11 ways emotional exhaustion can show up in your body

Emotional exhaustion is a state of emotional burnout where a person experiences not just the mental consequences but physical symptoms of emotional exhaustion as well. Read on to know more!
How to stop feeling overwhelmed
Find out what emotional exhaustion looks like. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Purvi Kalra Published: 11 May 2023, 13:30 pm IST
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Our lives are fast and draining, and burnout has become the new buzzword. Stress has become a common factor and feels hard to run away from. Mild stress is still manageable, however chronic stress can put you at a high risk of physical and mental health problems. Worse, accumulated stress can cause emotional exhaustion, which is a feeling emotionally weary and robbed of energy as a consequence of stress from work or personal life or both.

People going through times of emotional exhaustion often feel stuck and feel powerless in the face of events happening in life And, this feeling doesn’t remain restricted to your mind. It starts showing up in your body in various ways.

Psychologist and therapist Dr Lalitaa Suglani, gave an insight into what emotional exhaustion looks like, via an Instagram post.

Signs of emotional exhaustion

According to the expert, while going through stress and anxiety is normal, dealing with chronic stress can take a toll on our physical health as well. Emotional exhaustion is a consequence of persistent life stress caused due to personal stress personal stress at home or stress related to work.

emotional exhaustion
Emotional stress is not easy to deal with and can lead to various issues in the physical body. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

She added, “Emotional exhaustion triggers differ from person to person. What might feel difficult to one person might seem might seem manageable for another person. And how it shows up in the body is different in each individual”.

Burnout is one of the major signs of emotional exhaustion. Making small shifts in your daily habits can help curb your symptoms and keep emotional burnout at bay. Here are some of the signs shared by the expert that tell that your body is emotionally exhausted.

1. Headaches

Tension-type of headache is a major outcome of ongoing stress when stress contracts your muscles in the neck and scalp. This type of muscle contraction can be an outcome of chronic stress, depression, anxiety, or head injury.

2. Brain fog

Confusion, forgetfulness, lack of focus and mental clarity are signs of high emotional distress.

3. Chest pains

When you are in a state of anxiety, your brain starts producing adrenaline and cortisol throughout your body. And that can give you chest pain, sweating or cause breathlessness.

emotional exhaustion
Don’t ignore your emotional health. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

4. Racing mind

Repetitive negative thoughts are most common in people with anxiety disorders or various other mental health illnesses that are an outcome of emotional distress.

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5. Body aches

Pain in different parts of your body like headaches, muscle tension, and body aches are common for people going through emotional pain.

6. Numbness

Feeling numb or not being able to feel emotions is also a sign of chronic emotional distress. A person feels numbness in the mind and is unable to process emotions.

7. Restlessness and inability to settle

An emotionally drained person has an unstable racing mind that finds difficulty in concentrating. The person feels the inability to settle down his thoughts in one place.

Also read: These 14 hacks from a psychologist will help you manage your emotional well-being

8. Breathing difficulties

Shallow breathing or breathlessness are common for people who have gone through severe emotional pain.

emotional exhaustion
Breathlessness is a common symptom of chronic emotional distress. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

9. Problems concentrating

An emotionally exhausted person has a mind that lacks focus and faces trouble concentrating at work or other aspects of life.

10. Changes in appetite and digestion

This includes signs like heartburn, nausea, indigestion, diarrhoea, stomachache, and loss/increase of appetite.

11. Disrupted and unsettled sleep pattern

High stress can lead to impaired sleep, trouble falling asleep or fragmented sleep. Loss of sleep triggers the production of cortisol in the body which further disrupts sleep.

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About the Author

After testing her skill-set in the field of management and marketing, Purvi Kalra is exploring the world of turning thoughts to words. Her penchant for writing stems for being an avid reader all her life. Her work drives her to be better every day. ...Read More

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