Could fun and laughter be an antidote to burnout?

When you think of burnout, what is the first thing that comes to mind?  Maybe horror images of someone so burnt out that they become a vegetable with no brain function left. Well, what if you were told that answer isn’t that far fetched?

When someone burns out, the brain’s emotional responses become suppressed, the brain can't cope any longer, and the person may well give the general impression of suddenly having a short fuse.

The simplest way to cure this is usually embarking on a well-earned break from the stresses of everyday life, but sometimes all we need is some fun and laughter to turn the universe back to how it was meant to be.

Here are a few ways that laughter and fun can help you to cure any symptoms of burnout.

Laughter Boosts Energy Levels

If you find yourself frequently feeling tired and without energy for no reason, it could be due to the diminished action of dopamine, epinephrine, and glutamate in the brain, which are classically referred to as stimulatory neurotransmitters.

Laughter has been shown to boost endorphins, that are known to increase motivation and energy levels. Laughter and exercise are two of the best ways to boost your endorphin levels.

Having A Good Time Makes You Sleep Better

The inability to sleep and poor energy levels tend to go hand in hand, and are both classic symptoms of burnout. Simply, having a good time and enjoying yourself can help you to sleep better, which translates to enhanced energy during the day time. It will not happen overnight, but consistently enjoying your days should be able to make a strong dent in correcting these imbalances, translating to better sleep every night.

Tolerance Improves When You Have Fun

Sometimes being snarky is not deliberate, but a response to stressors that push you over the edge. Some people experiencing burnout display reduced tolerance for errors, or conversation as a whole, and find themselves snapping at everyone around them for seemingly tiny things.

Simply, cultivating a home or work environment that is fun will serve to benefit everyone, and tolerance will improve along the way.

The result? Better social interactions with everyone around you.

Increase in Self Awareness

During a period of burnout, you lose all self-regard; health starts to plummet, you are less inclined to work out, and personal hygiene may start being an issue. These symptoms only make things worse, as people may start to withdraw from around you, and health complications may occur. Some good old fashioned fun can help prevent this eventuality:  As your endorphins increase you are more likely to spend time on yourself, valuing your self-worth.

Movement Improves

When suffering from burnout, your body aches, movement is difficult and you just want to sit like a sack all day long. When you have fun, your body anticipates going out and doing things. Psychological pain (or referred pain) fades away, and muscles contract better. Serotonin levels also improve, your mood, boosting positive feelings, and leaving you less likely to withdraw into your shell.

Your Efficiency Explodes

If there is one sign that someone is suffering from burnout, it is the fact that they get very little done over a long time, or that the quality of their output is suddenly much lower than normal.

If a break from work in impractical, then the next best thing is to arrange some good times with friends, doing crazy things that make memories forever. Working harder just for the sake of a little more cash never solved any long-term problems in this world, and overwork just hastens your exit from it.


All work no play makes Jack / Jill a dull boy / girl.

Laughter is not the be all and end all cure for burnout, but it is a remedy to simply being overworked without sufficient recreation. Worklife balance is known to be really important, as burnout damages society as a whole; from workplace efficiency, to social and family relations.

If the saying, "Laughter is the best medicine" proves anything, it is the fact that you should never neglect play in the quest for a sense of achievement.