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We examined whether interpersonal rejection sensitivity (IRS)—the hallmark of atypical depression – prospectively predicted burnout, controlling for baseline symptoms, history of depressive disorders, antidepressant intake, gender, age, and length of employment (mean between-assessment duration: 21 months; n = 578; 74% female). IRS was related to a 119% increased risk of burnout at follow-up. Three of four burned out participants reported to be affected by IRS, or 2.5 times the rate observed in participants with no (or subthreshold) burnout symptoms. Our study highlights a dispositional factor in burnout’s etiology also known to be a key component of atypical depression’s etiology. The ontogenesis of individual vulnerabilities to burnout should be further examined in future research.


This work was originally published in Personality and Individual Differences, available at doi:10.1016/j.paid.2014.11.043.



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