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3 Symptoms of Mental Fatigue

Mental fatigue can be caused by many things but what it refers to is the stress that you experience over an extended period.  It can be caused by long term trauma, lack of sleep, financial stress, or grief, just to name a few.  Those individuals battling mental fatigue may find that they feel that they are operating in a brain much of the time.  Others may feel that fatigue most intensely after they have had to use a lot of mental energy. This mental fatigue can affect a lot of things including your responses to circumstances.  The following are some ways that you can be affected by mental fatigue.


Being mentally exhausted can leave you with zero energy.  This exhaustion can be so pronounced that you do not have any energy left for the things that you have to, much less the things you like to do.  You may find that you may begin to lose interest in the things that once brought you great joy.  This can lead to you becoming depressed.  Depression and mental fatigue can be so closely aligned that it can sometimes too hard to tell if the depression is causing the mental fatigue or vice versa.  Mental exhaustion can cause you to feel drained to the point that you lose your zest for life. You may find yourself feeling sad, lonely, or hopeless and these feelings can pull you further into a depressed state.


Have you ever noticed that when you are sleepy or tired that you become irritable and have almost no patience?  The same thing applies to mental fatigue.  Mental fatigue can put you in a place where irritability becomes a state of being.  You may find that your level of tolerance is not where it normally is and those around you may start asking you why you are so cranky or in a bad mood.  Being mentally exhausted and not being able to function normally can frustrate you and drain you to the point where you are irritable all the time. 

Feeling Overwhelmed

Mental fatigue can get you to the point where you do not have the physical or mental energy to do anything.  This lack of motivation to get anything done can lead to tasks and responsibilities going undone.  You may soon find that procrastination will begin to take over as you keep pushing back the things that need to be done.  The feeling of being overwhelmed can take over as you look at all the things that you have not done.  This can lead to even more mental exhaustion as you continue to think at the mounting list of things you have not done.   This can be the start of a vicious cycle.

Have you ever experienced any symptoms of mental fatigue? What symptoms did you experience? Comment below with your thoughts.

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11 thoughts on “3 Symptoms of Mental Fatigue

  1. I’ve definitely been there, Gayle! The frustrating thing is that mental fatigue often sneaks up on you. You generally won’t realise that you’re burning out till it’s too late.

    1. You are right. You usually don’t realize that you’re there until you’re in the thick of it. But now I can recognize a few signs before it gets really bad.

  2. I’ve been mentally exhausted before to the point where I was not just irritable but also impatient. The symptom of being overwhelmed was like a sensation of sinking into bottomless waters. I had a feeling of losing control and losing myself also. Hopefully, I never went to deep in the exhaustion because I became aware of the situation early enough to find ways to ease up my mind by being around friends, watching comedies or doing yoga to name a few.


    1. Those are awesome ways to avoid falling too deep into mental fatigue. And you are right that mental fatigue and feeling overwhelmed is almost like falling into a black hole where you can hardly get yourself back together. I am glad you found strategies to help yourself.

  3. Great reminder!

  4. Beautifully written. Ive had a mental fatigue on more than one occasion. Just last week as a matter of fact. I’m happy that I’m able to know the signs and know that I need to slow down and take a break. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. Yes. I used to go through the mental fatigue cycle quite often until I learned the symptoms myself.

  5. I’ve been there before but the good thing, I’m now able to identify the signs and take better care of myself. Thank you so much for caring.

    1. Yes! Knowing the symptoms is key to avoid yourself spiraling too far into the mental fatigue.

  6. I get EXTREMELY irritable when I’m fatigued, this is when I know it’s time to take something off my plate or catch more shut-eye that night. Interesting post!

    1. I am the same way the same way! My irritability and impatience lets me know it’s time to stop.

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