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Forums / Staying well / Anxiety and depression stopping me from working which causes more anxiety

Topic: Anxiety and depression stopping me from working which causes more anxiety

9 posts, 0 answered
  1. RaRa1
    RaRa1 avatar
    4 posts
    4 October 2019
    Hi I’ve been calling in sick heaps the past few months due to not having the energy, and an overall exhaustion from my anxiety and depression. Even though I take these mental health days for myself, most of the time it causes more anxiety about how it will look and what people will think. I couldn’t bear the thought of going in to work today and I told my boss. And now I’m lying in bed my anxiety is heightened cause I just took a day off on Monday due to a severe tension headache. It’s like a vicious cycle and I know I’ll be bad on Monday morning when I have to go back to work. How could I manage taking the days I need without it causing further anxiety? Does anyone have any tips that have worked for them or am I alone in this cycle?
    1 person found this helpful
  2. smallwolf
    Community Champion
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    smallwolf avatar
    5771 posts
    5 October 2019 in reply to RaRa1

    Hi RaRa1,

    welcome to beyond blue.

    My issues with depression and anxiety surface with things going on at my workplace. The first person I spoke to was mum who I said "I can't do this anymore". I am not sure what I was thinking at the but we had a long conversation. From that conversation (and this is the abridged version) was that mum told me to talk to my boss and go ahead with the GP appointment. From then to this day, I see a psychologist and psychiatrist.

    Well, I did speak with my boss about it. Understanding initially. Things were a bit tense when I had a few weeks of stress leave - I was suicidal at the time. But after that he would learn about depression and anxiety and found ways of making work manageable. However, the bosses business partner found out and he was helpful in so far as him having been through a similar situation. In some spaces, the more I spoke about it, I would get others stories and find out that I was not as alone as I thought I was.

    I think that what I did might not be everyones cup of tea. Some might even use it a reason to find a new job. Perhaps self-help and taking ideas from the grounding and mindfulness threads might be helpful.

    On what everyone else might think, I will steal a line from Brene Brown - she say there are only a small number of people who opinion she care about. The rest don't matter at all. Easier said than done. I think the names could be written on a 1" square bit of paper - depends how small you can write.

    Can I ask what it is that worries you about Monday's?

    Peace to you,

    Tim

  3. RaRa1
    RaRa1 avatar
    4 posts
    7 October 2019 in reply to smallwolf

    Hi Tim

    thanks for replying. The counsellor I’ve been seeing has changed fields and kind of gave me the impression she couldn’t help me anymore. When I was seeing her things like taking a day off weren’t a big deal for me and I guess that’s due to me not needing to take as many days. I’ve have my first appointment with a new psychotherapist this Wednesday I hope she can help me deal with this.

    Youre right about only caring what the people you live think but it’s so much easier when my mind is in a good space. As is anything I guess.

    I went back to work today and it’s never as bad as I imagine. What I imagine is that I’m going to get yelled at for taking so many sick days (this has never happened to me before so not sure where this fear comes from). I guess I hate for my boss to think I’m unreliable which I feel like I am at the moment. I’m still highly anxious even as I type this and not sure why. I was thinking about asking for some time off but I don’t think that’s a good idea. I’m just gonna sit at home and do nothing and will probably make me worse. Even the tiniest thing can set my mind off at work and I guess that’s why I don’t want to be there. I hate making mistakes and put all this pressure on myself to be perfect. And then I’ll say the wrong thing or send an email to the wrong person and I feel like an utter failure. I know that doesn’t sound like a lot but at the moment little things like that are setting me off.

    I have been honest with my boss and I guess that also makes me feel vulnerable. I still have this thought that I’m making the whole thing up in my head even though I know that’s not the truth. Do you have any tips on how to manage work stresses? Or does it still stress you out?

    thabks again for the reply

    RaRa1

  4. CalmCat
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    CalmCat avatar
    354 posts
    8 October 2019 in reply to RaRa1

    Hi RaRa1,

    I think you hit the nail on the head with just one word you used in the above post 'vulnerable'. There has been so much written on the key to vulnerability in this day and age.

    Watch this TED Talk... it changed how I think with the exact same issues you've mentioned https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4Qm9cGRub0 

    Let me know what you think.

    Regards

  5. RaRa1
    RaRa1 avatar
    4 posts
    8 October 2019 in reply to CalmCat
    Thanks Doz
  6. Mino34
    Mino34 avatar
    4 posts
    8 October 2019 in reply to RaRa1

    Hi RaRa1,

    You are not alone on this at all. I have been struggling with anxiety and depression for a very long time. Last year I had a lot of time off work as I was very sick and also helping my mum care for my dad as his cancer was in the final stages. I was finally diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. So finally I was able to get back to work 1 month after my dads death. It was only 3 hour shift for the week. I found it really hard to walk into work as everyone was judging me for being off sick for so long then grieving for my dad.

    Then I started working a bit more. Until 5 weeks ago, then I feel really sick. And work made me casual. So I gave them doctor certificates every week and now today after 5 weeks of being on medication to help with the pain, my boss rang and told me today that if I don’t work a 3 hour shift next week I will have to resign. I’ve been so worried about what people think about me being sick. They have been talking about me saying that it’s just depression and it’s not like I was really that sick. So hearing this has my anxiety has been going through the roof. I have a lot melt downs on my husband as I’m not sure I can even walk into the place now. So what if I do go to the shift and I can’t last the 3 hours. What if I do the shift then didn’t work again till the next 6 weeks, are they going to even like me anymore. I just feel like getting in my car and driving as far away as possible. Walk out on my life just run away. But I can’t even drive on the drugs I’m on. My brain is going around and around. I’m so lost right now!!!!!!!

  7. RaRa1
    RaRa1 avatar
    4 posts
    8 October 2019 in reply to Mino34

    Omg Mino34. I’m so sorry to hear that. Why are people so inconsiderate? Why is it so hard to explain depression is an illness? I sometimes struggle with that myself cause I feel I’m not physically sick so I act sick just so no one will question me.and if they know I have depression and I laugh at a joke or something does that not make me depressed anymore? It’s much easier saying you have a migraine rather than I can’t get out of bed today.

    Is there anything you’re boss can do? Have you spoken to him about your concerns? I totally get it if you haven’t because I struggle so much talking with my boss about it actually anyone really. Usually I just avoid it as much as possible sorry I know I’m not much help.

    I dream about running away too! To live off the grid where no one can find me. Omg that would be a dream. Not having to deal with anyone not having to worry about what they think or what they’ll say to me and then running what they said through my head, sometimes years later I still remember what people have said to me.

  8. smallwolf
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    smallwolf avatar
    5771 posts
    8 October 2019 in reply to RaRa1
    Hi again,

    You asked if I had tips or tricks....

    My main tool is an app called virtual hope box. It has short meditations, distraction tools and other coping tools.

    There's is also an app that I think is called the Act companion. The pop-up notifications were helpful.

    I am also on ADs which helped with the physical symptoms as well.

    Changing language is helpful. Rather than saying"I should have" change to "I wish..."

    What would you say to a friend who told you your story?

    Write down things that you do well. That way the negative thoughts won't crush the good you have done.

    Set aside a time for worrying.

    Use any or all or none. Hopefully some of these will be useful for you.

    Tim
    2 people found this helpful
  9. Mino34
    Mino34 avatar
    4 posts
    9 October 2019 in reply to RaRa1

    Thanks for reply RaRa1.

    In the defence of my boss she has gone out of her way to help me when my dad was dying. But she’s doesn’t understand the invisible illness. I know what u mean if ur having a good day and ur laughing at work, when I get in my car to drive home I’m worried everyone is talking about how I’m fine and there’s nothing wrong with me. They don’t understand. People don’t understand until it happens to them. My boss told me after I had returned to work after my dad died that instead of feeling sorry for myself I just need to put my head up high and get on with life. Get a good night sleep and tomorrow’s a new day. I was gobsmacked. I thought she had my back but I knew from then on I just keep everything to myself at work. So I told no one anything anymore.

    i have spoken to my husband and my mum and I am going to resign from work so I don’t have that *god I have to ring work again and tell them I sick* feeling. I can just concentrate on getting better. It’s going to take me time to get all my meds right and manage my illnesses.

    With ur anxiety does your boss know all about? I did find that being transparent with my illnesses it did help when I had to take days off. That was well before things started deteriorating with my work and myself.

    xx

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