"Burnout is a very selective process and malaise. It mainly strikes the best and the brightest among us. Burnout is a product of unremitting stress and unrelenting demands. Some times high achievers learn to live with dysfunction, but many times they fall prey to burnout. It's a tragedy of our times that people, all too often, become ill with or die from burnout.
Very simply, what happens? The victim's emotional circuits become increasingly overloaded from constant excessive demands on his or her energy, strength and resources. After decades of maximum effort, the individual finds himself screeching to an inexplicable halt."
LECTURE BY HERBERT FREUDENBERGER DELIVERED AT THE HARVARD BUSINESS CLUB - NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 23RD 1981
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