burn·​out | \ ˈbərn-ˌau̇t How to pronounce burnout (audio) \

Definition of burnout

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the cessation of operation usually of a jet or rocket engine also : the point at which burnout occurs
2a : exhaustion of physical or emotional strength or motivation usually as a result of prolonged stress or frustration
b : a person suffering from burnout
3 : a person showing the effects of drug abuse

burn out

burned out or burnt out; burning out; burns out

Definition of burn out (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to drive out or destroy the property of by fire
2 : to cause to fail, wear out, or become exhausted especially from overwork or overuse

intransitive verb

: to suffer burnout

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Examples of burnout in a Sentence

Noun Teaching can be very stressful, and many teachers eventually suffer burnout. the burnout rate among teachers a novel about academic burnouts Verb working 12-hour days at that job just burned me out
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In the end, the company’s branding of itself as a fun-loving, ski-bum-in-a-ball-pit workplace is a fitting image: Google is a burnout, a flake. Joanne Mcneil, Harper's magazine, "Search and Destroy," 20 Jan. 2020 The new benefit was added specifically to address physician burnout, said Sullivan. Susan Glaser, cleveland.com, "Mental health day off? Company culture is changing: Top Workplaces 2019," 16 June 2019 But some YouTubers appear to believe part of the solution to dealing with burnout on the platform is more YouTube. Kaya Yurieff, CNN, "YouTube burnout is real. Creators are struggling to cope," 18 Dec. 2019 In the struggle to abolish gender disparities, health care professionals’ lack of knowledge about the science creates a vicious cycle of extra work and potential harm in psychological well-being and burnout for women. Julie K. Silver, STAT, "Abundant research shows gender disparities in medicine, but too few know about it. #NeedHerScience," 13 Nov. 2019 Meanwhile Mitski performed what’s allegedly one of her final shows ahead of an indefinite hiatus, but there was no sign of burnout Sunday. Piet Levy, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Lollapalooza 2019: Ariana Grande premieres 'Boyfriend' live, recovers from close wipeout, on final night," 5 Aug. 2019 Since first entering the cultural lexicon in the mid-1970s, burnout has rapidly become an everyday reality for many—if not the majority—of those working a 9-to-5 job. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Workplace Burnout Is Officially an “Occupational Phenomenon”—Here’s What You Can Do About It," 29 May 2019 The buzzy film — starring and co-written by Davidson and directed by Judd Apatow — centers on a burnout living with his mom (Marisa Tomei) on Staten Island. Joey Nolfi, EW.com, "King of Staten Island," 15 Jan. 2020 Lack of control, in any form, can set you up for burnout. Ginny Graves, Health.com, "What Is Burnout? How to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed at Work," 10 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Chess players, particularly young ones who play the game at a high level, can end up burned out. NBC News, "Fast-and-loose culture of esports is upending once staid world of chess," 17 Feb. 2020 Many public health specialists are optimistic that the outbreak will burn out as a consequence of stringent infection control and quarantine practices. John A. Lednicky, The Conversation, "As China suffers from coronavirus, some wonder: Is it really that serious? 3 questions answered," 7 Feb. 2020 In the meantime, the Greek islands are ramping up for the coming tourist season, more confident than ever that the power won't burn out. Stelios Bouras, Fortune, "Greece turns to China to connect its far-flung islands to the electric grid, leaving Brussels in the dark," 25 Jan. 2020 Western fire practices also involve hazard reduction burns, which are similarly aimed at burning out this litter. Aarti Betigeri, Time, "How Australia's Indigenous Experts Could Help Deal With Devastating Wildfires," 14 Jan. 2020 The same works with a laser but, because its light is so intense—1,000 times brighter than an LED—the phosphor filter burns out immediately. The Economist, "Chinese inventiveness shows the weakness of the law," 4 Jan. 2020 Across her district, people who weren’t burned out on Washington controversy had polarized views on Trump’s impeachment. BostonGlobe.com, "And in her first large-scale encounter with constituents since joining them, Luria was greeted with more support than opposition in a district that Republicans are expected to target next year — particularly after her decision.," 5 Oct. 2019 When the Trump era finally burns out, one way or another, these two should hit the road together. Ian Crouch, The New Yorker, "The Best Jokes of 2019," 4 Dec. 2019 Start by understanding the danger of acting hastily while seeking new employment, particularly when you are burned out. Alice Gomstyn, chicagotribune.com, "How to tell whether a prospective employer is actually ‘family-friendly’," 4 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'burnout.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of burnout


1940, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1710, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for burnout

Time Traveler

The first known use of burnout was in 1710

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Statistics for burnout

Last Updated

17 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Burnout.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/burnout?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=b&file=burnou01. Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for burnout


How to pronounce burn out (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of burnout

: the condition of someone who has become very physically and emotionally tired after doing a difficult job for a long time
: a person who suffers burnout
: the time when a jet or rocket engine stops working because there is no more fuel available


burn·​out | \ ˈbərn-ˌau̇t How to pronounce burnout (audio) \

Medical Definition of burnout

1a : exhaustion of physical or emotional strength usually as a result of prolonged stress or frustration
b : a person affected with burnout
2 : a person showing the effects of drug abuse

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with burnout

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