Kat, a communications consultant and freelance writer based in Chicago, says she’s been struggling with burnout since she began sheltering in place in March. She’s constantly “frazzled and sleep-deprived” and feels worried and exhausted. Her husband works during the day, while she takes care of their five year old and six month old. Then they switch around 5:30 PM, and Kat works until midnight or 1 AM. “Half the nights though I’m too exhausted and my brain just won’t function,” she says. “With COVID, the sense of helplessness and uncertainty adds a layer to it all.”
This burnout also feels particularly hopeless and dreadful, Kat says, because the pandemic won’t be over anytime soon, so it feels like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel. And making matters worse, to try to maintain the quality of her work, she’s been sacrificing her “me” time—watching TV, talking to friends on the phone, reading for pleasure, and pursuing more ambitious work projects—for months.
Jo Yurcaba is a freelance politics and health writer based in North Carolina. They have bylines at Teen Vogue, Marie Claire, ELLE, Well+Good, Bustle, and more.
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