The Happiness of Burnout

Journal of Philosophy of Life 4 (1):48-67 (2014)
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Abstract

In the novel A Burnout-Out Case, Graham Greene argues for an intimate relationship between burnout and happiness. The novel claims that a life worth living is a continuous balancing between something painful, e.g. burnout and something desirable, e.g. happiness. In this essay, I try to make a case for the happiness of burnout. By examining the case story of a young artist, who suffered from burnout, I describe how such suffering might open up for a necessary reevaluation of the values that actually make sense. Such creation of new values is what eventually leads to more happy moments, not happiness per se. This essay provides a philosophical reflection regarding the relationship between happiness and burnout in order to say something regarding which life is worth living.

Author's Profile

Finn Janning
Copenhagen Business School (PhD)

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