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This topic contains 20 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by Profile Photo Chavy 5 months ago.

  • Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 21 total)
  • Profile Photo
    Participant
    Chavy

    Hi all,

    I’m starting work (part time job) as an assistant teacher in a few days and I’m petrified. The reason for this is that the last few months at work last year were extremely hard for me, though I really do enjoy it when I’m in the right headspace. I was having a lot of anxiety and it was really hard for me to focus at work. I woke up with horrible anxiety this morning (probably related to other thoughts that are bothering me – unrelated to work) and kept on going back to sleep on and off. I finally got up but felt very dazed. I do have skills in place like TIPP (a DBT skill) and some more, but I tend to think very negatively like ‘it won’t work’ and I’ll be overwhelmed by all my anxiety. I am seeing a therapist and on meds. One of the things he told me is that it’s okay to live with tolerance of uncertainty (how will I be, will I get fired, which is catastrophizing.., chas v’shalom…). But it’s so hard and scary!

    I’d love to hear what others have to say on this topic.

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    motivated

    wow ,that is quite interesting to me ,because i thought that with therapy and meds someone must surely be quite fine .

    i read last week in a book written by rabbi doctor abraham j. twerski , in which he states that even if one is in therapy ,the best way to help oneself is by having a group which are working together on the specific topic,let it be self esteem ,or even anxiety ,and everyone shares their stories , and hardships , and by that one can really benefit.

    Relating this topic of help groups ,i am curious to know if there is any online group help community ,which is not in the way of ,one writes a difficulty and the second one which is not particularly in this situation replies, but rather that a few people which are in the same boat are conversing together.

    something like the chatroom in guardyoureyes.com but for emotional wellness.

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    Participant
    Chany

    Hi Chavy, this anxiety is so relatable. I think its great that your working with a therapist and doing what you can to stay afloat but i also think its important to normalize this anxiety in its context. Going back to work and the unknowns are uncomfortable. To not be in touch with these feelings would be worse than acknowledging them and being proactive. Maybe having an extra therapy session for the first few weeks, planning some extra anxiety reduction self care etc. I know for me transitions and change are challenging, and sometimes just leaning into it and knowing I’m going to have lots of anxiety and that the intensity of the feelings are temporary helps more than preparing myself not to have too much anxiety. Let me know if that makes sense.

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    Fay Brezel

    Hey Chavy, yes back to work anxiety is a real thing, even for people who don’t experience lots of anxiety in general. Like Chany stated, transitions and change are not easy for many us. I think it’s excellent that you’re using skills, and communicating with your therapist etc. Knowing that you’re doing your best to control your life and not let anxiety control it instead of you, should make you feel proud and confident.

    Another spin, is to actually imagine the worse case scenario in addition to imagining the plan of how you will deal with it, who your support will be etc. When you do this, anxiety loses so much of its grip because you actually just proved that the worst fears coming true are not that disastrous and fatal after all. See if you can do this perhaps with your therapist so you don’t freak out too much and see what it’s like. Ex. Getting fired (if that is worse case scenario), feeling bad and sad, picking yourself up, speaking to friends, supports, this forum of course, your therapist, positioning yourself to get a new or different job or opportunity that works better for your lifestyle and personality and anxious tendency, etc etc.

    Feel free to keep us posted on how the first few days back went, and know we’re rooting for you!

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    Fay Brezel

    wow ,that is quite interesting to me ,because i thought that with therapy and meds someone must surely be quite fine . i read last week in a book written by rabbi doctor abraham j. twerski , in which he states that even if one is in therapy ,the best way to help oneself is by having a group which are working together on the specific topic,let it be self esteem ,or even anxiety ,and everyone shares their stories , and hardships , and by that one can really benefit. Relating this topic of help groups ,i am curious to know if there is any online group help community ,which is not in the way of ,one writes a difficulty and the second one which is not particularly in this situation replies, but rather that a few people which are in the same boat are conversing together. something like the chatroom in guardyoureyes.com but for emotional wellness.

    Hey motivated, Interesting that you stumbled on that concept in a book from Dr. Twerski. I’d love to know which book so i can take a read. In any case, the concept you allude to is the basis for this platform. Most of the people that chime in to the specific threads, are in a similar boat and can relate and support each other. I’m curious to learn more about the chatrooms you’re referring to. Lmk what those are like. In the meantime we hope you can find this space helpful.

    Profile Photo
    Participant
    Chavy
    Topic Author

    Hi everyone!

    Thank you for all your responses.

    @chany, your response was very heartwarming and supportive. I’m just not sure what you mean by this sentence: To not be in touch with these feelings would be worse than acknowledging them and being proactive. I’m assuming you mean that ignoring feelings isn’t the best thing and not helpful. But acknowledging feelings, being aware of them and being proactive is better. Is that what you mean?

    @fay, thank you for your response! Imagining the worst case scenario is very hard for me in this context bc b”H i’m with my job for a few years. They like me and I really like it. In the past, before this job, I hoped from one to the next. So losing a job would be very very bad to my reputation.. chas v’shalom. I also have my parents anger/frustration in the back of my mind. This is also based on stopping a job, but not due to anxiety. Basically, it would be hard for my parents to be supportive. Is there a lighter, more softer way I can go about thinking of the worst case scenario?

    @Motivated, this forum is accomplishing that 🙂  There is also another online forum kind of like this. The organization Chazkeinu offers that too. You can go to http://www.chazkeinu.org and you’ll see their online forum as one of the many programs they offer. I hope you find it helpful!

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    Fay Brezel

    In response to Chavy's post #4466:

    My pleasure 🙂

    Of course imagining worse case scenario is really difficult, that’s why the anxiety holds onto that to work us up into a frenzy about the doom that would befall us should worse case scenario happen. Of course, no-one wants worse case scenario to be their fate, and imagining it happening can be really scary. If it’s something you want to try though it can be really helpful because your basically training your psyche that even worse case scenario will be manageable and therefore you can fear-less. Not have zero fear, just less fear. Of course you don’t have to do this and if you want to I would recommend doing it with trusted therapist so it’s more manageable. Imagining anything less than worse case scenario can be helpful but also worthless if anxiety manipulates you into obsessing and worrying about only the worse case scenario. Of course, a major part of this practice is imagining and having a solid plan on how you’d deal with worse case scenario. Makes sense?

    Profile Photo
    Participant
    Chavy
    Topic Author

    Hi Fay

    Yes, that makes sense and is so scary – like you said. It would be more productive and helpful to do this with my therapist. I did come up with a coping plan, with some things to tell and remind myself about. So I guess I’ll ask my therapist which route to go on. Meaning, if I should prepare how I’ll act when anxiety comes up or to work with the worst case scenario. I think it’s best to first have a coping plan and then come up with a solid plan of action for the worst case scenario. Does that make sense? Thanks so much for your feedback!

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    Fay Brezel

    In response to Chavy's post #4468:

    Sure that makes sense. And yes, it’s not an either or. You likely should focus on a coping skills plan that you would have regardless, for any and all anxiety that comes up. Those skills would also help you should you decide to take the worse case scenario challenge which would trigger more anxiety essentially. So yes, in any case coping skills first!

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    Chavy
    Topic Author

    Thank you Fay! B”H it’s been good so far though I am still having anxiety in the morning.

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    Dr. Joanne Royer

    In response to Chavy's post #4614:

    OK Chavy you know me by know, what am I going to suggest? WRITE DOWN THOSE THOUGHTS! thoughts are stories the mind throws at you, over time how many years young you are, you’ve had much of that to strengthen that mind muscle and create thoughts that are now habits. We all have a mind. its the same for every human. Its only job is to think. that’s it. so when something happens around you to you, etc….its going to try and understand what the heck? so it rationalizes, it intellectualizes it’s trying to figure things out largely based on the thoughts that have most often been used (since it provides us 60,000 thoughts a day, we choose the ones that stick out). but the best part is you can finally decide how that thought has served you (or not) and what you want to do with it. My suggestion, write down those thoughts. that’s the first step. one thought under another. when you see then on paper you see them as sentences. that’s it, then you can do the next step. OK, the other suggestion is tonight, decide ahead of time how you want to feel going into tomorrow. plant the seed. Are you going to get fired? NO. Are you going to make a mistake? probably you are perfectly imperfect. Are you going to feel joy being around those kids (better you than me!) – Yes. plan ahead of time what you will wake up with. Record it on your phone. play it back in the AM.   You rock! Kuddos for teaching – not an easy thing. You are planting great seeds my friend.

     

    Profile Photo
    Participant
    Chavy
    Topic Author

    Thank you @drjoanne for these tips! They definitely sound very helpful. Thank G-d, my anxiety has let up, so it’s not as bad. But when I journal, I feel so good. It’s like letting it out of your system. I like the idea of each thought (and thoughts under each other) being a sentence. This makes them feel less scary and just statements. Maybe I’ll try it! And, thank you for your compliment! Much appreciated.

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    Dr. Joanne Royer

    In response to Chavy's post #4737:

    Great! yes if you like to write this is a great tool. A Thought Download I call it. taking the stories the mind throws at you and putting them down on paper. then you get to decide how you want to write each of them moving forward or cross out and get rid of altogether. empowering. let us know how it goes!

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    Participant
    CTab

    Hi Chavy,

    I used to feel the same way when I first started working as a waiter in a restaurant. My self-esteem went the way of the rolling stone, and I always dreaded coming in to work, wondering to myself, “Oh boy, let’s see what hits the fan THIS time.” But along the way I learned something that helped me get through my anxiety and self-doubt: and that was in being willing to prove myself wrong. I might think I CAN’T do something or that it’ll blow up in my face–but who knows until you actually try? When I pledged for a social fraternity, one of the first things my future brothers taught me was that the mind will quit ten times before the body does; it’s the same at work, and in all walks of life. Your body has the strength to see things through. So you need to call your own bluff and (excuse these poker metaphors) see what comes down the river before you throw in the towel.

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    Participant
    Chany

    I like that line “the mind will quit ten times before the body does”

    Good one!

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