In the Burnout acronym, the next letter is the letter U. And that is for unhappy.   When you’re burned out, you’re not happy with yourself. You’re not happy with life. You’re not happy about anything. You may be upset. You may be mad. When I had my burnout, I was distant from life. Things that you used to enjoy, things that brought you fulfillment. No longer does.  You’re numb. You don’t sleep well. You’re not eating well. You’re not doing anything well. Life is just overwhelming to you, to the point where even little inconveniences seem like major catastrophes in your life. 

If that’s going on with you, it should be a warning sign that you need to address something about this because it’s not normal. Little things shouldn’t bug you. When I created this post it was summertime in North America, and one of the observations I’ve had is that it seems a lot of people are on edge right now. And it’s alarming to me in many ways because number one, summertime is supposed to be a time of relaxation, sitting outside on patios, enjoying the nice weather. If you’re in a climate that doesn’t have warm weather year round, it’s a good time to reconnect experiencing things, go to a baseball game, go to eat, find food, find restaurants, go to plays, concerts, outdoor venues. All of these things are all over the place. 

If you’re not partaking in those things because you’re too tired or don’t have the energy or you have no time, that’s a warning sign. You need to take a look at that, because if you’re unhappy with your life and you’re not doing the things that bring you joy and happiness, your burnout is going to get worse and your body’s going to be combating this stress and you’ll start experiencing other health and mental issues. 

Eventually the energy that your body needs to take care of other damage than we do to our bodies on a daily basis, won’t be there to repair yourself. That’s why your sleep is garbage. That’s why your energy levels are low. That’s why the high-octane coffee is not doing what it used to do. It’s because you’re burned out and you’re not enjoying life and you’re unhappy. And you can address this, but you have to be willing and able to do it.

My next post on the BURNOUT acronym will be the letter R.


  • Michael Levitt

    Chief Burnout Officer

    Breakfast Leadership, Inc.

    Michael Levitt is the founder & Chief Burnout Officer of Breakfast Leadership, Inc,, a San Diego and Toronto-based burnout prevention firm. He is a Certified NLP and CBT Therapist, and is one of the world's leading authorities in burnout recovery and prevention.  He is also a Fortune 500 consultant, #1 bestselling author, and host of the Breakfast Leadership Show, a top 200 podcast on iTunes. He is a 2x Top 20 Global Thought Leader on Culture with Thinkers360. He is a former Healthcare executive, CIO, and CFO overseeing $ 2 Billion budgets, so he’s seen and done it all.
    His main keynotes are:
    1. Burnout Prevention: How To Avoid Your Own Year of Worst-Case Scenarios 2. Workplace Culture: Create A Workplace That People Will Beg To Work With 3. Working Remotely With Boundaries: How To Accomplish More At Home, Without Burning Out