The Extreme Dangers of Overworking

“Burnout” can be just as physical as it is mental

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A successful hacker worked himself so hard that he burned up all the glucose in his brain.

With debt up to his eyeballs, he eagerly accepted every gig that was tossed his way. He worked every day, night, and weekend.

In February of 2020, he felt a peculiar “pop” in his brain. He described it like a guitar string being snapped. A severe migraine surfaced and his vocabulary disappeared.

Every time he tried to work, it would happen again. The more creative he got with his hacking, the more his brain seemed to “cramp.” His primary doctor was dumbfounded. His psychiatrist figured he was simply stressed and mixed a cocktail of anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medication.

They kept searching high and low for answers. A neurologist found nothing. He kept trying to work. In November of 2020, he sat down to do a pen test. In the middle of the report, his mind went blank. It was if someone unplugged the desktop, ripping the power cord right from the wall. He tried to type but he couldn’t.

He finally came clean to the firm he worked with. Despite helping the company make millions, he was told they couldn’t pay him anymore if he wasn’t bringing any money in. He wouldn’t find an answer to his seizures and weird brain shut downs until January of 2021.

He had accidentally caused a cognitive overload. He drained his brain off all dopamine and glucose. This condition is called Functional Neurological Disorder. He quite literally ran his brain into the ground until it could no longer go on.

He “lost” the words to even simple things like ‘fork’. Even after fixing the problem and taking a long and well-deserved rest, his brain would never be the same. He’d also developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Now his brain treats hacking as a traumatic event and shuts down in order to protect itself.

This is the direct result of the hustle culture countless people have adopted today.

The aftermath is the classic but heartbreaking lesson that companies don’t really care…

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"My pen isn't afraid to speak the truth" - Marsha Ambrosius