Overcoming Brain Fatigue

Overcoming Brain Fatigue: Strategies for Managing Mental Exhaustion

Brain fatigue (or often also referred to as decision fatigue) is an event when our brains experience fatigue because there are too many things to think about and decide . The process of thinking and making various decisions in our daily lives turns out to make our brains experience fatigue.

Various problems and burdens that haunt our brains for a long time, if they continue to accumulate, will make our brains experience acute fatigue (brain fatigue). In other words, our mental minds experience deep fatigue (mental exhaustion).

There are a number of problem categories that often block our minds, ranging from trivial aspects to serious ones.

The first category of thought burden is thinking about trivial things. Everything looks trivial, but if the volume is repeated a lot, it will also burden the mind.

Examples of this burden category include: what are you going to wear to work today, what are you going to eat this afternoon (and then you’re even confused because there are too many choices), which way are you going to go home later, or also the decision to buy what brand of product, or When are you going to check email and reply.

The burden of thought above seems trivial. But if you keep doing it repeatedly, it will slowly create a burden on your mind. In other words, there is a portion of our brain that is used to think about these apparently trivial things.

The second category of thought burden is thinking about work. The volume of tasks that are too much, accompanied by lots of distractions and various urgent instructions that are demanded quickly, while time is very limited, often makes the mind become very burdened and then experience stress.

The next category of thought burden is thinking about financial conditions that are still limited. For example, the burden of thinking because you feel that your salary or income is still not satisfactory, while the cost of living is getting more expensive. Or think that you have to pay these installments that haven’t been paid off. Or think about when you can buy your own house while the price is getting exorbitant. Or also think about how to prepare for children’s education costs. Or also think about how to allocate income that is still limited for investment purposes.

The burden of thinking about limited financial conditions turns out to have a dark effect on our brain abilities and cognition (ability to think sharply). A study shows that people whose income is mediocre, their thinking ability and creative power will tend to decrease (Mulainathan & Shafir, 2014). A fact that is quite grim, especially if you are among those whose income is still mediocre.

Another category of thought burden is related to personal relationship problems, for example the mind becomes very disturbed if for example there is a problem in communication with a spouse. Or also if there is a personal conflict with co-workers.

Another category of mental burden that often haunts our daily life is traffic jams. A study found the fact that congestion is one aspect that very quickly makes our brains experience fatigue (Eden, 2002). Stress due to traffic jams is a very destructive willpower destroyer.

These are various examples of thoughts that often haunt our daily life. Starting from the burden of thinking about trivial things but keep repeating, thinking about workload, thinking about financial problems, to thinking about traffic jams on the streets.

The combination of the various thoughts above will cumulatively be able to create a brain fatigue phenomenon in our minds. Our brains are exhausted. Or also mentally our minds experience acute fatigue (mental exhaustion).

And when our brains are exhausted, the willpower (determination and self-discipline) in our bodies will also decrease. When experiencing brain fatigue, our willpower to do something diligently and with full discipline (self-discipline) will slowly decrease as well.

All of the above descriptions show that the heavy and cumulative burden of thoughts will eventually make our willpower experience fatigue.

The cycle scheme is like this: the burden of thinking about various life problems >> will give rise to the phenomenon of brain fatigue or mental fatigue >> and this mental fatigue will eventually erode the willpower energy in our bodies.

This mental fatigue is the reason why many people feel their life is stuck. A tired mental mind makes a person experience a significant decrease in willpower.

And when willpower energy is weak, then this person will find it difficult to formulate solutions to change fate; and also failed to make consistent efforts for a better future life.

Do you also feel this condition?


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Engineering Student of Airlangga University in Indonesia. Love to share knowledge