lost. I have no idea what life is all about either. I’ve just realized that I must work hard in order to survive. I try to figure out what is the reason why I am like this. But I’m still unsure. I just know I’m exhausted and under a lot of pressure, but I’m mostly numb. I have no idea where I’m headed. The older I become, the more difficult life becomes for me. I am emotionally and physically drained. This is not okay at all. It’s difficult for me dealing this every day in my life.

    Hope you understand me. But it’s okay if you don’t. Thank you.

  6. Lily on December 6, 2021 at 4:23 am

    Good day! I just wanted to let you know that I’m feeling lost. I’m not sure if I’m just weary or if I’m genuinely on edge because of this burnout feeling. All of the signs seem to point to me. I don’t know what to do.  I’m not sure where I am anymore, and it sucks to be stuck in this nowhere place. I’m no longer productive. Even if I sleep a lot, I constantly feel drained. I can’t seem to find joy in anything. I continued to play games since it was the only way I could have fun. I tend to overthink things. I pray every day, but I’m still exhausted. I can’t tell my friends because I know they are also dealing with their own issues. I can’t even tell my parents about it since they’d think I was influenced by the internet if I did. They don’t understand me and they never will because from the start I’ve been drifting away from them. I’m already lost. I have no idea what life is all about either. I’ve just realized that I must work hard in order to survive. I try to figure out what is the reason why I am like this. But I’m still unsure. I just know I’m exhausted and under a lot of pressure, but I’m mostly numb. I have no idea where I’m headed. The older I become, the more difficult life becomes for me. I am emotionally and physically drained. This is not okay at all. It’s difficult for me dealing this every day in my life.

    Hope you understand me. But it’s okay if you don’t. Thank you.

  7. Aylin Knook on November 3, 2021 at 4:05 pm

    My girlfriend is having some issues and I am scared she is gonna be in a big problem later so i’d like to request for professional attention my last time doing this it kicked me out saying i’ve done this and I haven’t and I want to make sure my girlfriend gets all the attention she may need to get the problems sorted and handled with care Thank you (number at +31 6 11460359

  8. Aylin Knook on November 3, 2021 at 3:58 pm

    My girlfriend is feeling these emotions and it’s scaring me and I want what is best for her so i’d like to get more advice and you know more official? To see if it could be handled by a professional to help fix the issues (Number at +31 6 11460359 Hope it works out well

  9. Aylin Knook on November 3, 2021 at 3:49 pm

    My girlfriend is feeling these emotions and it’s scaring me and I want what is best for her so i’d like to get more advice and you know more official? To see if it could be handled by a professional to help fix the issues (Number at +31 6 11460359

    • Jonathan on January 5, 2022 at 6:37 am

      Thanks for the message I think I’m at the edge after reading your post… But 1 thing different from you.. Think I might not be strong enough as I’m also a stroke survivor.. Anyway thxs for the post.

  10. IM HAPEAD orginaly (ANIM3Foru) bruh why do i even have to use dumb names ;> on October 24, 2021 at 7:29 am

    Hahahahahahaaha i can just laugh about how dumb ive become rn it just hurts becuase its like forgotting who you are but burnout,dead,empty,lifeless bros – its not easy but lets just look into the future. Guys i beg you if ur reading this STOP dont think about this and continue what makes u HAPPY the more you think about it, the more burned your gonna BECOME. in the end the problem all comes from the brain i mean come on breh :/ ive beat my meat all day long and i didnt feel a thing, some of the glue didnt even come out :/ JUST dont think about who you used to be and dont look in the past. time may have stop for you but breh just think i wanna die but thats who you are now, Just ONE THING that i suggest you is to watch ISEKAI ANIME im gonna sugest watching ( The Sheild hero/darker than black/Arifureta/Sao/grimgar of fantasy and ash ) coming from a die hard pASSIONE dumb otaku whos just a dull lifeless otaku who.. Guys i think… guys some things are better off without knowing Just watch it. It may seem a joke and all but im serious dude. Give a time for Anime and im sure youll never regret it. GUYS what your feeling right now is just one/tenth of this experience so dont think about it or it will worsen just watch ANIME i beg you, give time for Anime. Guys i or maybe we wanna cry but men i cant cry, cant laugh… Oh chotto matte(wait a minute) I just told you to stop thinkimg about it but breh here i am thinking about it ;/ anyways yall better give time to yourself and Watch ANIME or ill become Happy.

    • thinks everyone is high on November 3, 2021 at 2:11 pm

      are you high?

  11. Ruj on October 16, 2021 at 6:24 am

    I ticked all of them. I think I am in the worst part of my life. I am unhappy, unsatisfied. I think it’s affecting my marriage because I think my constant unhappiness annoys and frustrates him.

    I am seeing a psychologist but she’s only helpful when I talk to her but the moment I finish the call with her. I am same.

    I bag to God everyday to help me to get out of this but its not working. I don’t know why people misbehaves with me when I am trying to do everything that can make them happy.

    I am just done with everything.

    I tool Astrazeneca vaccine with a hope that I might get blood clots and ill die naturally so no one in my family feels bad about it. :'(

    • Give me the Big Red Button on October 26, 2021 at 3:45 pm

      Ruj – me too on the AstraZeneca.

    • Coucou on November 9, 2021 at 8:06 pm

      I get it… I am tired… i have all those… I do want to die… but, I cannot do it because I do not want to traumatized my son… that is the thing stopping me.

      Huge hug.
      You are not alone. One day at a time

  12. Stephen Kenechi on October 14, 2021 at 6:53 pm

    I ticked at least nine of the 11 items on this list. Stuck, uninspired, emotionally drained, and irritable are the words that describe it. You no more find pleasure in what you once so much enjoyed and you can’t help it. You’ve tried to do things differently but it doesn’t make you any happier. Even when it does, it’s only momentary and you’re back where you began a couple of days down the line. Weeks, months pass and your productivity suffers so much so that others vaguely remark about you not being as energetic as they had once known. You’re obsessed with staying organised.

    You plan so much, yet, you’re dragging on tasks and always behind schedule. You’ve tried workouts but, even when you stay consistent, it ends up blending into the pattern—becoming more of a routine than a working solution. Panic attacks, occasionally chronic anxiety, and short-lived bouts of depression are all familiar experiences during which you constantly question your own decisions, speak with restraint to avoid being misinterpreted, and fear you might one day do something stupid. You can’t talk to most people about how you feel because they are more shallow-minded than they realise. You’re not the religious type either, not in a clime where admonitions by the clergy, far from being realistic, address anything but the problem. You maintain a deadpan countenance; you’re unfazed and calm in appearance but screaming for help on the inside. In every word lies a subtle cry for help—help you know you desperately need, yet, can’t ask for it.

    • karenblahey@gmail.com on October 20, 2021 at 9:26 am

      To the point cause I wish I well sounds like same as me . Yet that’s not enough knowing that would help. Like so what!! Then do something concrete about our trapped feeling…if I may give respectable insight. You are probably a achieve r. Done alot. And some what okay with that. Then u must do this to feel better. Cause it worked for me. It will sound off but here goes. It is called the karen major recharge movement. Lay down back to the earth on the ground . Head to the south and press your body into the earth. Grass whatever surface your on. . then think . delete.clear cache just clear the volume of junk energy from your body and now you can slowly recharge your body ..it’s my method .it worked for me and you can email me back ..I don’t care if it makes you feel mad or crazy to try this..but it worked for me ….

  13. Mo on October 3, 2021 at 3:16 pm

    I am serving as a missionary overseas as a single older adult and am experiencing burnout for the first time. In fact my counselor and I just determined this was the problem last week. It’s a scary place to be. God dropped your podcast interview you did with Annie F. Downs in my lap. Timing was perfect. I’m making changes. I have a sabbatical coming up in 2 months and I hope to not be limping into it. Thank you for sharing your story and your work.

  14. Mykal Karl on September 24, 2021 at 5:35 am

    There is a typo in number 7 that reads as if having an affair is a part of your long term plan. Thought you’d want to know. Brave post. Thank you.

  15. Michelle on September 6, 2021 at 11:11 pm

    Help me please. Burn out for me is a huge understatement. Don’t know how to continue. There is no one to reach out to, no way of taking a break, no one to help. Have tried all I know to do. My body can’t keep going, physically or mentally. Don’t even have the energy to give you the background story. Need this to end.

    • Shelly on September 7, 2021 at 5:31 pm

      Hi Michelle,
      I feel you. I understand. Maybe we can help each other. I’m sending you heart hugs. I hope you feel better soon. You are not alone. You can reach out to me. I hope we can not be too tired to connect. I wonder if I will find my way back to this site?

      Your Friend,

    • Carey Nieuwhof on September 9, 2021 at 9:27 am

      Hi Michelle, I’m so sorry. Don’t give up – the sun will shine again. First, reach out to a professional and tell someone you love right away. Someone you trust. These are also some things that helped me recover when I felt the way you do now. https://careynieuwhof.com/how-i-recovered-from-burn-out-12-keys-to-getting-back/ A professional counsellor was also a key part of my recovery. Don’t give up, you won’t feel like this forever. I’m so sorry.

      • Meep on December 2, 2021 at 6:07 pm

        I feel burnt out as well, but i cannot reach out to anyone i trust as my own mother emotionally abused me for 14+ years (currently 15) and she got me to the point where i physically cannot trust anyone.

    • C on September 12, 2021 at 5:24 pm

      “Don’t even have the energy to give you the backround story” I felt that deep in my soul. “No way of taking a break” It’s like there is an on switch that is stuck and draining your battery slowly sucking the light out of you with a straw. Sometimes just identifying with how it feels like I am writing right now helps me preserve some of my light and gives me the posibility of revival. Identify. You wrote on this page- so you are reaching out- so there IS someone to talk to. You are continuing. There is a void in you that can only be filled by something outside yourself. As far as you tip the scale one way- it will tip the opposite way just as much. So you keep working yourself more than you should be or can physically handle that will catch up with you. Maybe not right away but it will. And now is the perfect time to find a balance or build up to one. yin and yang. you are out of balance. Just because you don’t FEEL the hope and faith- knowing that they ARE there is sometimes good enough. it’s like getting surgery and not feeling the pain because you are medicated. you know the pain is there you just can’t feel it because it is being blocked- the pain receptors are being blocked. Your light is being blocked. Youneed to cling on to any light you see. even a sweet little bird flying. someone else laughing. it will add up. it’s like sparking a fire with a stick and a rock it doesn’t seem like anything is happening st first but then you see smoke and then smoke leads to fire. and that is your hope. <3

    • Leanne on September 19, 2021 at 8:59 am

      Hi Michelle, I am not a medical professional but I have gone through burn out in the last six months. I would recommend finding a good family doctor to talk to and seeking out Christian counseling. Sometimes you might have to look around for a doctor that is actually willing to listen to you but don’t give up until you find one. They may recommend short term medication, and whether you do that or not I recommend seeking out a good Christian counselor. it may take a time or two to find a good Christian counselor, but don’t give up. what you’re going through right now seems really dark and hard, and what I can say is about six months into the healing process it does get better! after just a couple months it got better. I had to take a leave of absence from work, and I recommend that if it’s something you can do. I will be praying for you. just keep asking God to guide your steps and he will!!!

    • Rob on November 5, 2021 at 6:19 pm

      Meditation is the answer. Im not talking about praying to to the supernatural. Im talking about real meditation

      • Peas on December 29, 2021 at 1:48 pm

        Hi Rob,
        What is real meditation without prayer?
        Please reveal more details? Sources? Meditate, where, when, & how? This will help those who are interested in trying meditation. Looking forward to your response.

  16. Dustin on August 5, 2021 at 10:13 am

    This comment is mostly for others to look into, but also for me if there are any informative replies. This article presents burnout in a way that’s very similar to what I’ved heard referred to as dark night of the soul. In the far east it’s said that this period in a persons life is a major opportunity for spiritual advancement. I tend to think that it’s due to the almost universally indifferent attitude. During such a time pleasure and pain hold almost no meaning and the thoughts become involuntarily still due to the indifference. It’s really no fun, it’s like you’re empty and alone in space. The longer it goes on, the more you begin looking for a way to break through it. I guess what I hope to find out is: from a Christian perspective, what passages or teachings are basically tailor made to bring you through this kind of darkness?

    • Carey Nieuwhof on August 5, 2021 at 12:23 pm

      Hey Dustin!

      I should have a Youversion plan that will be centered around this topic coming out sometime in the next month or so. Do you think that could help?

      • Greg on August 17, 2021 at 12:03 pm


        A YouVersion plan would be great! If it is still coming out, I would be very interested. Earlier this summer I realized that most of these signs applied to me, and I began seeing a licensed counselor for the first time in my life, although I realize that I should have sought out a counselor a long time ago. But I kept kicking the can down the road, thinking I could always pull myself back and that counselors were for “other people.” Thank you so much for your encouragement, and I absolutely love your podcast! I started listening to it regularly this summer as I have tried to get into a habit of walking for an hour every morning.

      • SIBONGILE CHIMBAZA on August 18, 2021 at 2:06 am

        Hello Carey.

        I didn’t know where to click to find my own space to reply so I just came here. (Hope you don’t mind).
        I’m only 18 years old and can relate to most of the symptoms of burnout that have been posted here. For example, I find myself feeling psychologically fatigued most of the time. I sometimes reach the point where I am tired of everything in my life, everything has become boring. I have far less excitement now from the things that have been exciting me all my early teenage and childhood. I ask myself why I am no longer motivated to do what I’m passionate about: pursuing my medical studies to serve God in them. I don’t understand how all of the sudden, the greatest effort I have been putting in things before now yields different results. I’ve known myself to be excellent but it’s not the same anymore. I’m working longer hours and trying to be at my best in every single thing but it all comes to no avail. (I’m used to planning things and even though I do it now, it hasn’t made my life any better in my work ethic and how I handle things as an individual (chores, my schedules, my responsibilities as a leader, and how I live with people)). Because I’m drained by all this, sometimes I procrastinate more, I find myself dragging in all I do. And I don’t know what I’m doing. But all I want is to fulfill the duty that God has placed me on this earth for. And yet I’m tired of everything and don’t know what’s coming next. It’s all blurry now; because if I had seen the fruit of all my work, I would have been hopeful. But I feel hopeless and helpless since nobody I know understands what I’m talking about. So sometimes I just want to stop and sit down. Because I’m becoming a different person, I’m not passionate about the lives of others anymore, I can’t feel the love. Instead, I’ve grown to want to deal with this situation more in my life (it’s been 2 years since it began). Everything is just becoming too much for me. I don’t want to handle it anymore, it wearies my soul. I haven’t found a gripping inspiration. (I hope I haven’t misunderstood this post though). Is this what it really feels like to be burnt-out?

        • Carey Nieuwhof on August 18, 2021 at 11:46 am

          Hi Sibongile,
          I’m so sorry. You’re not alone in any of those feelings and, yes, I’d say that is what it feels like when you feel burnt-out. The past two years were a lot, and we are all still in the midst of processing it all. How often to you give yourself space to rest, feel, even grieve? I also wrote about ways that helped me recover here: https://careynieuwhof.com/how-i-recovered-from-burn-out-12-keys-to-getting-back/ and I personally advocate for finding an excellent, trusted professional counsellor to help you navigate what you’re feeling. So valuable.
          I also developed a burnout quiz that might help you answer your question for yourself, too. https://careynieuwhof.com/at-your-best-burnout-quiz/
          Hope this helps.

          • SIBONGILE CHIMBAZA on September 2, 2021 at 10:22 am

            I’ll do just that. Thank you so much.
            And I’m going through the emails I’ve been receiving lately; they’re hitting the nails right on the head and I know exactly what I can do now. I’ll just follow up on the very first ones so that I check out the quiz.
            May God bless you.🙏 I don’t know how to thank you

      • Sara on January 10, 2022 at 3:56 pm

        Did you ever complete this YouVersion plan?? I have checked off all 11 boxes on the burnout list. I am a Christian (born-again) mom to 2 special needs children whom I stay home with and I desperately need some hope these days. I feel my faith slipping away even though I love Jesus with my entire being.

    • Shani on August 8, 2021 at 1:32 am

      Jonah chapter 2
      2 Cor 4:7-9
      These really help me.

    • Rob L on September 2, 2021 at 10:59 am

      I feel I’m stuck too. After reading the 11 signs I think I’m clinically depressed. I never thought of myself as being depressed but it makes sense now. I’m not sure what to do with that. I just feel stuck.

    • Rob on November 5, 2021 at 6:23 pm

      Stop looking to someone else for answers. Sit and breath. Pay attention to your inhale and exhale. When thoughts come just let them pass like clouds. The will get in touch with your higher self. The truth is when you’re always living by faith in someone elses words you will always have doubts. Look within and you will find the answers

  17. Abraham Clemons on August 2, 2021 at 7:26 pm

    I find myself wondering what’s this life for .I’m always working never do anything fun I’m just so tired of this same thing for the last 33 years work work work I’m so tired

    • Shani on August 4, 2021 at 4:56 am

      Then do something fun. . . The choice is yours.

    • Carey Nieuwhof on August 5, 2021 at 12:32 pm

      Hey Abraham,

      I was in a similar place as you. Have you gone and explained that to a licensed counselor? They really helped me learn how to move forward and actually find joy again (I know that’s hard for you to believe is possible right now, but it is!)

      I really hope you can find a solid counselor and a coach to help you through this season.

    • Marwan on August 24, 2021 at 9:24 pm

      same here. 🙁
      I have great faith but I don’t feel it sometimes. Being married man with job i dont like. I immigrated to Canada and was shocked too. I started two new careers in flying and coaching soccer as they’ve been always my passion. Studying in aviation is stressful financially. I lost both interests and now doing some delivery job to maintain both (flying and soccer) as I can’t commit to stable job but only flexible job to pursue them. Honestly, they are not a nig deal anymore. Im still 36 but the symptoms above are existing and Im tired of everything.

  18. Lisham Paris Chanu on July 26, 2021 at 7:54 am

    I am a 31 years old pursuing PhD in Physics. But the burden of my career is so high that I want to take a break. I want to get married and have a baby. I have been thinking about age for fertility also because I want kids. Family of my own is more important to me. because I am over 30. but the major problem is that my mother is not approving me of getting married before getting the PhD degree. she is so abusing, how could she doesn’t think of my life and interfere me like that? I have tried to understand her and talk to her many times but she never understood. she is destroying my happiness. I decided to leave my mother. Am I wrong in this?

    • Meh on July 28, 2021 at 10:01 am

      NH parents are generally toxic live your lifw

  19. Margo MacDougall on July 14, 2021 at 9:47 am

    Hello Heart,

    I’m Margo. I read your comment and am praying for you to get through this terrible time.

    I believe that God is showing us just what life will be like without Him…for those who have not yet accepted that they need a Saviour–THE Saviour–in a world that is so dominated by sin and brokenness.

    Jesus did for that brokenness and that sin, and He wants to save us all from it…but not until as many come to know Him personally through believing that He died for them, individually, lovingly, eternally paying the penalty for all this sin.

    I am so thankful that you have come to know God personally through a relationship with Jesus Christ, and that His Spirit is giving you a heart that is broken for those around you. Sometimes, our family is the most difficult to reach out to with the Good News of Jesus, so I would really encourage you to pray for them…pray that someone else will share the Good News with them in a way that they will understand what Jesus has done, what He wants to do in their lives, and what He is already doing in your life.

    Then, I’d encourage you to find someone (just one, for now) that you can pray for, whose family perhaps isn’t available to them, either. And I’d encourage you to pray that God would give/show you opportunities to share the goodness and love of Jesus with that ONE person. Once you begin to see God working through you, you might want to ask Him to show you another person that you can pray for and approach with the News of Jesus, and what He has done in your life.

    When we look at the whole world and all that is going on, and when we look at our own family, who seem so remote from knowing what God can do in their lives and circumstances, it can become VERY overwhelming. BUT–and that’s an important but–God will pull you out of the mirage of paralyzing quicksand that satan (I refuse to capitalize that father of lies’ name) has set up in front of you. It is a MIRAGE!! It isn’t really there! With God, all things are possible.

    May you see God’s working in your life TODAY and each time you turn to Him for comfort and strength.

    You have already encouraged me by your broken-heartedness–that’s the paradox of Christ in our lives–He can bless others through us, even while He heals us from our woundedness.

    M <.

    • Lucia Adler on July 17, 2021 at 12:35 am

      I once prayed and I once believed in God’s goodness and in his love. After 57 years of holding on to that illusion I finally realized that religion is just another lie sold to humans so they can cope with a shitty life. I have never known love not from God and not from humans and I know I’m not alone. God says the most important thing is love. Well he failed miserably at being a father to me and to many others. What I learned is that life is random and so is love and luck. Some have all of it or enough and some have none. The most miserable and most awful people I met where in church. The author of this article says he recovered with the help of his wife and friends and God. Well not all of us have loving spouses or friends or a loving God. Love can heal the absence of love can destroy even the most stoic of hearts. As far as I’m concerned god is a failure as a loving god or father or saviour. At least for some of us

      • mitchell Starnes on July 20, 2021 at 3:47 pm

        In Feb of 1983 i lost my 2nd born son , 6 week s after our home burnt to the ground. I spent the next 9 months working to clear the old home site and rebuild. I went for 6 months on 3 to 4 hours a night and poured concrete during the day. I was so just completely used up. This didn’t push me away form God but brought me closer. My Wife and 1st born had just walked out of the house on a unusually warm Feb day so she could read to him, Then the windows blew out of the left side of the house and the fire was unstoppable. I still had them by the Grace of God. On 1999 i lost my best friend on this earth to suicide where he knew i would be the one to find him. His loose was devesting to me. What did i miss? Why would he not talk to me about it ? I thought nothing could ever hurt me like that again. It shocks my faith that i couldn’t save someone so dear to me. My wife defied the odds and gave us a baby boy. He was a hand full. He was a hard one to handle but he was loved very much. He grew into a wonderful young man. Got in a marriage that really took a lot out of him. I watched him suffer when his wife gave birth to a son that was proven not to be his. He worked with me so i knew how he suffered . We talked , I tried so hard to help him. One day he said he was going to the Doctor. I was pleased he was doing this because he needed it. Later that day he sent text to family that he was sorry for all the trouble he caused and that he loved us. I was in the middle of pouring a slab and replied a simple ( K) ! He sent his Mom a text and then no one could get a reply from him. I left work soon as i got poured out to check on him. I assumed i would find him a sleep. I couldn’t get him to the door so i went to a shed out back where he spent a lot of time. I could only get the door open about 6″ so i pushed harder to get in only to find brains every where and my baby son on the floor dead. I went crazy. I tried putting things back where they belong and praying and yelling for god to do something. Do I love God ? Yes more than ever. Without his promise i would never see my son again. Now Casey was saved so i will see him again. Two years later , my wife died while i was talking to her. It’s like a switch was flipped and she was gone. In my arms i lose the love of my life. I am thankful she didn’t suffer (one of her greatest fears). I am no Job as in the Bible but i still love God. My wife could have lay in a sick bed for years in anguish and misery. He gave a Great Christian woman a painless death. I still have my oldest son thank God for Him. So you turn your back on a man that gave his life for your salvation? It’s your call but please thing of how much worse things could have been and could be without God.

        • Shadrach Agyemang on December 6, 2021 at 8:46 am

          No doubt I am inspired
          Here I am sitting in the bathroom thinking about how miserable my life is and how nothing seems to work even thinking it would be best for me to die and by accident I chanced on this page. My life compared to yours sir makes me more than an Elon Musk when it comes to God’s grace and blessings
          For me when ever I think about this life I know surely things will Improve but you know I was foolish
          I wanted God to work my way.
          Reading the thoughts from peoples real life here is a blessing I can never pay back because you see I wanted to give up.
          Now I know my biggest problem is the fact that I have been focusing on other thing other people fixing the world and I have left my self to the wind.
          Though not easy
          I will now focus my attention on my self and I hope you will help me in prayer
          Jesus the Lord of light is right when he said “take the moth out of your eyes before you take the log out of the brothers eyes”
          Once again I am Grateful to God for guiding me to this page and I am sorry for intentionally being disobedient to His word

      • Shani on July 30, 2021 at 4:27 am

        Dear Lucia Adler
        I sense u have been through a lot in life & u are feeling very lonely. This can be a lonely world.
        From the bottom of my heart, I feel for u. To be as alone as u are is very sad and I can be your friend if u like.
        When we go through things, it’s obvious we would say God doesn’t love or care about me, because we always feel he has the power to sort out our life.
        Have u ever read the verse 1 John 5:19 according to that verse a wicked one is ruling the world. . . Remember also that the son of God also suffered in this world, died as a criminal, was slapped, spat on etc and his Father allowed it, why? Because of the bigger picture, that death meant something for the rest of mankind. Why does God allow suffering? Why does he allow a wicked one to rule the world? Since he allowed his son to die for us, he must have very good reasons for his choices. There r answers n even though u may not believe it now, u are loved by him and even useful to him. Please email me. Let’s be friends. U are not alone.

  20. Heart on July 13, 2021 at 6:05 pm

    I’m always the first one to provide an encouraging word, smile, I would take the shirt off my back for anybody. But whenever I try to reach out to someone, they don’t want to hear my “complaining.” I feel like an alien in a world full of narcissist and selfish people who only care about their needs.
    My mom only has three months to live according to the doctors, she’s my best friend, my father is a narcissist.
    This illness is a long drawn out process is taking it’s toll on me mentally. I wasn’t even mentally stable before this happened. I’ve been raped, I’ve been molested, I’ve been beaten, abused, nearly killed in my long 42 years.

    Jesus Christ saved me three months ago when I gave up everything, I gave up my whole life, my small business, pothead lifestyle and friends, everything that didn’t align with God. And now I’m worried where I will live. I’m worried how I will manage as an adult in this 2021 world where everything is collapsing around us. I work hard but for who? I have nothing to show for it anymore. I sold my house to help with my parents while my mom has terminal cancer, I’ll never forget when they said “well we didn’t make you do this” that was the day I just wanted to go to the ocean and never come out.
    Societal pressure to make X amount of money in order to pay rent and pay bills is getting more and more out of reach. And I am not only worried for myself, but for so many other people who are vulnerable, lonely, innocent, this world is truly cruel. I love God with all my heart, I love Jesus with all my heart. I’m just trying to understand why there is so much suffering all around. I cry every day. I just wish it would end. But I can’t die. I just stay in this horrible limbo, every day more and more trials on top of my head, I cry and pray to the Lord and offers only a fleeting relief from how horrible everything is in this world. I hate Satan so much for doing this.

    • Carey Nieuwhof on July 14, 2021 at 11:18 am

      Hi Heart, I am so sorry to hear of all that you’re going through. I wish there was something I could say to help ease the pain and hurt. Please know that you are valuable and valued. If you are in any way being financially, emotionally, or physically abused, please seek out help from an organization in your area that may be able to offer you help or counseling. We are praying for you – Lauren from Carey’s team

  21. Kyle on June 26, 2021 at 5:07 pm

    Hey I am a gay guy from South Africa, I have been rejected by my family and realised that my only source of strength boyfriend of three years has been cheating on me since our second year of dating. I am only doing my final year of law and all this trauma led to me not seeing a way out. I don’t know who to reach out to because I’m not a friends person, in addition I’m dying on my own because all this pain it’s just hard to handle. My options are slim and I need advice

    • Lizzie on July 4, 2021 at 2:41 pm

      Don’t let your family or society define you – you know you are a good person and that’s enough to hag onto as a life raft until you get to a stronger place. Keep the faith, believe in yourself…

    • Lizzie on July 4, 2021 at 2:50 pm

      Don’t let your family or society define you – you know you are a good person and that’s enough to hang onto as a life raft until you get to a stronger place. Keep the faith, believe in yourself…

    • Shawn on July 11, 2021 at 9:19 am

      Hey Kyle,

      I’m Shawn from America and I’m in my 30’s. I’m sorry to hear about your struggle and difficulties that your are going through. I’m just going to share my thoughts below and hope that they will give you some insight and might help you.

      I’m not sure what to call myself nowadays. I don’t call myself a Christian anymore because I don’t think of it as a religion but a way of life. I don’t read the bible or go to church or pray in the way as a chore or ritual I do every week but instead I do all those things as a child of God communicating with my Father in heaven. I am a follower of Christ. I admit that I am human just as everyone else, and sometimes I fall short and fall into sin whether it be lust of the eye to casual encounter. All those who judge me I can say before you do please continue reading because I’m not saying the practice of sinning is okay or me justifying my actions to be excused is okay either. I’m a adult who is accountable for my actions before God and only he will judge me accordingly.

      I’m being honest with myself and with the world that I am on a journey to follow Christ and I am not perfect. This is not an excuse for me to sin but just how any person in the world can fall short so can I. Doesn’t matter who you are because everyone falls short doesn’t matter if you’re a curious 13 year old questioning your sexuality or a priest in his 40’s or a married couple who’s been in their 50th year of marriage, who all can portray their life as being pure and without sin. But honestly no one on earth no matter what century or age can say they were sinless except Jesus. Regardless if you got saved or were baptized or were ordained as a minister, you are still capable of sinning .

      Realizing all of this and studying Gods word and finding the truth was a long many years of hard work and studying. It is the hardest thing I had to do because instead of embracing my homosexuality, I constantly fight it. I’ve been practicing abstinence because I believe that God will use me in ways that I may not understand, and he knows me from the inside and out and all that I do both good and bad. All I can do is try my best to follow Gods will and God will handle the rest.

      The world is a very messy place. The home is a very messy place. The workplace is a very messy place. The church is a very messy place. I am a very messy person. We are all broken because we need Jesus in our lives. We sometimes have him there and sometimes we ignore him. That’s understandable because we always try to control aspects of our lives when we aren’t in control at all. We have decisions but we choose the road and sometimes we don’t choose the right one.

      If you’re a follower of Christ and you choose the wrong road it does not mean God doesn’t love you or understand you and your struggle. I don’t have an answer for everything. However that’s why God gave us tools to help us navigate life. He has given us the bible as a guide to help us, the Holy Spirit to discern, prayer to communicate and church community to love and be a part of his family. It’s our duty to listen to the Holy Spirit to discern all of that for yourself. Allot of times we might not like the answers we find.

      Even if it means that we feel hurt/pain for the rest of our lives to not be loved by anyone or have a significant other like most married straight couples do. The suffering and the pain we feel are the sacrifices we make in order to do Gods will. Its my understanding that Gods intentions for marriage are written as they are in the bible. I don’t question him or the writers or translators of those passages because I know in my heart as much as it pains me to accept that its true.

      Sin is not only an action that people do but its entwined in human’s very being of existence since Adam and Eve ate from the fruit in the Garden of Eden. There are many things in this world that aren’t natural in the way God intended it to be, but they do exist. It is much as real as disease, people being with deformities, people saying they been born in the wrong body, attractions to many other idols (not just sex), hermaphrodites, etc…. but in all is sin. Instead of the way God intended things to be, people have tried to justify all types of sin (murder, adultery, stealing, lying) throughout the years. Science can explain various things and that’s great, and Im not saying Science is wrong. We wouldnt have the many things that help us move forward in today world without the technology to get there. However in the same way no one should try shove any versus in the bible anyone else’s face to correct whether if they are doing something write or wrong. Pastors and Preachers can say whatever message they come up with but it’s your responsibility as a Christian to discern that message and apply it to your life. If that message is in hatred but is lacking the sincerity of a Christian it isn’t a message but an act of trying to force something down someone throat. Or try to force pray it away or try another form of extreme practices in order to fix a person or their problems. That isn’t how it should be.

      We are all working on ourselves at different stages of life. Some people work through their sins quicker than others and some take longer. Doesn’t make anyone more of a saint or better Christian than the other person. You don’t get an additional crown from pushing people away from God. Or only trying to come to God when your only facing adversity and issues. God wants to be a part in your walk with him in every aspect.

      I’m not saying any of this as easy thing to say. It’s hard-living life on Earth as a single person. I am not alone and there are people like me out there trying their best to live life without sex or marriage or having a family. It’s tough but it’s my choice to make decisions for myself and be responsible as an adult for those decisions.

      All in all, your human Kyle and you will take life’s lessons and allot of times the truth hurts and its not easy to admit that we were wrong. My ideals aren’t written in stone but things I learned through this process. I often suffered from immense depression, anxiety, isolation and didn’t have friends to hold my hand through it. I sometimes even lost hope and faith but i made a promise that I wasnt gonna kill myself because I havent lived my life to the end of it. But even though I’m still working on myself to this day. It isn’t something that can be fixed overnight. I take one day at a time and do what I can do as a follower of Christ. Regardless of the opposition, regardless of what the LGBTQ community might say, regardless of cutthroat Christians, regardless if I was “born this way:”, regardless of my sin, regardless of the difficulty. I will try to live my best life as a follower of Christ.

      I’m not trying to confuse you or the decisions that you made in life or correct you. Seek the kingdom of God and everything else will fall into place. If you feel that a monogamous homosexual relationship is something you need to get your through life who am I to tell you that your wrong. All I am saying is that relationship isn’t what God intended and just to be prepared for whatever sin you intend to justify when you talk to God. That’s a discussion I pray many people of all types of sin think about of the day when they have to answer to God. As much as that sentence is scary for even me to say I think my pursuit for Christ will make me turn away from my sexual needs eventually and just do Gods work till the day I die.

      I wish you good luck on your journey and hope this helped you in someway make a better decision on what you want to do about your future.

    • Mark on July 19, 2021 at 5:34 pm

      I know your pain. My life has been visited by betrayal in many forms over the years.
      It sounds like you’re focused so meet your goals and don’t give up – we all love you as does our Father.
      I’m the last three years my partner of twenty years passed away suddenly, then my little dog and recently my last dog. It’s lonely but God remains constant.
      My love and prayers coming your way.

  22. Kiki on June 24, 2021 at 1:00 pm

    I am not even sure where to begin to seek help. I’ve tried counseling and reaching out to my church pastor. I’m a mom and a wife and every day I feel like I have to force myself to feel things because I can’t disappoint my family. What’s worse, my daughter is crying more and I can’t help but feel like it is my fault because she can feel my energy. I want help and I want to stop feeling so drained. I’m trying to read and pray as well. My husband and I also seem like we are at odds with one another and I’m just trying so hard to hold everything together. But I’m so tired.

    • Margo MacDougall on June 26, 2021 at 9:49 pm

      Hi! I’m sorry you are going through this right now. It sounds very difficult. What you are describing sounds like some depression and sometimes our thyroid can add to depression and feelings of exhaustion. Have you talked with your medical doctor? Sometimes our bodies just need to recover from the stress we’ve been carrying…and then our minds and emotions can come back into balance. Please continue to lean on the Lord, and also seek some professional help (medical and/or therapeutic). M <.

    • Anna on July 9, 2021 at 8:21 am

      Hi sorry that i am replying to your comment i just don’t know where to comment so yeah.
      I am 15 years old and when i turned 15 my life just sanked, i feel like i’m drowning like i don’t laugh anymore or do funny things. I even issoliated from my friends and don’t talk to them anymore. Everything started of the start of pandemic, like i tried even kil*ing myself, was in kids and teens mental hospital, two months has passed now and i feel like i’m dying, i am i sport person like i really like to do exercised but now i can’t even get out of bed or make the bed it’s so hard plus it’s very hot in my country so that’s the hardest thing like i don’t wanna go anywhere. Can someone help me like i don’t know what to do, in this page it says that i should seek help but there isn’t any help, like i just can’t do that.
      Sorry for not correct grammarly, english isn’t my first language.

      • Mary on July 11, 2021 at 12:01 am

        Do you have a therapist? I don’t know where you are, but if you have the means you should seek the help of a medical professional. If you don’t have the means (and I mean money, primarily) please speak with your parents about how you are feeling. If you’re worried about how it will hurt or bother then, I promise you, it is better for them to know the situation you’re in than to be caught off guard. Remember – time changes everything. You will not feel like this forever. You can get better.
        If your parents aren’t in the picture, please seek help from another adult you trust! If you don’t have another adult to confide in, check yourself back into a hospital if you can.

    • Mary on July 10, 2021 at 11:54 pm

      How old is your baby? If she’s younger than a year, you should go to your OB and be screened for postpartum depression. Sometimes life is hard, but everything that happens to your body and mind after having a baby can sometimes trip triggers in your system that really need outside intervention to get reset.

      If you’re past the one-year mark (and the way you’re feeling is new) I think you should seek help from a therapist.

  23. Topher on June 17, 2021 at 12:55 am

    Hi…I’m glad I came across your article. I match 10 out of your 11 reasons. I’m only 46 and I’m definitely tired of existing. I’m not where I want to be and seeing the success in my friends and relatives and other people just makes me feel like shit. Tired of the unfairness in the world where the greed and corrupted wins. I’m a good guy and I work hard but it just doesn’t seem good enough to get me a break. So over it.

    • Carey Nieuwhof on June 17, 2021 at 3:41 pm

      Hey, I’m so sorry you’re going through this.

      I’ve been there. Seriously the most helpful thing I went through was having a personal counselor walk me out of the season of burnout. It’s worth the time and financial investment.

      Would you be willing to give that a try?

    • Mariesa on July 2, 2021 at 8:49 am

      I feel your pain as I’m going thru something similar. I’ve ALWAYS helped others but now can’t help myself and I just realized that people don’t really care about me and aren’t thee for me. My mom passed in 2002 and she was an awesome and caring person but she use to tell me to stop helping my siblings so much because they never help me. Now I realize that she meant that I was helping them at the expense of helping myself. I’m an introvert and even though I’ve been the most knowledgeable person at my last two jobs, I don’t get recognized. Two people were hired over me for the top position but they always come to me for the “answers”. I’M TIRED! The last manager lasted 7 months and is now on admin leave because he was so awful. I can’t quit because I’m 56 and can’t retire but I’m SO TIRED. I always thought that if you do your best, people would recognize it and you’d get promoted but that’s so not true. I took the last two days off work because I just couldn’t go in. I’m tired. I can’t even apply for my disability because it would barely even make my mortgage payment. Im just…sooo…..tired!!

  24. Chandan on June 16, 2021 at 3:47 am

    I can see some of these signs in myself. What to do? I’m clueless. I’m not in a position to do anything. I can’t find a way out. I’m simply sinking in. Kindly guide/suggest/advise. I don’t know how this works.
    But, if you can, please help me out.

  25. Lisa N on May 29, 2021 at 6:14 am

    To read a article like this and then pick apart and criticize grammar is absurd….aint nobody got anything better to do,LOL…?? Hows that for proper grammar??

    • Wdym? on October 24, 2021 at 7:32 am


  26. Gursheen kaur on May 19, 2021 at 5:09 pm

    Yes so I am also burning out right now.My family always make fun of me . Few weeks back I thought that they had stopped to make fun of me but it never ends.Last night they again make fun of me and said that I depressed peoples around me and I am so boring and also look at other people constantly and never talk to them always give weared looks. You know what that when your own family says these kind of things without even thinking then it hurts very badly.I feel that I am the person who is not able to talk to anyone and I don’t deserve to live my life.I am not able to concentrate anymore they just don’t stop you know that hahaha hurts.I wish sometimes that I was never born then they can’t make fun of me.Even I also wanted to not live anymore but I can’t do that because as a person I know that it’s a very bad thing to do. At last I have decided to struggle through this and not gave up whether it took me some time also so I suggest you that everything will be ok just don’t feel to be died …..live your life to the fullest.love you❤.

    • Dani Miller on June 26, 2021 at 4:15 am

      Sounds like y’all have intrusive hackers or ex’s that won’t leave y’all one as well.
      Everything, and I do mean EVERYTHING, would be awesome if mine would just go away ! They do that far away ignoring u and then taunt you online by breaking into ur phone.

  27. Ellie on May 16, 2021 at 5:46 am

    I think I finally burnt out last year. For me, it was constant rejection and loneliness. I was raised in a traditional Christian family and wanted to be married by 30 with a home and family. I was happy to work but I wanted to be a wife and mother above all else.

    Yet every man I’ve loved has ended up rejecting me. To make it worse, the women they choose are not at all nice, which has destroyed my self esteem as I can’t help thinking I must be disgusting if a man prefers to be abused rather than be with me. The last one openly admitted she only cared about his money, insulted and humiliated him in public, and asked myself and another woman to help her cheat on him. Yet he still decided that was better than being with me.

    It’s always like that. I know I’m not perfect, but I take care of myself, I’m not stupid, I work very hard, I’m loving, affectionate, don’t nag or fight, I always do my best to treat other people well. I don’t care what a man earns. I love him, not his bank account. Yet I’ve been single for 7 years now and have never found anyone that loved me back. Now I’m scared I’m getting too old and it’s too late for me.

    If that’s the case, then I no longer want to continue. I haven’t had a good life and always kept going in the hope that one day it would improve. Everyone else told me it would. But it never has. Every year it seems less likely that I’ll ever get to be happy. I don’t want to spend another 10, 20, 30+ years like this.

    • Jamy on May 20, 2021 at 11:30 am

      Ellie I feel you. I feel the same. I am the same. I have had the chance to have children which I feel blessed for, but have been a single mom for over 10 years and am sometimes lately just emotionally and physically exhausted from doing it solo my whole life. I work hard, and go above and beyond to be an “asset” in the workplace and in my friends live. I have always taken pride in the fact that I love wholeheartedly and truly and not for money. I try to be kind and helpful to everyone. I take care of myself and am personally accountable and self-reflective. I would just say that it is my belief that we are here both to fulfill karma so-to-speak in our life AS WELL as others’. We have lessons to learn that help shape us into our highest selves- our best version of ourselves -if we let it. We can trust that life is polishing us up… that through the “abrasions” we encounter, we are slowly softening our raw edges and polishing. We are becoming who we were meant to be; to share ourselves with the world- to influence in a positive way. We are learning to be unselfish and nurturing, but must also do so for ourselves. We can step into our divine birthright and trust that there is purpose, and strength in all the we come across. That we have made a choice to be here, and have CHOSEN to have certain lessons come to us to tech us, and allow us to grow and have this amazing (although sometimes sad, hurtful, or lonely) human experience! I trust in divine timing and that which is meant for me, can never be taken from me! We are powerful beings when we recognize that we hold the ability to create, endure, trust, grow and become who we were meant to be. I trust that when we think back to our darkest times, there are gems of lessons there if we but look through a different perspective. I trust that people that “left us”were removed from our lives because they were not meant to be there any longer. I hope you find comfort and hope in this comment. I too feel lonely and tired at times- like today, but I came here and have found that if nothing else, I could empathetically share this journey with you, and encourage you to feel hope and joy and to trust the process! I wish you well!!!

    • Sophia on May 20, 2021 at 6:04 pm

      Hi Ellie, I’m so sorry that you are feeling this way. The pain that you describe is very real and I can only imagine how hard it has been to go through these relationships. Please don’t let this make you give up on your life though. I understand the feeling of wondering “what does my life amount to if I don’t have a partner?” But I just want you to know that your worth or you having a fruitful, joyful life does not depend on whether a man accepts you or not. You are a complete human being in Christ, even without a partner, and if/when you find someone, they will see that you are a complete person who is beautiful, gentle, sincere, and devoted. Your life has meaning and purpose and so much value. It is beautiful and precious to the Lord. I am praying and rooting for you. “The LORD sustains all who fall And raises up all who are bowed down.” Psalm 145:14

    • Paige Rodriguez on May 30, 2021 at 12:16 pm

      God has told me this many times, and while I can’t say I haven’t had my share of men.. I never wanted men. I wanted a husband. I wanted a real picture perfect family. That never happened. And that is ok. Sometimes we have to sacrifice what we wanted and just be happy with what we have. You have your health, you have a job, you need to realize that any man would be blessed to have you as a wife, and any man that does not see this, needs their vision checked. Be careful that while waiting for the man God has chosen for you, that you don’t focus too much on the man and not enough on God. He is #1, and until you are really ready to make a man who comes into your life your #2, God will keep withholding that man from your life. You lie between #1 and #2 always, because you are a child of God, you are important so never think of yourself less than. God made you just the way you are right now. There is a reason for all that He does. Sometimes it seems unfair, but there is always a plan. Keep your eyes on Him and He will always show you through. I guarantee when you stop looking for a man, just give it up already. Say you’re done looking and don’t even want it anymore and guess what happens. Wallah God knows that you are ready for the blessing of a truly good man of God.

    • Ann on June 5, 2021 at 2:56 pm

      A lot of people, including men, have no idea what they want. They don’t always want nice, or a dependant. They often want someone who carries the load, does work or labor for them and bring in income they can use. They don’t think of the partnership or the person. It’s the way it is this modern age. It’s just they way it is. Make yourself balanced, comfortable for you! Then you will attract or allow healthy people around you.

      • Ellie on June 6, 2021 at 10:50 am

        It’s the opposite in my experience. They want a sarcastic, abusive, cheating gold-digger who runs around asking other women (like me) if we know any richer guys they can hook up with. They don’t care if she’s cold and insulting to them, if she humiliates him in public, if she is only there to take his money. Her being 100% financially dependent on him and too lazy to work for herself (not including mothers in this) is absolutely fine. As long as she looks good that’s all that matters. I guess the porn industry plus divorced parents (so many of them) has screwed up their idea of what love and a relationship/marriage is.

        • Margo on June 6, 2021 at 10:54 pm

          This post was about burn out…case in point.

      • christoph on June 22, 2021 at 9:20 am

        In terms of people being ” carried ” in a relationship, people, including women, can use a partner for just that reason. I have read very few stories on the web of mothers, in a relationship, doing all the heavy lifting in a family.
        Excuse me, but the guy would be toast before he knew it…ludicrous to suggest such behaviour would be allowed.
        I was a hands on Dad, full on…my ex-wife decided to have a fling with her wealthy, ” older ” boss. We had three under tens at the time. It has been a goliath effort on my part to keep the status quo, and boy, fifteen odd years down the line I feel weakened emotionally and physically, but I’m still here. Burn out flirted with me, but I refused to give in.
        Find strength, good will conquer all.
        To those out there who think they may be missing a perfect ” partner “, think again. You may well have dodged a bullet. PS, the ” older ” boss binned her off. She remarried ten years ago and is close to breaking that one up.

    • Ana z on June 10, 2021 at 9:39 pm

      Beyond burned out….2 small ones and an unsupportive partner. I have medical issues but yet still give my all to only feel used. All 4 of my tires are flat and now suffering from PTSD. I feel so alone

      • Paula on June 15, 2021 at 1:37 pm

        Sorry to hear how you feel. I know the feeling. With me I am surrounded by people but feel as lonely as ever.
        We live in South Africa gunshuts assaults murders are as common as sending kids off to school. I have turned so numb to the gunshots and violence …. yes it has happened 3 times outside my lawn that I dont even worry to take cover anymore. I was also diagnosed with PTSD. I am past burn out. If I ever get back to where I was I dont know. I lived in Egypt for 3 years had to come back to SA because my son was attacked in school. I cry every night myself to sleep because I miss Cairo my friends my family. Here I just keep my mouth shut I never discuss anything with the family here … what’s the point they will never understand.

    • Mary on June 12, 2021 at 6:20 pm

      Hello Ellie, A month or so ago since you wrote this but hope you might still appreciate a reply from someone who counsels with a lot of those years of experience (you write about not wanting to be in the same position in 10,20,30 years time). I am SO sorry you felt you burnt out last year – that’s a long time to feel without hope – because that is some of what being burnt out is all about – the numbness and the lack of hope – having often seemingly tried everything.
      What you say you want out of life – the so called traditional roles of being a wife and mother are brilliant aims to have. The great news is that it sounds like you are still up for having a family so that is still likely an option. Another piece of good news from reading what you have written is that you sound like you would be an amazing wife to someone who would really appreciate you. And that is the key really… it is finding that person who would actually recognise quality. We just have to work out why you kept falling for the ones who are not worthy of you. Please realise that the nasty women those previous men of yours chose, tell us/explain to us who those men really are… NOT who YOU are ! You are NOT disgusting….it is THEIR stupid choices which have been disgusting. Yes, and those men do prefer to be abused rather than loved …. likelihood being because they have issues probably related to their mothers who treated them badly.. and so they spend a lifetime of chasing around after women who treat them the same way. But enough of them… this is all about you. The question is why have you loved those men who did not return your love ? Is it because you hoped they would magically change one day ? However you say that you have been single for 7 years – well although that might sound a bit grim, in one sense it is not because you seemed to have moved on from hanging around losers who treat you badly.. so that’s a real step forward. Yet 7 years as you are obviously sensing is high time to start dating again and putting yourself out there. Realise that you now recognise what you will not put up with so this time round you will quickly bat away anyone who is not committed to you or appreciates you for who you are. Rather than only having the all important feeling of hope you have to start actively doing some different stuff to what you have been doing for the last 7 years (apart from the not investing time in the uncommitted partners which is a good thing). Change things by changing where you go out socially, finding new friends, new interests, charity work, job change if appropriate to do so. CHANGE is the key to finding new kinds of people and opportunities. Chat, chat, chat to people you meet in these new situations. You’ve probably heard older people saying they always regret what they didn’t do rather than what they did (most of the time) …and that’s so true so the way to make the next 10, 20, 30 years different is to do different and be different – but keep your good qualities, just mix up your life so you meet way more people giving yourself the biggest opportunities. If you end up going out with someone who is starting to treat you truly badly again, you now know to detach yourself quickly (remember you have not got time to hang around now !) – then get out there again, try again and I guarantee that this strategy will lead you to someone who understands and values someone as genuine as yourself.
      So Ellie, get out there (safely) and try new things, whether it is socially, work wise, charity wise, sports wise, travel wise… whatever. There are billions of people in this world and you know in your heart of hearts that means there is a multitude of potentially lovely partners for you.
      Keep going ! You can do this !

      • Ellie on June 13, 2021 at 12:20 pm

        Hello, thank you for the response. And I agree with all of what you advised to do. I think I’ve been doing that part right. I’ve been actively dating and meeting men on and off for most of the last 7 years. My issue is that so many of the guys I meet who would be a good match fall into the categories of a) only pretending to be single, b) single but have kids and can’t make time to date properly, or c) their ex/s hurt them and now they have an issue with women in general so act avoidant and punish me for what other women did. At my age most men I meet in day-to-day life are already taken, so I rarely meet people through groups/events I attend (although I keep going for the socialising anyway). I’ve met a few divorced guys who don’t have young kids and have had time to get over the ex, but they are always a lot older than me, which I have zero attraction to. That just leaves a few that aren’t at all compatible with me or have issues with things like drugs, alcoholics, etc (not husband/father material). It feels like I’ve missed the boat now and I might find someone divorced when I’m in my 50s+ but won’t get to start a family with them and half my life will be over.

        As to why I fall for men who don’t love me back… at first they act as though they do. If they weren’t convincing then I wouldn’t waste my time as I’d know from the start that it was a dead end. But I had no reason to think they were pretending. The last one was very flirty, like a hyper/awkward teenager around me (I still don’t know if he actually liked me or not), very open about his ex wife, the divorce, the child they had together, I even met the kid a couple of times. So he seemed honest and sincere and I had no reason to think otherwise. People that knew the both of us also told me about the ex wife but didn’t mention the new one, even when they saw and joked about us flirting. There were no obvious red flags to begin with, other than me thinking he wasn’t entirely over the divorce so wouldn’t want anything serious straight away (which I was fine with).

        A couple of years before that I’d met someone at the gym who did pretty much the same thing. Was very open about his ex and the drama she had caused, mentioned they had broken up a few months ago, but neglected to tell me he was dating someone new.

        I now feel as though I have to give anyone I meet the equivalent of the spanish inquisition before I can start getting to know them. They can seemingly act very open and sharing, but just leave out key information if they want to pretend to be available. It doesn’t help that I’m on the autistic spectrum and struggle with things like that anyway. I know I’m far too trusting with people and that’s something I need to work on, but I find it depressing having to start every interaction with the assumption that I’m being lied to and manipulated. That makes me stress over talking to anyone at all.

  28. Frances on May 4, 2021 at 11:47 pm

    This has bin helping me so, so, so, so, so, much I can understand my self more than ever ,and I love this piece of your life story it suprized me. Oh and thanks.

    • Carey Nieuwhof on May 5, 2021 at 4:11 pm

      So glad to help!

      • Reverend Dr. Margo L. MacDougall, Counsellor on May 19, 2021 at 5:32 pm

        Does someone follow up with those whose comments are concerning? I have read posts here that appear to be from those who are depressed and/or suicidal. Is there a way to make sure these individuals are being supported? Thank-you. M <.

  29. tvwallman on March 28, 2021 at 8:42 am

    hey, i was looking exactly what you were looking for, and i didn’t find it either

  30. Lisa on March 17, 2021 at 4:46 pm

    Thanks for this helpful tips

    • George on March 20, 2021 at 4:16 pm

      Hey Lisa , did you actually find help in these tips ? I think i did to some degree too , it definitely hit on some good points .
      Now on to what am i gonna do about it .

  31. Cynthee on March 3, 2021 at 6:26 am

    I literally just googled ”I am tired of living” and opened the second search result. I don’t know what exactly is wrong but I do know that I now find life to be devoid of any excitement. All the things that used to make me happy now seem like a burden (including praying and it also feels like God is mad at me). I like to be alone because I don’t want to bother people with my issues. I almost ended my relationship because I just want to push everyone away but like you told yourself not to do anything stupid , I keep telling myself ‘don’t hurt this guy, he did nothing wrong’. Finding this online makes me know for sure that I am not alone. God bless you.

    • Carey Nieuwhof on March 3, 2021 at 5:16 pm

      So glad to hear that this was helpful.

      I hope you are able to reach out to a counselor and get help. You aren’t a burden to anyone!

      • go away on April 19, 2021 at 4:00 pm

        No it did not help, I’m tired of the world and it’s hate a hateful beautiful world

  32. Doug McColl on February 16, 2021 at 9:34 am

    I think maybe you could have given yourself permission to buy a modest sports car, a convertible at least. Driving with the sky overhead and the wind in your face is pretty close to heaven and darn good for the soul.

    • Carey Nieuwhof on February 16, 2021 at 3:16 pm

      Totally agree! Might still happen one day, although I’m not too sure about a convertible in Canada…

    • J Howard on February 27, 2021 at 1:50 am

      8 hoped that I would find something different in your article. I didn’t. Unlike you I have not support. Not my supportive wife, my loving caring children, old friend, nothing. I am not interested in normal. I hate being fake. I once enjoyed that I was different, but having been the mistreated, scapegoat, target for so long I see that this will never change. I’m not smart enough or strong enough (to fake it) because I value authenticity and despise being free and petty. I am intelligent, but not in the way others are. After working very hard I become burnt out. I have not been able to re-energize. There is no break. There is no time where I can put aside responsibility to focus on centering. I have needs that go unmet and maybe they are simply greater needs than others have. I am always beyond tired. I have nothing in the tank and on a good day I run on fumes. So when I can try my energy is used up before I can even achieve my goals.

      So I read your article. I hoped maybe you had something else besides the happy ending nose to he grindstone with a little luck you’ll be okay story. What I found is that you don’t. You wrote some stuff and seem to be selling something even though you are giving it away. I wish you had something, but society has always been cruel to me. The only people I e ever received kindness from are the outcasts and odd balls. Even among them kindness has been rare . So why did you write this as if anyone can be helped. Why didn’t you just specify that there isn’t always hope? Why couldn’t you just tell the truth? There is hope, sometimes, but only if you have the support. Otherwise we are all just statistics and worthless creatures who will never be able to achieve even a hint of the life we were promised as young Americans. Some of us are just weird and losers and society will always reject us. We are screwed.

      The bottom line is that no matter what someone like me who while honest and caring is unacceptable by our social standards and while I’d never hurt anyone or objective them or dehumanizing them, I will always be the garbage of society . For me that is clear. Having read your apparently different perspective I see that there is no alternative. So I’ll just sit here holding on to the smallest thread of hope that someone will justify my ending or offer a new perspective of true hope.

      • Emil on March 28, 2021 at 8:41 am

        Hey, I was looking exactly what you’ve been looking for. I didn’t find it either.

      • Laurie on April 23, 2021 at 10:24 am

        Wow, did I just write that? I agree, he just told us what we already figured out. I’m wary of finding a counselor because the ones I’ve had in the past just wanted my money and never offered any help that would keep me off their billing cycle. Then when I wean myself off to save money I got blackballed. Now if I go to anyone else I’m afraid I’m going to get labeled as a “problem”. It’s one thing if you can still make money and take off, or balance your time, yada yada yada, but when you work for others and your time is not your own, you have responsibilities up the wahzoo, then when it is your time you have the energy of a gnat, yah things just hit the proverbial wall!

      • S Rutland on April 29, 2021 at 1:55 am

        How are you doing now?
        I’m often outcasted to. “Their way or the highway” I’d choose the highway every single time.

        If you’re even the smallest bit different your brushed to the side, but you have to hold you ground for what you believe is right. People can be nasty, but there is also people out there that will be empathetic towards you and genuinely want to be there for you to make your life happier. Having said this, I believe it starts from within. Once you accept yourself and all your flaws, other people will too. Be confident in being different. Just be you.

  33. B on February 16, 2021 at 4:25 am

    I don’t know if anyone will ever read this but I stumbled across this blog post after doing an internet search with the words “do you ever get so tired you just want to give up?” I am. I have been at the same job for 21 years now. It is a stand up job on tile floors and I work 8 to 10 hours a day usually without a break because we seem to always be short staffed. About a month ago I knew I was probably headed down a less than postive path when something very strange happened. I came home after work and sat down in my chair and stared up at the ceiling waiting for my body to stop throbbing so I could change clothes and go to bed. After a while I realized that I had been staring at the ceiling for a long time and I checked my watch to discover that I had been sitting there doing that for nearly three hours. Then there was what is most accurately described as numbness. I have no joys in life at all. Nothing makes me happy. I fake laughter when I think it is the appropriate response for the sake of a coworker. I have no friends for a variety of reasons and the few people that I am acquainted with do not really share my interests and I very often find myself intellectually isolated from the people around me. On the rare occasion that I feel something genuine it is just anger which is so pointless that I have nearly lost the ability to become angry. This blog entry hit home in so many ways but the real question is what do I do now that I find everything to be meangingless?

    • Carey Nieuwhof on February 16, 2021 at 3:19 pm


      I’m so glad I was able to help you put words to what you’re going through. Here’s a good place to start: https://careynieuwhof.com/how-i-recovered-from-burn-out-12-keys-to-getting-back/

      This is how I fought my way back from Burnout. I’ll be releasing a full book on it in September as well. Would love to have you follow along the launch journey. 🙂

    • Amy on February 17, 2021 at 12:10 am

      I’m sorry. Sounds like you are in a hard season. I’d like to reiterate the article, get professional medical help and seek out a qualified Christian counsellor. Please trust that I am going to stop right now and pray for you. God bless you and may he give you wisdom on how to move forward in good physical and mental health.

    • Sarah on April 28, 2021 at 7:54 pm

      I appreciate reading your article on burnout. It’s very normal to experience this, in the world we live in. Some come to burnout through excessive competition and living shallow values or with people who don’t have heartfelt feelings for their wellbeing.

      I appreciate your perspective, in that even those truly engaged with life, spiritual connections with integrity, can still become burned out.

      It seems like anyone who puts a lot into the world around them, will come to that place where they feel discouraged and possibly disconnected from their true joy and inspiration.

      Sending everyone much love.

  34. Matt Waitley on December 23, 2020 at 4:30 am

    Thank you Carey. I needed the recognize some of these indicators. Can’t wait to check out your course on this.

    • Anne cartwright on December 28, 2020 at 1:54 pm

      I feel like that so mutch,sad,things seem meaningless lack of self control over my emotions worthless and just feel stuck here.

      • Marianne Castle on January 27, 2021 at 4:24 am

        Me too , I feel the exact same way lately . Like it’s never going to end . I hope we feel better soon . I’ll pray. I have a few ideas but I have to start eating more and better , that should help at least a little then I was going to join some kind of gym or club .

    • Rev. Don on December 29, 2020 at 5:50 am

      Thank you. But soon as you went into a sales pitch I quit reading. Too bad your help come with aprice tag. Which is revealing and rings hollow.

    • Jim bob on January 3, 2021 at 8:36 pm

      I thought you wanted to help. But you’re just a salesman.

    • Omar on January 12, 2021 at 8:20 pm

      The signs are here with me! I’ve just discovered through this article that I was burned out way long ago. During those years, I knew it’s burned out, but may be I unconsciously or consciously have been kept denying it, I don’t know actually! I am happy for you man. I smiled for those victorious moments you have had, and laughed at others. I guess this doesn’t make me burned out😃! I don’t know if I am off the cliff or not! I feel so desperate, and hopeless. I am a lone. I do nothing. I am waiting for something to happen. I wish it will happen soon. However, I am certain it will happen at the right time, when I jump from where I am right now ….. but don’t know to where! That’s bad. And that’s why I think why I am in this situation, because of this thinking. I see no point! What else to do! Thay bad too! I am very confused. I may confuse my self purposely! But why? Because I just want to sit do nothing and things happenn for me, so being in this situation is a good excuse for me😄! I really don’t know! I don’t like what I am in! I don’t remember what I was!
      Thank you!😃🌱

      • THISISNONSENSELikeWHATURTHINKINGRIGHTNOW on October 24, 2021 at 7:37 am

        Yeah you Dont remember who you are also stop acting like your not burned out cuz your burned out dude stop trying to hide it or it will become worse. True i dont know about you but we all feel the same, dont lie to yourself and breh ;/ learn to lean on something or someone

    • George on March 20, 2021 at 4:22 pm

      Hey all , did you actually find help in these tips ? That’s great , i really hope so. I think i did to some degree too , it definitely hit on some good points .
      Now on to what am i gonna do about it .

  35. Tinn on December 17, 2020 at 12:24 am

    Thank you for giving light to this topic. I don’t know when it started. I am not close to the edge, Im in the edge. I don’t understand what I feel, I feel like I’m a whole new person. Signs above, that’s what I feel. And it saddens me why, how is started. My motivation dropped to zero. I feel like a don’t feel a thing. All I have is my drive, my motivation. It’s like starting all over again. I’m failing. I’m falling hard. And I don’t care.

  36. Mike McDonald on August 28, 2020 at 7:35 pm

    Carey, I have lived reading your stuff and listening to your podcasts since Covid started. I had hoped to attend your conference this past June, but sadly Covid got in the way. I just want to offer one piece of constructive criticism. YOU NEED A PROOFREADER … desperately. My eye goes to every mistake, and while most of them I can figure out and just keep reading, I thought I would bring this one to your attention, because you might want to correct it. Read your own words carefully:
    For me, that meant not doing three things. I told myself, Carey, don’t:

    Quit your job

    Have an affair

    Buy a sports car

    By the grace of God, I did none of the three. The first two are still part of my long term plan, but one day I think it would be fun to have a sports car.

    Carey, is quitting your job and having an affair part of your long term plan? I know you didn’t mean to say this, but I catch little glitches like this in almost everything you write and distribute weekly. You are better than this. Get someone reliable to eyeball it for you before you send this stuff out. I love what you’re doing too much to see you make these tiny little (yet sometimes embarrassing) mistakes. Praying for you and the groundbreaking work that you do.

    • Jewel Rogers on October 10, 2020 at 5:45 pm

      Thank you for mentioning that. Threw me off. I reread it like 5x. I’m guessing it’s a typo. Pretty good one.

    • Lisa Wms on October 22, 2020 at 12:14 pm

      Mike, Mike, Mike. The words are written correct. You need to get a pair of reading glasses.
      “ For me, that meant not doing three things.”
      “ Quit your job

      Have an affair

      Buy a sports car

      By the grace of God, I did none of the three.

      The first two are still part of my long term plan” As in long term plan NOT to do.

      Please read with readers and read multiple times before correcting someone’s grammar. It’s very rude.

      • Jess on December 17, 2020 at 4:43 pm


      • Marcus Smith on December 26, 2020 at 6:23 pm

        Sorry Lisa, you are wrong. There is absolutely no reason inherent to the rules of english to presume “not to do”. And frankly calling out someone for being rude makes me think you are the one who should so some self evaluation. The wording in the OP is ambiguous at best, and should have been edited.

  37. Keith Horsey on July 30, 2020 at 3:50 pm

    This is me right now and has been me since 2018. 2019 was essentially the worst year of my life where enough major life changing stuff went wrong in a row in the first four months to fill 10 years of existence. From layoffs from one of my jobs, to having to move as a result two months later, having my live in relationship break up two weeks after the layoff to literally being 5150 two days after that and again a month later. I managed to reverse course, get a new job that replaced both of my old ones, and get back to some semblance of even keel again but then next thing you know this COVID crap starts up and the rest is history.

    My contract ends on January first 2021 and now I have to start a job hunt. I have exactly zero interest in doing that in my field. In fat I have hated doing what I do since I grew up and had to start doing it to make money instead of doing it for the reasons I started in it, which was the magic and wonder of it. I’d found a new relationship but it was over in four months just like the last one because I have lost my ability to conform to someone else’s idea of what and who I am supposed to be to get along with them. I want to leave the country, drop my IT career, and do something involving the human condition, like study ancient history, excavate ancient civilizations, or something similar, but moving abroad takes money and because of COVID, I can’t leave the country and visit Europe.

    I am tired of living in California with hysterical idiots. Tired of being lied to by politicians, doctors, other people. Tired of everything being so damned “important”. Tired of buzzword solutions to such a conundrum. Tired of being interested in people. Tired of that being “awkward” for them. Tired of knowing what awkward means. I have an interview today, and have absolutely no motivation to go through with it. The idea of interview after interview infuriates me. I’m tired of bills. Tired of phone calls. Tired of notifications constantly begging the question of why there is so much vital that I need to know so badly that I have to be hounded by electronic noise to avoid missing any of it, knowing I could do without all of it.

    Basically, I am tired of being conscious.

  38. Jessica Moore on January 4, 2020 at 3:28 pm

    i Feel like this most days , I’m only 18 just turned 18 . I’ve been fighting this for a while. Started out as depression/anxiety I’ve been in that medication since I was 11. Then it got to where I started feeling all of those signs and I needed something new my doctor said that all those feelings I’m having could be from my overeating and feeling bad about it so she put me on vyvanse for binge eating , then I said It didn’t help so she moved it up more then it worked for a month and stoped so she moved it up to the highest dose and said it was for fatigue (the way I explained how I felt) and it worked for a few weeks then stopped so I quit the meds all together bc how I couldn’t think clearly. I just don’t understand how when I feel like I’m coming out of this it all crashes right back down on me ever single time.. I’m so angry and tired I don’t want to go to work or school . I have a full ride to collage and I know it’s gray but I’m not emotional feeling that joy a lot of my feelings are missing a lot of me is missing I’m not the only me anymore and I miss that I’m so hurt and I’m starting to give up on it. I have a therapist but I’m at the point where will anything help? I want so badly to be better and get out of this mind state and this feeling but it always comes right back and I just feel like a blank page like I don’t have energy for nothing anymore I quit softball I quit hanging with friends I’m just there I’m not involved I’m really lost but this helped me with knowing I’m not alone someone else got thur this it’s just so hard to think I will when I haven’t yet I’m praying daily to God and I know he’s bound to pull me up I just need him now . Thanks for this amazing story I felt all eleven things and it helped me know what is going on with me .

    • Tara on May 25, 2020 at 10:54 pm

      I just saw your post (this is a seriously late response but gonna respond anyway) how are you doing now? Anything change?

  39. Nomorejuice on December 7, 2019 at 11:37 am

    Every one of these fits me to a T, it’s getting worse. My job sucks the life out of me due to the endless hostility between co- workers and the power struggle between management. I cannot get caught up at home , I am CONSTANTLY in a rush. And being pulled in 10 diff directions. Everyone drains me , I’m starting to hate my pets and I’ve become distant from friends and family Bc I just don’t have time to keep in touch.

  40. David on November 14, 2019 at 12:22 am

    Thanks Carey!!

    In my opinion, the biggest sign of burnout is decrease in productivity. If you already have a proper method to measure performance, this should be fairly easy to recognize. Another clear sign is constant fatigue and a decrease in creativity, among others.

    There are various approaches you can take to slow down. Personally, you can take a vacation or sabbatical leave. On the organizational level, you can arrange an employee gathering, group vacation, etc.

  41. Brendan Scale on July 19, 2019 at 4:57 am

    Thanks again Carey. I peaked in 2015 and used your advice as a guide as God recovered me. Really appreciate your honesty and thoughts. I also appreciated Dr Arch Hart’s 12 steps to recovery too.

    I praise God He has made me whole again. I’m still human but so thankful He gave me a new vision and a new reason to live. He is awesome.

  42. Belinda Jamieson on July 6, 2019 at 6:13 am

    I’m glad to know other people go through this. For me, at the moment, it is weariness of life. Especially had a hard year and a half and those things have passed. Then new issues – I will have to find a new job soon and my current one is okay but doesn’t feed me with any passion to do it. I’m wearing down.

    That looking ahead to a job search will take a lot of energy and time. I have a sense of narrow options to find something to give me work-life balance AND enough money to live off. I don’t enjoy 40 hour weeks in the type of work I usually do. I may need to retrain.

    Currently, I want to get away from people. and be left to work alone. As a single parent the stress of always ‘being there’ and also doing what nurtures myself is sometimes hard to cope with. I feel like a child and just wish someone would take care of me!! Very regressive.

    Living in a house with difficult owners, who interfere a lot, is stressful. The negative experience of not being able to find and afford a new place is also tiring. So I guess I let each thing seem hopeless, when it’s not. I have found many jobs before. I have found homes before. I have come through parenting this far, not much further to go. We have phases of being close to people and not, being social and not.

    I see a lot of good is here in my life and where I live, work. I feel bad. I known I’m fortunate in most areas and have to remind myself of that! But I have to admit it’s not satisfying in a spiritual way to be stuck living for money and the daily grind. There must be a little more enthusiasm for what we do, I think it can be found. For now it helps when I just live in the current day and nowhere else or I won’t cope with it.

    So today all I have to do is put away my computer, go to the loo and get into bed and sleep!! 🙂

  43. Christina on June 7, 2019 at 6:26 am

    LOL, I think he meant, as part of his long term plan he does NOT intend to quit his job or have an affair. However, he would at some point like to have a sports car. 😉

    • Nikki on July 4, 2020 at 10:02 am

      I really hope so. I saw that too! Not the part to have a error in word usage. I want to email him so he can fix.

  44. Patrick Dyson on June 1, 2019 at 2:38 pm

    Thank you very much for this post, super helpful and from the comments, helpful to lots of other people! I don’t see how to contact you privately about a typo, so here it is

    Your paragraph below says “The first two are still part of my long term plan” “have an affair” does not seem to be in keeping with your image, I am thinking that you want to change that?

    For me, that meant not doing three things. I told myself, Carey, don’t:

    Quit your job

    Have an affair

    Buy a sports car

    By the grace of God, I did none of the three. The first two are still part of my long term plan, but one day I think it would be fun to have a sports car.

    Some days, simply avoiding stupid is a win.

    • Christina on June 7, 2019 at 6:27 am

      LOL, I think he meant, as part of his long term plan he does NOT intend to quit his job or have an affair. However, he would at some point like to have a sports car. 😉

  45. Derrick Ehorn on March 29, 2019 at 10:50 pm

    Howdy nice post !

  46. Frankie on November 15, 2018 at 3:15 pm


    Thanks so much for this article! It ‘saved my life.’

    Three months ago, I was experiencing a definite case of burnout. Since I had no clue why I was experiencing everything I felt (I’d never been there before), I was left confused and disillusioned. Being on staff at a decent-sized, growing and thriving church had me at the edge of work balance overload.

    After some prayer and coming across this article, I realized (for my situation) the best thing to do was step away from the ministry that meant so much to me, in order to heal.

    Three months later, here I am… doing much better after rest and time off, and part of another amazing church ministry (but on a bit smaller scale which is helping me slowly get acclimated again).

    But just as (I’m sure) you can relate, in those dark moments I never would’ve imagined I’d see the light at the end of tunnel, much less be here at a church on staff again doing what I love.

    Thanks so much! You are a Godsend.

  47. Dudley Anderson on October 3, 2018 at 4:15 am

    Fantastic advice. Thank you. I think I’m going through this right now.
    One of the biggest causes for my dilemma has been criticisms.
    Bless you for your honesty and your advice.

    • sal on January 8, 2019 at 11:13 am

      I have a MEDICAL condition called Chronic Fatigue Syndrome My worst complication is FIBROMYALGIA.

      This reality check is an eye opener…… Anyone feeling “low” for more than a few months – GO TO A MEDICAL DOCTOR!!! Please rule out (underlying issues) such as Diabetes, Thyroid, Auto immune disorders…..

      Life coaching is awesome…. Faith is the best medicine! Be realistic about your ability to give (of yourself)…. You know when to stop pouring your morning coffee before your cup runs over….. Sometimes our cups are too big…… Scale it down….. Take care of you! You are the most important person….. of course, GOD first!!!!

  48. Amy Walter-Peterson on September 2, 2018 at 6:30 am

    I think you might want to reread #7 in your blog. I’m guessing you’re not advocating affairs as part of a long term strategy for wellness.

    • Margo MacDougall on September 6, 2018 at 8:10 am

      Re-read #7…it says “don’t quit your job” and “don’t have an affair.” M <.

  49. J Nelson on April 30, 2018 at 4:08 pm

    Thanks for this, Carey. I find myself in each of the signs except self-medication. Same goes for my wife. We each have a counselor, which helps. If/when we can get out of debt, I would certainly consider taking your course.

  50. Leo Kaytes on April 17, 2018 at 6:05 pm

    I am interested in this information

  51. Ministry Burnout on March 6, 2018 at 1:30 pm

    […] Carey Nieuwhof has been there too. He wrote a post entitled “11 Signs You’re More Than Just Tired… You’re Burning Out” on his blog. I resonated with far too many of those signs a few years ago. Perhaps you can relate […]

  52. Justin Setzer on June 10, 2017 at 3:39 pm


    Love your blog and podcast. You are a blessing to the Body of Christ.

    I am about to go on a four-week sabbatical. I became very worn out after allowing years of opposition to get to my heart and head. I take the blame for allowing that to happen.

    I was curious if you had any recommendations for organizations that come alongside and help pastors recover from burnout.

    • Keith Carson on April 30, 2018 at 9:58 am

      Quiet Waters in Parker, Colorado is a great organization. Here is their website: https://www.qwaters.org

  53. Mike on June 10, 2017 at 7:10 am

    Thanks for the transparency and honesty as well as the helpful tips. I too have been to burnout and back. I did get great help from Care for Pastors in FL, they were awesome. However, I sense myself slipping back and headed to it again. It’s only been a couple of years and I thought I was healed, but now I see from reading your article that it takes longer. I need to give myself permission to continue healing. But here’s a question, how do you heal while in the midst of the pressures?

    • Edward on February 13, 2018 at 1:06 pm

      Precisely my question as well. Even if and as we seek healing, support, balance, and begin to prayerfully discern ways we can more wisely steward our time and energy…the external pressures and locomotive (or bullet train?) of ministry persist. Very hard to heal slowly while the system chugs on. I don’t have a good answer to your question, either.

  54. Jon on June 9, 2017 at 12:01 pm

    Thanks for a great article. I printed it off. I do believe the drain of ministry creeps us very slowly. This article was like my blood test: it revealed what was right and what was not.

    i love being a pastor… which is my greatest strength and also a weakness if I do not pastor “myself”

    I ran my fourth Half Marathon of my life this summer and run about 20 miles a week. It is good for the soul!


  55. Sean Nemecek on June 9, 2017 at 9:18 am

    I would love to take the High Impact Leader course but the times when it’s offered are the worst times in my church’s calendar (busy schedule, tight budget). Right now would be the perfect time for me to take the course (mid to late June). We are in a good place financially, and this month is always a time of rest after our crazy April and May. Early October and Early January are also good times. Is there any way you could make it available for purchase all year round?

    • Amy on April 29, 2018 at 8:50 am

      I purchased the course in January and I’m so glad I did! It has changed how I spend my time by helping me stay focused on my priorities without being sidetracked with things that just keep me busy. I’ve been able to get more done and be more available (physically and emotionally) to the people I love. Purchase it when it available whether you are in a busy season or not and go through it at your own pace. The first three sessions will help you immensely with your time.

  56. Rob Bagwell on June 3, 2017 at 12:00 am

    Oh how this is where I am now! I have spent the last eight years in hospice ministry. The company got bought out and everyone one by one quit or was fired. I was presented with a responsibility that covered a two hour drive by another two hour drive. I was exhausted. I came home every night burned and self medicated. Finally, after a 10 hour day 60 to 70 percent driving in the country, I saw a news story and my anger about all of my colleagues of several years now gone, I blew. I wrote some un Christlike messages to the woman who got Bill O’Reilly fired. Stupid! One of her devotees said she would ruin me. She sent a copy of my posting, hopefully not adding to it, to my local bishop. I was helping in another diocese twice month. A staff member in the bishop’s office saw the post and showed it to the bishop. I was suspended. Did I deserve it. Yes. Now I’m seeing a psychologist to “sign off” that I’m ok. Because of church directives, the bishop had to send this info to a neighboring diocese and I was license was revoked. The final straw was when it was sent to my canonical diocese and I received a stern rebuke fueled by another assisting bishop who had hurt me and my family terribly. Now I’m just edging on despair. Burn out? I’m completely consumed by the fire. My burning love for God is more a numb hoping he will stay with me. The following Wednesday, I the last of the long term staff at the hospice was fired for not fulfilling their expectations. I was getting miserable and a glorious group of Christian staff was no more. That’s where I am. I decided to stop any medicating so I cannot be accused of alcoholism, which the assisting bishop had always accused me of, with no evidence and protestations from the head of my parish board. Jesus help! As I write this my depression makes my stomach feel like a bottomless pit. I long for the energizing that I had in congregational ministry. I fear that will not happen ever again. Pray for me please. Right now, I need the joy of the Lord to restore me and open a door to an income. Thanks for letting me share. I’m really hurting.

  57. S Hicks on May 24, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    Great post! It’s good to know the signs. My now ex-husband was a minister for over 10 years. We spent time overseas in missions. Then he started experiencing burnout. He refused counsel and now we are a broken family. He was just “done” with everything including marriage and the church. He now doesn’t even attend church. It’s very confusing for our 3 kids. All of the signs you posted are very evident and led to his burnout.

  58. Eddie Diaz on May 23, 2017 at 11:51 am

    Carey, thanks for this post. For the past year and half I have struggled off and on with the “funk” that I was/am under. I came across this article as I was signing up for your webinar and sent it to my wife. She read it and responded that she thinks I fit all 11 signs, I agreed. For the past year and a half I have placed my head down and tried to just push through, but it seems after the initial push it just gets deeper. I appreciate you sharing your story and helping me to have some clarity to what is happening. We will be seeking some help… Thanks again.

  59. […] told part of my story in this post along with sharing 11 signs you might be burning […]

  60. Robbie Neiman on May 21, 2017 at 11:13 pm

    Great post, Carey! I feel like you wrote this especially for me as I have been experiencing all eleven to one degree or another over the past 5 months. One thing that I find helpful in all of this is moderate to brisk exercise. I do a fast paced prayer walk almost every day for at least 30 minutes and also do a light weightlifting session a couple times a week. This routine is not a complete cure but it does help me considerably… both physically and mentally. As an athlete understands that muscle needs to be tore down before it can be built up, so perhaps spiritually, God has to tear us down (maybe through burnout) to build us up even stronger.

  61. Lin on May 20, 2017 at 1:31 pm

    In the midst of it. Thank you for your insights that show what I am going through.

    • Valerie J Kerr on June 7, 2017 at 2:18 pm

      Prayers for you. V.x

  62. Will on May 20, 2017 at 8:49 am

    I wonder how you know if burnout means you need to change jobs, especially if you are being treated unfairly at one job and even other individuals think you should move?

  63. My 5 for Friday (May 19, 2017) | Art Rainer on May 19, 2017 at 4:09 am

    […] 11 Signs You’re More Than Just Tired…You’re Burning Out by Carey Nieuwhof. Many leaders will say they are tired or possibly even close to burnout. This can be a dangerous place to be. Carey Nieuwhof says, “Burnout corrodes the soul to the point where it deflates.” Here are eleven signs you’re burning out. […]

  64. Lilly on May 15, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    I’ve never read something that so closely mirrored the thoughts, feelings and slog-through-molasses of the last 3 1/2 years off my life. Thank you. It might not be your pastor/church planter who is slowly slipping away, it may be his wife…

    • Elayne on May 19, 2017 at 7:28 pm

      I see & hear you sister.

      • Laura Lea Blanks on May 26, 2017 at 10:39 am

        It can get better, please believe me. Remember it took years to get to this place, normal will not come back overnight. You might find that you like the new, refreshed you even better. YOu might even love your spouse more. My heart breaks for both of you.

  65. Fanie on May 15, 2017 at 12:01 pm

    Man, I needed to read this today! I am eagerly awaiting your post on recovery Carey.

  66. […] told part of my story in this post along with sharing 11 signs you might be burning […]

  67. 增达网 on May 14, 2017 at 3:52 am


  68. […] Carey Nieuwhof   |   11 Signs You’re More Than Just Tired…You’re Burning Out […]

  69. helen rush on May 13, 2017 at 12:58 am

    agree with this, but I think there is more at issue here. I do not believe it is just about doing too much, or work life balance is wrong and getting very very tired and so inevitably…..burnout. While doing my degree, this featured quite highly in my not-for-profit case study. I looked at the mayo clinic and they suggest that the factors that contribute. include; Lack of control.; Unclear job expectations.; Dysfunctional workplace dynamics; Mismatch in values; Poor job fit; Extremes of activity; Lack of social support; Work-life imbalance. If we could only utilise the advice from these experts and put processes in place – I have too many suggestions to discuss here LOL. Makes my heart sad that some think burnout is inevitable and the only thing that can be done is to rest and not work so hard………………….. (this is not what I think you are saying, just what I have experienced and seen time and time again)

    • Sharie Blanton on May 14, 2017 at 8:05 am

      Would love to hear your further thoughts on this.

    • Elliott on April 29, 2018 at 11:12 am

      I would love to hear your thoughts on this as well Helen.

    • Dan Shilling on August 24, 2020 at 11:25 am

      Yeah well I’m done…I’ve tried for years to get some where anywhere that people say I should be. But I’ve always had been told that I would amount to nothing…so here I am trying to figure out how people do it. How do they manage a house, a car, a family, get that great paying job with benefits? For 20+ years I’ve tried and have watched others make something for themselves but me…I already fell through the cracks years ago. So like I said I’m done

  70. Joanne on May 12, 2017 at 8:39 pm

    I found this article very insightful to understand others who are going through depression and or burnout. This article gave me questions to ask and behaviour to be aware of. I am looking forward to your next article so I can give a little bit of advice to others as I recommend them to seek professional help. Thank you for your candidness. God bless.

  71. […] 11 Signs You’re More Than Just Tired…You’re Burning Out by Carey Nieuwhof […]

    • Jay on May 27, 2021 at 6:42 am

      The last few months have been a blur. Most of the above I can relate to.

      I am tired of people. I am ashamed of being a Vet. The novelty of being a Marine 21 years has wore off. I actually dont even want to associate with Marines anymore.

      Frankly, I’m just tired of everything.

      I’m seeing clearly now that most people are takers and have no problems using me or walking over me. They tell half truths, lies and get off on character assassination.

      Sure, I’ll smile and feign interests when I meet people. But inside, just get the f’ck away from me.

      And, people that call themselves religious are also some of the biggest offenders of causing chaos in other peoples lives.

      I dont have the answers. I didnt really find anything here for me, but i guess if the advice given here helps one person…it’s good.

  72. pastorcarl on May 12, 2017 at 10:09 am

    This has been timely and helpful. I have a great wife who notices things and asks me what’s going on or how I’m feeling when I seem to be “checking out”. I’m aware that things aren’t as they should be, but the nature of our calling does not include structured “time out” like someone who punches the time clock. I need to be reminded to be intentional about self care, which includes those seemingly innocuous things like humor and play. There will always be a mountain of things to do that there is never enough time for, but I need to stay focused on the main things and help others to do the same. Fatigue comes most often from doing the meaningless and unrewarding tasks without recognition. Doing the things that we’re passionate about also fuels our passion. Thanks for bringing this to mind again as we all need to hear it!

    • Carey Nieuwhof on May 12, 2017 at 12:44 pm

      Carl…thanks for this. So helpful. Checking out could actually be sign 12. Great point!

  73. Kristin Caraway on May 12, 2017 at 8:51 am

    I feel like my husband and I are absolutely burnt out. I can identify with every point on this list. The really sad thing is, we have only even been in ministry for a few years and have already been feeling this way for a good portion of that time. We stepped into a really hard situation in our church and it just hasn’t gotten better, if anything it’s worse. Sometimes I feel like going in to full time ministry was the worst decision we’ve ever made. We had a good life before God called us to do this. These last few years have just felt like nothing but defeat.

  74. Mike on May 11, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    Thanks for the transparency, Carey.

    I’ve experienced (and am still experiencing) many of the eleven points you mentioned. For me, the motto I tell myself for getting through point 7 is “three days.” I still continue to battle depression and have periods where I dip into wanting to end it all. I learned from a suicide prevention website that when I get to that point, I can help myself by acknowledging the mental pain and setting a three-day limit to see if the pain subsides. For me it usually takes a day and then I can start thinking and feeling clearly again. I also try to speak with my wife and trusted friends who will listen without judgement.

    I only share this to say an “Amen” to your post and give a strategy to others who may be suffering in darkness. You’re not alone. Find someone you can trust and open up.

    Thanks again for being vulnerable, Carey.

    • Carey Nieuwhof on May 11, 2017 at 3:45 pm

      Mike…wow. Thanks for this. At my lowest, I also struggled with suicidal thoughts. It truly is horrible. That’s good to know about the three day limit…never heard that before and I’m glad you have found it helpful. Thanks for sharing!

  75. Nate Fietzer on May 11, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing your journey. You have no idea what it means to me. The fact that you have been where I am and are now healthy and such an incredible leader gives me hope. Every sign you have shared above is blatant in my life. I have been trying to recover for the last two-three years. I have asked “What’s Wrong?” and “What Happened?” over and over again. I have kept up with (even increased) my Bible reading and prayer time. I went to OC17 questioning if God was done with me when it comes to children’s ministry and in your session you said “God hasn’t exhausted your call to ministry. You’re just exhausted.” and it broke me. With all that said, I am really looking forward to your next blog post!

    • Carey Nieuwhof on May 11, 2017 at 3:43 pm

      Nate…thank you for this note. Man, I’m so humbled and thankful God used this piece and my time at OC17 to encourage you. Hang in there. Help is on the way. Start by telling someone close to you and seeing a doctor and a Christian counsellor. I’ll share more Monday and I’m doing a Facebook Live on it tomorrow, May 12th at 12:30 EDT. Hopefully this helps.

      • Nate Fietzer on May 12, 2017 at 8:39 am

        Thank you sir. I will be watching.

        • Jay on May 27, 2021 at 6:40 am

          The last few months have been a blur. Most of the above I can relate to.

          I am tired of people. I am ashamed of being a Vet. The novelty of being a Marine 21 years has wore off. I actually dont even want to associate with Marines anymore.

          Frankly, I’m just tired of everything.

          I’m seeing clearly now that most people are takers and have no problems using me or walking over me. They tell half truths, lies and get off on character assassination.

          Sure, I’ll smile and feign interests when I meet people. But inside, just get the f’ck away from me.

          And, people that call themselves religious are also some of the biggest offenders of causing chaos in other peoples lives.

          I dont have the answers. I didnt really find anything here for me, but i guess if the advice given here helps one person…it’s good.

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