What Is Emigrant Burnout?

What is emigrant burnout?

Migration has accompanied human beings since the beginning of history. However, this has not always meant problems for people’s physical, emotional and mental health. In recent times, research and concern have increased about the growing consequences at different levels that migrants suffer.

There are more and more studies that have been carried out in recent decades in relation to burnout syndrome, also known as burnout. But how is it related to migration?

In this article We will see what migrant burnout is and what are the possible causes and consequences of this complex and painful situation.

What is emigrant burnout?

Burnout syndrome is defined as a prolonged response to work-related stress factors. The main observable symptoms are exhaustion, high discomfort and decreased motivation at work. In some cases, dysfunctional behaviors may also develop in the work environment.

Although the concept of burnout has recently been expanded to different areas of people’s lives (family, parental, couples, etc.), historically it has been related to the world of work. In the case of migrants, it could focus both on the reaction they may experience with the change in their lives and in the workplace.

It is considered that migrant burnout can appear at any time since it is related to the demands to adapt to the new environment. It can lead to serious emotional and physical problems for the person. It would be related to the perception of lack of integration, disappointment with the current lifestyle, lack of recognition…

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This situation can undoubtedly affect the workplace. The impact in this area is high and Lack of motivation to look for alternatives may appear, feeling incompetent with the language or the tasks to be performed, pessimism and hopelessness At the idea of ​​a change for the better, recurring thoughts about throwing in the towel and feeling in no man’s land.

Differences with Ulysses Syndrome

Ulysses syndrome is also known as chronic and multiple stress immigrant syndrome. It is used to conceptualize the symptoms that immigrants suffer as a result of the severe and chronic stress that some people experience due to the complex situations they must face.

It is usually observed in migrants considered to be in highly vulnerable situations, such as refugees. It is considered an extreme adaptive response to family separation, possible legal problems, lack of employment and culture shock, among other adversities.

The main symptoms observed are: constant feeling of being in danger, persistent fear, anxious symptoms, deep sadness, irritability and physical pain. The main differences are the source of origin, the context in which they occur and, finally, the symptomatology (they share exhaustion and anxiety, but differ in many others).

How do you get to that situation?

If we focus on the work aspect, we must take some factors into account when understanding the possible causes that lead a migrant to develop burnout syndrome. The conditions and characteristics of the work performed are key aspects.

On the other hand, It is considered that migrants may be more vulnerable to suffering certain work situations. On many occasions, they are forced to accept jobs with precarious conditions and very low salaries that native people reject.

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Along these lines, they frequently perform tasks that are below their qualifications and this can have great weight on a psychological level. Finally, there may be enormous difficulty in adapting in relation to the new language and culture shock.

What consequences can it have?

With everything seen so far, it is impossible not to think that this reality can lead to the development of serious symptoms. The consequences, as demonstrated by multiple studies, show that they can interfere and worsen all areas of the life of the person who suffers from it. It can even affect the environment.

On a physical level, pathologies such as insomnia develop, eating patterns may be altered, anxiety symptoms, non-specific muscle pain and extreme exhaustion may appear. In addition, it increases the probability of suffering from other types of physical illnesses as a result of prolonged stress.

Definitely, On a psychological and emotional level, the chances of suffering from anxiety disorders, and even depression, increase considerably. All of this affects other individual aspects such as self-concept, self-image and self-esteem.

As we have seen previously, at the work level it can increase demotivation, absenteeism and this increases the risk of losing your job. This may be related to the chain of jobs with precarious conditions and the worsening of symptoms as if it were a vicious circle that feeds on itself.

Finally, it is important that we keep in mind that everything discussed so far can have a great influence on the relational sphere. On the one hand, it can make it difficult for the person to establish new relationships in the new country—which could act as a protective factor—and, on the other hand, it can worsen existing relationships in the country of origin.