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The Bore-Out: Exhaustion Through Boredom

Bore-out, not to be confused with burn-out, is starting to spread. It is a psychosocial risk defined by burnout by boredom (unlike burnout caused by overwork). What are its causes ? And how to get out of it?

According to a 2011 article, published in the International Journal of Psychology and Management of Organizational Behavior, 30% of Western employees are affected. This is a risk that is difficult for others to understand. Boredom is permanent, everyday and doesn’t just happen during periods of slack activity.


  • Uninteresting tasks
  • Quantity of work available too low
  • Lack of interest in the job
  • Overqualification
  • Shelving
  • Activity requiring little action, reflection
  • Professional downgrading


  • Simulate a busy or normal activity in order to hide the problem and not lose your job
  • Appear to be stressed, overwhelmed so as not to get an extra boring task
  • Pretend to be professionally involved by staying at his post, even outside working hours (impression of continuous work by having lunch at their desk for example)


For the employee:

  • Tired
  • Demotivation
  • Feeling of shame
  • Sleeping troubles
  • Anxiety
  • Loss of self-esteem
  • Increased risk of heart attack and cardiovascular disease

For the employer:

  • Financial charge
  • More frequent sick leave
  • Low loyalty to the company

Who is concerned ?

Anyone can be affected. However, it seems that the civil service and the tertiary sector are the most affected.


    • If only one employee is affected: Request an interview with his superior to indicate his desire for investment, show his real motivation. The distribution of tasks and the assigned missions will surely be studied.
  • Consult your personal training account to try to obtain training or professional development, or retraining.