Between 2004 and 2010, the number of sick days related to psychological illness increased ninefold in Germany.
"Time pressure and stress are on the increase and the danger is that people will suffer burnout due to their jobs on the one hand and family pressures on the other," says WIdO's deputy chief Helmut Schroeder.
Labour Minister Ursula von der Leyen has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the phenomenon and tackle it, particularly in small and medium-sized companies which form the backbone of the mighty German economy.
While big companies had already largely recognised the need to act, "70 percent of small and medium-sized companies aren't doing anything. They often don't know what to do," von der Leyen told AFP in an interview.
"We're losing a lot of time and money in Germany before businesses recognise that it's not just about migraines or psychosomatic back problems," she said, estimating burnout was costing businesses 8.0-10.0 billion euros ($10.5-13.1 billion) in lost output each year.
The new aim is to make psychological health a top priority from 2013.
Why isn't this happening in the USA? Or are we already stress-free?