Next time you meet up with the person who answer every “how are you” with 'I'm fine, just tired'? Don’t feel too sorry for them, they have fallen prey to Collective Fatigue Syndrome. But this is no cry for help. Instead, it's about emphasizing how tired they are because they're so in demand from having it all.

According to a report in Grazia magazine, this has come about because of a desire to emulate modern powerful men and women who live immensely successful lives but never seem to pause to draw breath.

But is it really possible to follow in their super-charged footsteps?

According to Professor Jim Horne, author of Sleepfaring: A Journey Through The Science Of Sleep, women especially need to disengage from time to time in order to perform at their best.

'On average women need 20 minutes more sleep than men,' the professor told Grazia. 'Because women tend to multi-task, they use more of their actual brain than men do during the day, so their need to go into recovery mode and disengage from the senses is greater.'

Plus, on top of being an achiever at work according to occupational psychologist Almuth McDowell. They also retain the responsibility of all the little things - remembering birthdays, paying bills, booking holidays.

A recent survey, which found that women did 70 per cent of chores in the home, would appear to back Dr McDowell's claims.

Among female breadwinners, more than half (55 per cent) say they still do the lion's share of the housework - even if their partner has been at home all day.

Amazingly enough, yet no surprise to anyone, 'Women are often their own worst enemies because their expectations of themselves are so high,' adds Dr Mc Dowall.