The Burnout Generation: A Book Review

I talk a lot about self-care and burnout on this website for obvious reasons. The world we live in is fast-paced and very stressful at times! I was thrilled when I learned that there was an audiobook by Anne Helen Petersen called “The Burnout Generation”. Today, I’ll be sharing insights from her book with you.

For clarity, the burnout generation referenced in the title refers to millennials.

By interviewing several guests, Petersen identifies several variations of burnout.

Burnout can be:

  • Apathy, low enjoyment, not feeling productive, feeling like you’re working all the time, being unhappy, and feeling fatigued.
  • Feeling like you’re not doing enough.
  • Feeling like you’re “always on.”
  • A result from stressful work or from the stress of trying to find work.
  • Related to the systems and bureaucracy surrounding work.
  • The culmination of debt, schedules, and the stressors of juggling work and home life.

Why is this a problem for millennials?

The World Health Organization has declared burnout to be an official medical diagnosis. This impacts millennials because according to research, millennials are the first generation expected to be worse off financially than their parents’ generation. More millennials are getting a college education than previous generations but when you consider the skyrocketing costs of a college education…


Millennials are earning less than previous generations (with regards to inflation) and are leaving school with higher student loan debt than any previous generation. The result: a lot of young people who feel like they will never get out of debt and will be working until they die. That’s scary stuff!

What can we do about burnout?

For starters, we can learn the signs and symptoms of burn out (listed above). Most people don’t realize that they’re burnt out until someone close to them points it out.

Thanks for reading!

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