This is just going to be a small post but I wanted to mention about a small blip I have been going through with anxiety recently.
Going back to work after 2 weeks off for Christmas and New year’s, I expected to be slightly nervous going back but didn’t expect anxiety to come back quite in this much, especially around my sleeping pattern.
My brain went into overdrive a few days before, thinking about what it’d be like going back and I was in that typical anxiety spell of worrying about ridiculous things too much. My mum even made mention of how nervous I seemed to be as I was mentioning going back to work quite a lot and she’d noticed how that wasn’t usually like me. I told her I was nervous about going back and would soon get back into the swing of working again, but didn’t say how anxious I’d really been.
On top of this, my sleep became disturbed which culminated in the night before going back being one of the worst nights of sleep I’d had for months. I ended up having around 2 hours sleep having tried to force myself back into my pattern.
I went back to my work with CBT and while this eased me a little, it wasn’t enough to settle me. It provided me with the ability to write down how I was feeling and what thoughts were going through my head, but I felt a little too frazzled to properly go through them and try to provide more reasonable thoughts. I also found it hard to think of something concrete, such as “I will be ok” and “I am not a failure”, the latter mainly because even though I could list my achievements in the last year, it felt fake and somehow smaller than I’d previously thought. Typical anxiety doing its best to lower my self-esteem and I accepted that maybe I’d left it too late to challenge them for the next day, instead
What I’m going to take from his though is that:
- I need to be more aware of anxiety coming back and prepare for it better. I know quite a few of my triggers (mostly around doing something new and uncertainty) which will help me in the future.
- I need to do more with my CBT work and not leave it until too late to get back to doing my writing and techniques for it. It’s ok recognising my triggers and when they will be, but I also need to do something about getting through them. So I need to start getting back to a routine of checking in with myself, writing down how I’m feeling in a certain day and if I’m anxious, trying to think of thoughts I can bring up that are more realistic and fairer on me (with evidence to back them up).
I’m not going to beat myself up for this too much, but it’s a wake up call that I can’t expect anxiety to not come back and need to prepare for it more on the future. The only trouble is finding time to keep up with my CBT stuff and fit in self-care, but it’s important to make time considering it’s my health.