1.2 Alleen


Recovering from a burnout is a process that you, go through, alone. The struggles you will experience will mainly be with yourself. Prepare yourself that your environment cannot always relate to you. They don’t know how you feel. This can lead to misunderstanding and false expectations, especially in the beginning. Maybe arguing or fights. 


Discuss with those around you that this is how this works and that they should leave you alone (at regular intervals).

You may have (or will receive) help from a counsellor/psychologist. Or you join a Facebook group or follow this site, that’s fine. It can give you the comfort, that more people (thousands!!!) are walking this path. Each in his own way. 


Own experience

I had and have a wife and 3 adolescent children and was surrounded by colleagues, family and friends and all well-meaning.


I regularly got questions like:

1. How are you doing?

-Yeah and what do you say. Not so good yet. It’s not going great yet.

2. But what exactly do you have? You don’t see anything.

– I don’t feel very well inside. A feeling of darkness, fear and fatigue. I couldn’t explain that well because my environment doesn’t know that.

3. How much longer do you think you need?

-I can’t say because I don’t know

4. Do what you like. Have a nice hobby. Or maybe you should find a hobby?

-I have no energy so hobbies? I should not think about it.

5. If we visit more often, or you come to us, that is nice and relaxed.

-No, I prefer to be alone.

6. What do you need to recover. 

I don’t know, but I just want to be left alone.


It was all well-intentioned, but it wasn’t what I needed at the time. In fact, I felt quite alone. Nobody understood.


You will also get these kinds of questions and remember that they don’t know either. These questions are often asked out of involvement.


For your environment, life just goes on. You may be sick, but your environment goes further. Temporarily without you. That realization can give you the feeling of relief and relaxation. The idea that you are going to work on yourself.


What is positive?

You will notice that being alone can be quite nice. Walking alone, being alone at home or watching TV alone. Those are the moments when being alone can be nice. You can also sit in your “burn out bubble” alone and you don’t have to take others into account. You can go outside or stay inside. You get up or not, you can eat whatever you want. You are free!! 


I think that is also the condition for recovery. That you have the feeling that you are free to get your life back in order.



  1. Accept that this is your path and nobody else’s
  2. Accept that your environment may not react the way you would like. People don’t always understand what it’s like to be burned out 
  3. Family, friends and colleagues need to know that you will be taking care of yourself. Discuss that this is necessary. And resist the pressure to not be alone. Being alone is very important
  4. Beware of Facebook groups. Do not also take the misery of other people into your head. There’s no room for that now.
  5. Give yourself the time to experience this. Being alone can be very nice.

Don’t give up!!
Being alone in a burnout is double. You just need time to recover, but because others don’t understand you, it can also feel lonely.


The alone time to recover makes sense. You have to think about what you are going to do to get more energy and for that you sometimes have to be alone.


Feeling alone because of the others can be difficult. But you are not alone. I think 1 in 7 people in the Netherlands have burnout-like complaints. That is (17 million/7) = 2.4 million people. 


All beautiful people struggling with this.