10 things you don’t realize you’re doing because you’re emotionally exhausted

It’s one thing to be physically tired and another to be emotionally exhausted. In the former, at least we’re still able to think.

But when we’re emotionally tired, even deciding what to eat is challenging.

Everything drains us and we just want to crawl back to bed and lay there.

We may even do things that we’re unaware of, because we’re simply too tired.

If you’ve experienced a rough patch recently, you may be emotionally exhausted.

Read on to find out if you’ve been exhibiting these 10 behaviors.

1) Getting irritated easily

Everything, and I mean everything, gets on your nerves.

Things that never affected you previously now irritates the life out of you.

Even the smallest of things can trigger you – from the sound of footsteps down the corridor, to the daily morning chatter between colleagues.

When people try to talk to you, you find yourself either brushing them off or giving a curt reply.

At work, you may find yourself getting more annoyed than usual when you have more tasks assigned to you, or if your colleagues ask for help.

You start taking out your frustrations on everyone, even the people closest to you.

Have you noticed some of your family members or friends keeping a distance, or asking if you’re okay?

If so, you may be emotionally exhausted.

2) Withdrawing from friends or social events

Socializing takes up a lot of energy. Which is something you don’t have.

Regardless if you’re an introvert or extrovert, being emotionally exhausted puts you off all social interaction.

Even with the people you used to enjoy hanging out with.

Finding a topic to talk about is just too challenging and the bustle of social events is just too much for you to handle mentally.

It’s a lot easier to withdraw.

You may not notice yourself doing this, but the people you care about will. You may find them texting or calling you just to see if you’re doing alright.

Unfortunately, your actions may also drive some people away.

3) Detaching from life

Overall, life just doesn’t seem very interesting.

You don’t care what happens tomorrow, the next month or the future.

You go along with your day and whatever happens barely elicits any emotion from you. You’re just numb.

Whatever struggles that you are facing have inhibited your ability to feel. The things that once brought you joy have just become things to do.

Even the people that you’re with, the activities and conversations you once enjoyed, no longer interest you.

While you’d rather be left alone, you find it easier to cruise through life, detached from everything, because it takes up less effort from you mentally and emotionally.

4) Neglecting self-care

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Here, I’m not even talking about getting a massage or taking yourself out for a day of fun.

The self-care I’m referring to are basic things, like getting up to shower. Packing your room. Putting clothes in the laundry, or fixing a meal for yourself.

When you’re emotionally exhausted, you’re running on empty. The idea of caring for yourself is simply too tiring. All you want to do is sleep.

If you find yourself in this situation, you may be experiencing signs of depression as well.

You may also find yourself…

5) Neglecting responsibilities

Because you’re exhausted, stressed and simply unable to muster the energy to care, you may be neglecting responsibilities as well.

This can be at work, school or even within your family.

When you get assigned extra tasks at work or school, do you find that you’re taking a lot longer to complete them? Maybe your boss had given you some feedback on this, after several missed deadlines.

At home, are your chores left undone? If you’re the one tasked to cook for the family, do you just decide not to? If your spouse wants to spend time with you over a nice dinner, do you find yourself wanting to be left alone instead?

The things that you once considered important have become inconveniences in your life.

And while the consequences of neglecting responsibilities at work and school can be serious, this can also cause breakdowns in your relationships with the people closest to you.

The people around you may not understand what you’re going through, but your actions will be keenly felt by all of them.

6) Having reduced empathy

But even though you may recognize that your actions have impacted others, you find yourself unable to care or empathize.

Your increased irritability doesn’t help either. You may find yourself getting more impatient as you lash out at others a lot more.

People may start avoiding you because of your temper.

You may not even recognize yourself because whatever you’re struggling with has started to consume you.

When your colleague accidentally makes a mistake in a project or your spouse forgets to do something they were supposed to, you immediately lash out instead of trying to understand.

7) Increased use of social media

Since interacting with people not only tires you out but has also caused much friction, you start to withdraw to things that require less thinking.

And the easiest thing to find refuge in is social media. You end up mindlessly scrolling for hours on end, getting entertained while escaping reality.

At least, in those few hours, you’re far away from your problems. And laughing at a video of a cat doing tricks.

You may have even replaced time that you previously spent with friends, on social media instead.

Perhaps you’re also on social media at work as well, and people have started noticing.

8) Being constantly tired

pic1268 10 things you don’t realize you’re doing because you're emotionally exhausted

No matter how long you sleep for, you can’t remove the fatigue that has sunken deep into your bones.

You’re not only emotionally tired, you’re physically exhausted too. Even after spending an entire day doing nothing.

Just getting out of bed has become incredibly challenging.

And you realize this has become your default mode, which is also affecting your productivity and ability to complete the simplest of tasks – such as dressing for work, or taking out the trash.

But you’re too tired to care.

9) Being unable to sleep well

You may also find it difficult to sleep because of the thoughts that run havoc in your head.

Stress and anxiety keeps you awake and you’re unable to get a good night’s rest. You may have resorted to sleeping pills to help, rather than spending hours tossing and turning.

You don’t remember the last time you slept well.

This has impacted your ability to function throughout the day. You’re weak, fatigued and everything is just too loud and too fast.

You find yourself overly dependent on caffeine to get through the day, but even that may have lost its effectiveness.

10) Having no motivation

With everything that’s going on in your life, you lack the drive to complete anything. You constantly feel that something bad is about to happen, and wonder what’s the point of it all.

You’re no longer motivated to achieve the goals you’d set out for yourself at work and school. And this shows in the declining quality of work that you’ve submitted – which may have caught the attention of those around you.

As you watch deadlines come and go, the pile of work climbs higher and your drive to complete these tasks continues to drop.

Despite receiving warnings from management, teachers and even concern from your colleagues and classmates, you’re too exhausted or numb to react.

What next?

If you recognize that you’re exhibiting these signs, it’s important to seek help.

Try identifying what’s the stressor in your life. It could be a culmination of many things or a core issue that has affected everything else.

Ultimately, you’ve come to realize that you’re unable to handle this alone. After witnessing the impact this has caused the people around you and life in general, you may start to acknowledge that you need help.

So, talk to someone.

It can be a trusted family member, friend, or a professional. You’ll realize that after letting your frustrations out, the burden on your shoulders will start to lighten.

Slowly, you’ll be on the path to healing yourself and repairing the relationships that may have broken down.

It will take some time, but trust the process and the people who are willing to walk this path with you.

It’s very important to have a strong support network that you can lean on, especially when you face not so good days.


Life is not a bed of roses and we’ll inevitably face struggles in different seasons of our lives that may render us completely helpless.

These periods of our lives may also take time for us to recover from. It could last for months or even years.

Always remember that you’re not alone in this. When you finally heal from your trauma, sure there’ll be scars.

But you’ll become a much stronger, better version of yourself as compared to when you first started.

So, keep pressing on.

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Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

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