Feeling Burned Out and Not Myself

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  anita 10 months ago.

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    Hi everyone!

    I just wanted to express my gratitude for anyone that took the time to reply or read this thread. TinyBuddha has been a daily inspiration for me along with all the members apart of this amazing community.

    Anyways, I am currently finishing my undergrad and have been working on my thesis for the past year. My thesis is due at the end of this month and never before this have I been so stressed out. I am constantly on the verge of tears when I think about my thesis because I feel like I will not finish it on time. My partner and I have broken up, due to lack of maturity on both of our parts, and as much as I feel like the breakup was needed I still tend to find myself missing him and missing our relationship. Over all, I feel very overwhelmed by school and my breakup and just feel incredibly burned out. I don’t feel like myself, I am usually a very positive and easy going individual but for the past few months I feel like a complete stranger.

    I don’t know who I am anymore. I don’t know if its because of school, or my relationship, or the fact that I am going to graduate and enter a new phase of my life, I just feel so out of touch with myself. Before this year I was very proud of who I was, I had a sense of self and identity and right now I feel like that is lost. I feel so disconnected with myself. I don’t recognize the person I see in the mirror because I feel like I am in a constant state of chaos and that is something I’ve never experience before. I feel like I am losing control of myself and I am just a shell of a being because I do not feel like myself inside.

    I don’t know if this tangent is helpful in describing how I am feeling but long story short I just feel very overwhelmed, burned out and disconnected with myself. I am trying to keep sane through self care like cooking, working out and taking walks but more often than not I feel guilty and annoyed at myself because I could have also used that time to work on my thesis. So here I am asking the TinyBuddha community for some clarity. Have any of you ever felt lost? How did you find yourself? What are some self care activities that work for you?

    I have booked a trip to Greece with my friends in May and as cliche as it is, I hope I can find a sense of clarity and peace abroad. I hope this feeling of being exhausted is only a phase and not a permanent state of being.


    Hana L

    Hello Stephanie,

    I’ve been there, and can relate. I think one of the most important things is keeping yourself healthy at the same time while getting the thesis completed. I remember when I was completing my thesis it was hard to eat and sleep properly (due to stress), so please don’t neglect those two areas. When I was stressed about my project and had to cry, I just let myself cry, and also journal-ed my stress.

    Yes, it’s understandable that when you took a break you’d also mentally berate yourself because you could’ve worked on your thesis, but sometimes the more you force yourself to do something, the more ‘stuck’ you may feel. You’ve done well scheduling some ‘me time’ with your cooking, walks, etc. Do you have other friends also working on a thesis? How have they coped? My experience with my friends was that when we took a coffee break, we vented out everything that went wrong with our projects and it made us feel better afterwards.

    Things to lighten my mood:

    – Collect motivational quotes and songs
    – Breathe deeply and believe it will all be worth it in the end

    All the best for the success of your thesis and do take good care!




    Hey, i feel the same thing. graduate few months ago and I feel the exact same thing. I’m looking a way to escape from it now. Not really sure what to do beside run away from where I’m now. Looking to have new start with my life. Just to know new faces and forget what i leave behind. I don’t have answer for your questions but you just have to remember you’re not alone.



    Dear Stephanie:

    I recommend taking the long-term, big picture, realistic approach: anxiety is not going away anytime soon. It may seem that it is dependent on the situation at hand, the thesis, and that if only there was no thesis to be done, life would be peaceful and calm. But there will be other challenges, as there were before the current one. There will be times of relative calm between the challenges.

    To deal with and manage anxiety, it takes a long term plan, an ongoing execution of a plan. The plan may include competent psychotherapy and the learning of emotional-regulation skills (some of those you are already using).

    A trip to Greece can be a delightful break, one you need very much.


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