ways to manage fatigue

Feeling Tired all the Time? Here’s Why:

Fatigue is more than just feeling tired; it’s a pervasive sense of exhaustion that affects every aspect of your life. Common symptoms of fatigue include:

  • Persistent tiredness and lethargy
  • Headaches
  • Aching or weak muscles
  • Slow reflexes
  • Difficulty concentrating and making decisions
  • Moodiness
  • Reduced appetite
  • Mild to moderate memory impairments
  • Anhedonia (loss of pleasure)
  • Reduced immune system function

Common Causes of Fatigue

Fatigue can be caused by a variety of factors, some of which require medical evaluation:

  • Illnesses: Colds, flu, and other infections.
  • Burnout: Chronic stress and overwork.
  • Nutritional Deficiency: Lack of essential nutrients.
  • Non-Active Lifestyle: Lack of regular physical activity.
  • Medical Conditions: Anemia, heart disease, hypothyroidism, sleep disorders, chronic fatigue syndrome, among others.
  • Mental Health: Depression, anxiety, grief, and stress.

A Deeper Look into the Types of Fatigue:

  • Physical Fatigue: General sense of tiredness and weakness that affects the entire body, often resulting from prolonged physical activity. Symptoms include muscle soreness, a heavy feeling in the limbs, and an overall decrease in physical performance.
  • Mental Fatigue: arises when the brain is overworked and under-rested, leading to decreased cognitive function. Individuals experiencing mental fatigue may find it difficult to concentrate, stay focused on tasks, and maintain mental sharpness. This type of fatigue is common after studying, problem-solving, or multitasking.
  • Emotional Fatigue: occurs when an individual feels emotionally drained and depleted. This type of fatigue is often the result of prolonged stress, depression, or anxiety. Symptoms include low motivation, feelings of boredom, irritability, and a sense of being overwhelmed.

different types of fatigue

Top 10 Tips for Managing Fatigue

  • Exercise Regularly: Engaging in physical activity can improve sleep quality, increase energy levels, and boost mood. Even short bursts of exercise can help.
  • Eat for Energy: Opt for foods with a low glycemic index like whole grains, vegetables, nuts, and healthy oils. These help regulate blood sugar and sustain energy levels.
  • Use Caffeine Wisely: Moderate caffeine consumption can enhance alertness, but avoid excessive intake and late-day consumption to prevent sleep disruption.
  • Limit Substance Use: Avoid drugs, alcohol, and other addictive or psychoactive substances.
  • Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water throughout the day to avoid dehydration-related fatigue.
  • Manage Your Sleep: Aim for quality sleep by establishing a regular sleep schedule, avoiding naps, and gradually adjusting your sleep duration.
  • Lighten Your Load: Prioritize essential tasks and delegate when possible to avoid overcommitment and exhaustion.
  • Control Stress: Manage stress through social connections, support groups, or professional therapy. Practices like meditation, yoga, and tai chi can also help.
  • Improve Social Engagement: Spending time with family and friends or participating in community groups can boost energy and overall well-being.
  • Take Breaks Throughout the Day: Incorporate short breaks during work or daily activities to rest and recharge. This can help maintain focus and prevent burnout.

Managing Fatigue for a Better Quality of Life:

Fatigue is a complex condition with various causes and impacts on daily life. By understanding the symptoms, types, and causes of fatigue, and implementing practical management strategies, you can significantly improve your energy levels and overall quality of life. Stay proactive in managing your health, and remember that small lifestyle changes can make a big difference in combating fatigue.

If fatigue persists, seeking medical consultation is essential to identify underlying issues and receive appropriate treatment. Fatigue is a common symptom of depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues. Call or email us today to speak to a care coordinator and determine if treatment at PCI is right for you. Our medical director conducts comprehensive assessments to determine all of the factors that may be contributing to mental distress or fatigue.


1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (n.d.). ME/CFS basics. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. https://www.cdc.gov/me-cfs/about/index.html

2. Marshall, M. (Ed.). (n.d.). Energy & Fatigue. Harvard Medical School. https://www.health.harvard.edu/topics/energy-and-fatigue#boosting-energy-managing-fatigue0

3. National Institutes of Health. (2023, March 27). Fatigue in older adults. National Institute on Aging. https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/fatigue/fatigue-older-adults

4. Victoria State Department of Health & Human Services. (2004, July 14). Fatigue. Better Health Channel. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/fatigue

5. U.S. National Library of Medicine. (n.d.). Fatigue. MedlinePlus. https://medlineplus.gov/fatigue.html