Remember: It Gets Better
If youre struggling with anxiety or another mental illness, its easy to feel like its never going to end. You think youre always going to feel this overwhelming sense of panic or anxiousness, and its easy to want to give up.
But heres what you need to remember: it will get better, and you arent going to feel like this forever.
Its important to keep fighting even when you dont feel like you have much more to give. Because your best days are ahead of you. Just take it day by day. Hour by hour. Step by step. You can do this. I know you can.
Feelings of depression or anxiety can lead to suicidal thinking. If you or a loved one is experiencing suicidal thoughts or tendencies, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at .
Find What Relaxes You
There are already things in your life that relax you. You may find it beneficial to make a list of things you enjoy and that help you to relax so you can reference it when symptoms of anxiety arise. When you notice your anxiety rising turn to those activities to help stop symptoms before they escalate.
For example, if you find that a warm bath is relaxing, don’t wait, draw a bath, maybe light some candles or add a few nice scents and get in. Whether it’s a bath, a shower, skipping stones at a park, getting a massage – if it works, do it right away, rather than allowing yourself to become overwhelmed by your anxiety.
Causes Of Anxiety Fear And Panic
There are many different causes of anxiety, fear or panic and it’s different for everyone.
When you’re feeling anxious or scared, your body releases stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol.
This can be helpful in some situations, but it might also cause physical symptoms such as an increased heart rate and increased sweating. In some people, it might cause a panic attack.
Regular anxiety, fear or panic can also be the main symptom of several health conditions. Do not self-diagnose speak to a GP if you’re worried about how you’re feeling.
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Tackle That Interview Anxiety Head
Its impossible not to feel a level of anxiety and nervousness before a job interview, and even though anxiety can sometimes be motivational and give you a boost of energy, it can also cause your interview to go bad.
So use these helpful tips to stay calm and collected, and if that overwhelming feeling comes over you, stop, breathe, and center yourself. You can do it!
What Is New Job Anxiety
People sometimes call job anxiety the jitters, and it happens to anybody and everybody. Anxiety itself occurs when we experience change or new situations, so adjusting to a new job is a prime time for it to strike.
Many things about your new job can induce anxiety. You have a new workplace to get used to commuting to, a new office, new managers. Everything is new, and you aren’t comfortable yet. Perhaps this is a significant career change for you, and you’re anxious about avoiding failure.
Pointing it out and acknowledging your anxieties is a good start to overcoming them.
If you already struggle with your mental health, starting a new job with anxiety or depression feels impossible but trust us, its not.
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Accept Feedback & Be Patient
It is okay to not know everything right away. Your work tasks will take more time right now as you are learning the systems, processes, and culture of your workplace. Be patient with yourself during the transition, own up to what you dont know with your colleagues and supervisors, and seek out help from others as you acclimate to your new position. Amber Pope, Ph.D., LPC, LMHC, CCTP
How To Overcome Job Anxiety
You want to get over your new job anxiety to enjoy your new role and get into your new work. Remember how much effort you put into landing this new position? Dont let that go to waste by sinking into self-criticism or negative self-talk. Unchecked anxiety can lead to burnout or self-sabotage.
Check out these 10 coping strategies to help you deal with new job anxiety:
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Another Day Another Dollar
Are you feeling sick as soon as you get to work? Are you locking yourself in the bathroom just to catch your breath?
Been there so hard.
Before I was able to launch myself as a writer, I spent almost a decade working for the same company , and while I’ve always dealt with anxiety, it was greatly exacerbated during my last year of working there. Here’s how I dealt with the day-to-day anxiety until I was able to jump ship.
First Steps To Facing Your Return To Work Anxiety
With the phased return to work right around the corner, you are not alone if youre feeling anxious and stressed. The change in routine and social interactions, as well as the fear of the unknown, are all major contributors to this feeling of anxiety. It can affect both those of us returning to work for the first time since last March, as well as those who remained working on campus and have adjusted to a less densely populated campus.
Its important to stress that you are not alone and there are resources across campus to support you through this transition. We encourage you to take some time to review the tips below, refer to the various resources, and reach out for help if needed.
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Ways You Can Calm Nerves At Work
While nervousness may feel out of your control, there are many simple, easy, and effective tasks you can follow that will reduce the challenging aspects of feeling nervous, and in fact improve your performance. Heres 15 ideas for you to try:
Try deep breathing. Breathing exercises are one of the simplest and easiest activities you can practice to reduce symptoms of nervousness, such as slowing your heart rate, improving oxygen exchange, and reducing the fight, flight or freeze response.
Channel your nervous energy into positivity. This may sound difficult, but there is a distinct connection between the feelings of motivation and eagerness, and fear and nervousness. These two states are called eustress and distress – the two sides of the stress coin. You will feel similar reactions to both, such as a raised heart rate, so if you can view your upcoming activity positively, you may find your nervous energy actually boosts your performance. If you’re in a particularly challenging situation, ask yourself “What can I learn from this situation that will help me in the future?”
Practice the task you are nervous about. If you have the time, try practicing what makes you nervous. By running through your presentation, speech, or meeting, youll demystify much of the process, and identify any weak spots which you can improve before the real thing.
If you feel nervous often, it may be worth reading up on the effects of overwhelm and learning how to best manage its effects
Try Some Aerobic Activity
During periods of anxiety, your body is filled with adrenaline. Putting that adrenaline toward aerobic activity can be a great way to improve your anxiety. Exercise has numerous advantages for controlling your anxiety symptoms:
- Exercise burns away stress hormones that create anxiety symptoms.
- Exercise tires your muscles, reducing excess energy and tension.
- Exercise releases endorphins in your brain which can improve overall mood.
- Exercise is linked to healthier breathing.
- Exercise is a healthy distraction.
Aerobic activity, like light jogging or even fast walking, can be extremely effective at reducing the severity of your anxiety symptoms, as well as the anxiety itself.
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Remind Yourself That Your Mind Is Not Always The Best Advisor
Sometimes, you can’t trust yourself.
“Our minds like to constantly tell stories, analyze, judge, give advice, and criticize,” Deibler says. “Sometimes these thoughts are supremely unhelpful to us. Observe what your mind does. Notice the thoughts. Note that they are not objective truths. You get to decide whether the thoughts are worthy of your attention.”
Symptoms Of New Job Anxiety
Anxiety makes itself known in both physical and mental ways. Some people experience sweaty palms, while others get headaches. Here are five symptoms of work anxiety that you may feel when starting a new job:
Just because some anxiety is expected, doesnt mean you have to suffer or continue to feel overwhelmed by work in your personal time. A BetterUp coach can provide the support and guidance you need to understand your anxiety and symptoms and work to overcome them.
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Manage Anxiety With Preparation
Part of avoiding “all or nothing” thinking is being prepared so you can adjust your expectations and behavior when returning to the workplace.
For example, how can you prepare yourself to stay safe in public? Think about how you’ll manage your commute what protective gear and cleaning supplies to keep on your person how you’ll manage eating and drinking while at the workplace and how you’ll interact with colleagues or clients. Even habits as simple as laying out your clothes the night before, packing your work bag in advance and bringing your own lunch can help you feel more in control, Tarry says. She also recommends you give yourself ample time in the morning so you don’t feel rushed to get out the door, which can contribute to anxiety.
Similarly, to put your mind at ease, ask your employer what safety precautions they’ll have in place, Benton says.
Your employer should have a plan for how many people will be onsite how people will move throughout the facilities what safety equipment and cleaning supplies will be available whether masks will be required of employees and clients how to maintain proper ventilation and air flow and other precautions to ensure workers won’t be put at-risk when they return.
Boost Your Time Away From Work
Strive to create a life filled with relationships, events, and activities outside of work that bring you joy, peace, and happiness, Kerfoot recommends. She goes on to explain that a fulfilling life outside of work can:
- minimize the impact of that work-related stress
- build up your resilience in times of stress
- crowd out work-related thoughts
To get started, consider the people, places, and pastimes that bring you joy and calm. How can you add them to your days?
If youre dealing with workplace anxiety, professional support can be incredibly helpful.
How do you know when help from a therapist might have benefit?
Theres no right or wrong time to connect with a therapist, Palacios says, so this decision will be unique to everyone.
In general, however, she recommends seeking professional help when you want your life to be different but you havent found it possible to make changes on your own.
Specifically, Palacios says, this could mean you:
- worry so much you cant function, meet deadlines, or complete tasks
- find it difficult to fall or stay asleep
- feel nervous, edgy, and unlike yourself
- find your usual coping strategies no longer help
- need to take more time off than usual and begin planning your next days off as soon as you return to work
A therapist can offer support with:
- pinpointing triggers
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What Is Phone Anxiety
Phone anxiety is a common fear that is typically seen in those suffering from Social Anxiety Disorder , and it can extend as far as an actual phone phobia at work. However, there are those who dont have SAD, but still deal with this mental health issue each time the phone rings.
There are a number of reasons and past traumas that may contribute to phone call anxiety. When youre face to face, you can pick up on the other persons expressions and body language, while over the phone, there is a greater chance of coming off the wrong way.
One in thirteen people experience a form of anxiety. It affects people across all different job types, personalities, and backgrounds. Its no secret that millennials hate answering their phones, because talking on the phone takes up too much time.
Phone calls are interruptive, involves confrontation, and the possibility of being judgednot to mention, the fear of rejection. Anxiety talking on the phone also has to do with the indifference towards speaking on the phone in place of texting or emailing which has become the forefront of how we communicate today.
What To Do When You’re Feeling Anxiety Before Work
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Anxiety Disorders That Someone With Work Anxiety Might Have Include:
- Generalized anxiety disorder. A person with this disorder has chronic anxiety that often comes with exaggerated worry and tension even when there isnt anything to physically cause it.
- Obsessive compulsive disorder . A person with OCD has unwanted thoughts or repetitive compulsions. This could include performing certain rituals, such as mental checking, counting, or washing your hands. These tasks can provide temporary relief, but the anxiety always comes back in full force.
- Social anxiety disorder.Social Anxiety Disorder is an anxiety disorder where a person feels overwhelming anxiety in everyday social situations. It can be limited to just one type of situation, such as public speaking, or it may be so broad that a person can experience symptoms any time they are around people.
- Panic disorder. Folks with a panic disorder experience repeated episodes of intense fear, often accompanied by physical symptoms such as chest pains, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, and dizziness. This is often called a panic attack.
There are many methods to help you deal with anxiety that you can practice on your own. But, when your work anxiety is stemming from the workplace, heres what might help.
Learn How To Manage Your Anxious Thoughts
Anxiety doesn’t come out of the blue. When you have anxiety attacks, it’s often because your mind tends to spiral into negative thoughts – often without your control. Sometimes you can control this anxiety by keeping these thoughts at bay and learning to dismiss triggers that cause you anxiety.
For many, this is easier said than done. But there are many different strategies you can try that may be effective. These include:
A Question Checklist
When you feel anxious, have a checklist on hand of questions to ask yourself about that anxiety experience. The longer the checklist, the more you’ll find that your thoughts become more realistic. Questions that you can use include:
- Is there a reason to believe something is wrong?
- What evidence is there that something is wrong?
- Is there a chance I’m blowing this out of proportion?
Affirmations not for everyone, but those that do use them find them to be very beneficial. Affirmations are things that you say to yourself to make yourself feel better. These include:
- I’m okay. This is just anxiety and I will get passed this .
- I have a great life and I’m looking forward to tomorrow.
- My anxiety won’t control me.
Getting Used to Physical Symptoms
The latter is known as “exposure therapy” and there are countless ways to create exercises that will habituate you to your panic attack triggers.
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Stop Waiting To Get Permission To Log Off
When work isnt a place you leave at the end of the day, it can be incredibly difficult to stop. And lets face it, when the option is to keep working and feel in control or spend more time on the sofa doom-scrolling or with whining kids, overworking might seem even more attractive. But learning to stop work is a discipline that creates good habits and a necessary step to keeping your energy tank filled.
I am an accomplished professional, but unconsciously I still want someone to tell me, You did a good job today youre done. Well, you need to learn to give yourself that permission.
Psychologist Alice Boyes changed my life when she suggested setting concrete limits around the amount of time I spend on the tasks that make me anxious and tend to overdo. Such shortcuts and hacks that help calm anxiety are called heuristics.
Heres how you could come up with a heuristic to set boundaries on your work hours. At the beginning of your day , create a reasonable to-do list. The key word is reasonable no writing up a list based upon an imaginary 240-hour day and based on experience, youll probably know how long most of your tasks will take. And if you have to guess time for any, guess upwards. Structure your day based around this list, and when youre finished, close your computer. You did good.
Workplace Anxiety: Why You May Be Feeling Anxiety About Your Work Situation
There are various environmental factors that may contribute to increased symptoms of anxiety, such as a stressful workplace.
If you are dealing with anxiety about going to work, often called workplace phobia, the underlying issue may be related to the work you are doing being simply too demanding at the moment. This can cause a host of issues that lead to increased levels of stress and anxiety. People with workplace anxiety may deal with these negative feelings by taking extended sick leave, avoiding certain projects, or even leaving their job.
Say, for example, that you are constantly being given major projects by your boss. These assignments often have tight deadlines and the amount of work that you are given often takes up most of your time, leaving you unable to properly rest without worrying about having to get your work done and making it harder to meet your other important needs. This issue then drags on over the course of the week, building upon itself and further contributing to anxious thoughts and stress.
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