The Mighty Logo

9 Types of 'Tired' You Might Be Feeling Right Now

The most helpful emails in health
Browse our free newsletters

The world feels topsy-turvy right now, doesn’t it? Between health concerns, protests, employment changes and the loss of routines, vacations and socialization, I think many of us are feeling deeply tired. 

When I recently mentioned to a family member that I felt tired, they suggested I take a nap. But… I wasn’t that kind of tired. The weariness I felt went far beyond what sleep could cure. It made me reflect on how many types of “tired” there truly are. I could only fit a few on this doodle, but I’m sure there are more. What other types would you add to this list? 

1. Dazed

This type of tired makes your brain feel foggy and slow. You’re confused about how you ended up here, and you’re not sure where you’re supposed to be going. Also, you probably lost your car keys.

2. Exhausted

A more physical type of tired, exhaustion occurs when your body and brain are feeling equally run-down. Those who live with chronic or mental illness are very familiar with this kind of tired! (Take it from me, a bipolar girl.) 

3. Overworked

Quarantine has put new levels of stress on many employees and parents. There’s a big learning curve when it comes to telecommuting or homeschooling! If you’re being overworked, of course you feel tired.

4. Fed Up

If you’ve been feeling frustrated by what’s been happening in the news, you understand this sort of tired. It feels like nobody is listening and nothing is getting better. Maybe a Facebook rant would help? (Yeah, that’s what I thought too. I was wrong.) 

5. Burned Out

Burnout happens when daily stressors accumulate without adequate relief.  You’re grinding away, day after day, with no end in sight. You suspect that a sneeze could blow you away, like ashes on the breeze. Poof!

6. Apathetic.

Ironically, apathy is often the result of caring too much, for too long. You’ve invested so much energy in a project/person/job without seeing encouraging results. You eventually become indifferent because you’re simply too tired to keep caring. *shrugs* 

A banner promoting The Mighty's new Up All Night group on The Mighty mobile app. The banner reads, Do you have trouble sleeping because of insomnia, painsomnia, anxiety or any other reason? Chat with other night owls when you can't sleep in the Up All Night group. Click to join.

7. Broken.

Perhaps you feel like you’ve made too many mistakes. Or maybe it seems like you’ve been hurt too badly to ever heal. While I don’t believe that anyone can actually be “broken,” I do understand what it’s like to feel that way. And it makes a person feel very, very tired. (PS: You aren’t really broken. I promise.) 

8. Drained

I consider this an “emotional” sort of tired.  You feel as though a vampire has sucked away your life force. It could possibly be the result of over-stimulation, tense interpersonal encounters or endless problem-solving. Whew. I’m tired just from listing those. 

9. Defeated

This is perhaps the most difficult type of tired to navigate. When you experience this degree of tired, it feels like the end of the road, like all hope is lost, and there’s no point in trying to move forward. If you feel defeated, you are deeply, deeply tired… and no, a nap won’t cure it.  (It’s probably a good idea to call your therapist or a crisis hotline: You need and deserve validation, support and compassion.)

It’s normal to feel tired, especially when so many things are different and uncertain. While I haven’t found a magic cure to make me feel rested and rejuvenated, I am trying very hard to focus on healthy habits and coping skills to keep me going. Roller skating, reading, caring for my houseplants and playing with my pups are all things that help me re-center myself. What keeps you moving forward when you feel tired?

To see more from Marzi, visit her site.

Image provided by Marzi

Originally published: July 28, 2020
Want more of The Mighty?
You can find even more stories on our Home page. There, you’ll also find thoughts and questions by our community.
Take Me Home