Illustration: Dani Pendergast

The Burnout Effect

ZORA Presents: The Burnout Effect

We created a collection of stories that center on the pressures — and peace — of productivity and performance for our current times

Published in
3 min readMay 5, 2020


This story is a part of The Burnout Effect, ZORA’s look at the pressures to perform and produce in an already chaotic world.

Nearly two years ago, while managing a team at my former job, I was overworked, unsupported, and on the brink of burnout. First came the irritability. New work requests and pivots annoyed me. Then came the absentmindedness. Though I was still proficient in my job, I was inattentive at home (I accidentally threw my wallet away the night before an early morning flight — a true moment of exasperation). Finally, my skin decided to have a word with me when it started showing signs of stress-induced eczema.

With each irritation and mistake, I began to see the path I was headed down. Though championing and creating with my team gave me a sense of fulfillment, my loyalty to the labor —…



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Rule breaker, champion of women and education, and recovering sports journalist.