Increased anxiety and negative thoughts

Hi everyone

For the past few days I’ve been experiencing really bad anxiety especially when I wake up. I’m starting to feel really embarrassed about my long posts so I’ll post a bullet point summary of my thoughts followed by a more detailed version :sweat_smile:

  • I need extra income
  • Obvious answer: get a job
  • Former boss told me if I wanted a job with them, just call him. Great :smiley:
  • Seeing family at the end of the year. Plane tickets and spending = $$$
  • I’m uncertain of what’s going to happen after uni, so I feel like I need a $$$ safety net
  • These reasons seem like strong reasons to get a job
  • Thinking about the job gives me anxiety
  • There’s nothing wrong about the job (so why do I feel this way??)
  • Past few days, anxiety has been worse and at this point idk how to cope
  • I think to myself, I can’t be in this place forever (unemployed, anxious about work)
  • and then it cycles

Here’s the long version for extra details:

Basically I wake up feeling terrified of something, but I can’t think of a specific reason. Yesterday, I told a friend that’s how I felt and he helped me out by streaming a game he was playing and talking to me. He even encouraged me to play Magic The Gathering Arena with him, and that was really fun.

Then today, I was woken up with the same feeling but MUCH worse. The second I started waking up and gaining consciousness, I was hit with it. I felt kind of cold, I felt like I was going to throw up, my body was weak and shaking and that scared feeling was still there. I wanted to ask someone for help but I couldn’t talk or look at my phone because it would hurt my eyes (like, when you just wake up and it’s dark and you look at your phone and it’s way too bright even with the brightness down). It took a while for me to get up because I was scared of fainting. The shaking made my body feel weak.

I think I know the reasons to my anxiety but I don’t know what to do about them. I may have said this somewhere before so I apologize, but I think it needs its own topic…

To keep it short, I want to get a job to get extra income but the thought of it really heightens up my anxiety. I used to get bad anxiety before work, and during my days-off. I’d mentally prepare myself for work, like I was trying to relax and recharge but I’d only be in bed unable to do anything. The job itself was fine, the people were fine, so I don’t even know why I’d feel this awful about it.

This thought process rolls over to why I want to get this job. This may be my last year of uni unless I get into honors next year so I feel like I need a financial safety net. My dad is also planning a vacation at the end of this year where we can visit our family, and at this point it’s really hyped up by everyone. We haven’t seen our extended family in years.

I can only describe this as me wanting to get from Point A to Point B, but my brain isn’t making the connection.


As I type this, I feel fine but I know it’s going to come back. Or it will cycle and tomorrow I’ll feel this bad again when I wake up. I am on medication and I’m seeing a counselor. I’m making an appointment with my Dr to further talk about my depression and anxiety (and maybe address things like ADHD and BPD). She says that I might be able to see a psychiatrist. But I was wondering what your thoughts were on this too. Thank you always :heart:

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first thought: that wasn’t long at all! second thought, I do love bullet pointed stuff! hehe :smiley:

Seeing a professional for it sounds like a great plan and maybe this could lead to some new strategies to tackle the anxiety. You’re trying and you’re making the logical plans, so I’d say those are good steps. Hoping you can get that safety net in order, it will help to at least address one set of worries!

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Hi misty :slightly_smiling_face:
I must agree with @Sita about seeing a professional. It is a very good idea. You mentioned getting anxious about going to a place where you used to work and that is even tho it wasn’t bad. What kind of job was it. Do you think there might be some hidden reasons behind it?

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Hey thanks, @Sita :blush: It definitely wasn’t a fun feeling, especially to start the day with. I hope I get a really good psychiatrist and a better counselor. I’m just determined to get out there and overcome this horrible anxiety. The experiences I’ve been having are completely new so I had no idea how to get out of it. Hopefully things work out.

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Yes, I was happy after seeing my Dr because after so many years I can finally see a psychiatrist and maybe better counseling.

I worked at a pizza place, doing deliveries. The work itself isn’t hard: deliver pizzas, chop some veg, ready the toppings, and clean around. I also love driving around and I find it’s one thing I miss about the job. Everytime I’m driving or in a car I think it’s like working, and I could do it.

I think some fears I had were getting told off for doing something wrong. I was able to quickly overcome it when it happened, but I do remember feeling completely upset when a customer would complain (especially when it wasn’t my fault, I’ve made honest mistakes like bring them a large drink instead of a small drink). Or when my boss would be upset for me doing something completely wrong and he has to do more work. He’s not too abraisive. I think I did pretty well at work and we never got into any arguments unlike other employees.

I was still dating my partner when I worked here so that might factor in. Everytime I felt anxious I could message them. I think I couldn’t stand being alone with my thoughts during downtimes when there were no deliveries and nothing to do. I don’t really have anyone else to talk to frequently like that, and I don’t know if that’s normal. You know, just pull out my phone and start chatting with them (which is ok, everyone does it at work). I don’t want to seem like I’m clingy to my ex, because I think if I had a friend I could chat with, I’d feel ok. It’s hard talking to other employees because they’d leave for a delivery mid-conversation.

I tell myself it’s easy and it would be great to earn money while studying but I just can’t pull myself to do it without feeling this awful anxiety. It’s probably starting to affect me when I’m not even thinking about it.

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From: Micro

Dear Misty,

There is truly no shame or embarrassement to feel for typing long posts. I do too! That’s okay. No one is forced to read if they don’t want to. A long post gives a lot of context too, which can help others help you. All in all, there really isn’t a right or wrong way to post here besides respecting one another of course. Please don’t worry about the length of your posts - it is always welcome, and so are you. Thank you for trusting this community with your heart.

Something that has appeared to me while reading your post was that nowhere you named specifically what your anxiety is about. What are the fears behind this. First off it is absolutely understandable to have a certain amount of stress and anxiety because of life changes that are important and will lead to important outcomes. It’s a human reaction and it displays how much the job, your future, making things right matter to you. However, if this anxiety comes to a point of paralyzing you and leads you to some type of avoidance in the long run, then you’ll probably need to dive into the fears from which your anxiety stem from. For example, you mention this previous job and how you were anticipating it with a lot of anxiety. What is causing it? Do you notice automatic thoughts about it? Could there be a fear of failure? Not performing well? Having to interact with others? etc.

As scary as it can be, I would like to encourage you to try to journal your thoughts and intentionally give a time to your anxiety (in the morning sounds to be a time when it’s quite present!). What is this morning anxiety made of? Try to list your worries. Name them. Safely, of course. Eventually with the help of your therapist so you could feel safer while doing so. A first step could be there in the acknowledgment of what your anxiety is composed of, specifically.

Anxiety feeds itself from being often very foggy and confusing. Generalized anxiety for that is pretty disturbing! However, there are many types of anxiety, and you might benefit from learning to identify by which one you are affected, as it would give you some guidance in terms of how to learn to approach it and cope with it differently. If you picture anxiety as a kind of obstacle in front of you that you need to learn to either walk around or walk with, then you need to learn to identify it. To shift your perspective and understanding of it - of yourself too - from a foggy and weird shape to something that has a real substance, a real shape and identity. The more you will be able to name and understand your fears, the more you will learn how to react to it, and the less you will feel overwhelmed by it.

It is VERY good that you are aware of all of this already. Anxiety can really carry us far without us being aware of it. You are already in a position of putting yourself in a larger perspective and saying “hey, something’s not functioning there”. It’s a real strength! From there, you can absolutely learn to understand more why it’s there, which insecurities and fears it is revealing, and strategize new habits and routines to manage it both in the long run but also when it could be more intense at times. Next time you wake up and feel anxious, what about trying to open a journal entry here and share what’s on your heart? How you feel - naming emotions and diving into the source of those fears. It can be challenging to identify all these automatic thoughts that feed your stress, but it’s also really worth it as it will help you understand yourself better. But, small steps always. Take it easy and be patient with yourself while doing so. Anxiety is a beast, but it doesn’t have to ruin your life. Well done for already taking actions for it and seeking ways to help yourself more and more. Your anxiety is an over-reaction to something, a kind of red flag to learn to listen to, but it’s surely not your enemy. You can learn a lot from it. And I have NO DOUBT that you are going to grow so much from it too. I believe in you 10000%. :hrtlegolove:

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Hey Micro, I’ve been looking for this reply and haven’t found it until now–for that I sincerely apologize!

I was able to avoid working over the summer last year which has relieved my anxiety a lot, but I know that I should really get some income one way or another at some point. I’m trying to remember what made me anxious about my previous job, because all I really remember is that before each shift I really was telling myself that there is no reason to be anxious. I liked the people I was working with, if I made a mistake (which I did, and got told off pretty harshly at times) I was able to move on and get on with the job, and I actually did like the job… as awful as it was. I was just glad to have that experience and earn money, and I believe I can do it when I’m not busy with uni. I have tried many times to pinpoint what it is exactly that’s worrying me about this job. I’m pretty sure I was a good employee too.

I think as time goes on, I feel a bit more confident and can return to working at the end of my studies. Maybe I’ll even land a better job after my degree–my professors seem to believe in me enough to even suggest postgraduate studies so maybe there’s something in me that’s worthy in this career path! I guess my issue is that I have all these “rational” thoughts but my subconscious/my brain makes me feel otherwise. I am afraid of making mistakes in general. I am afraid of disappointing people, especially if it has severe consequences. I know the feeling of unintentionally angering someone and being their target of bullying and abuse. I fear that something unintentional or accidental gets taken too seriously and pinned on me I guess. I didn’t have this fear while working at my previous job, though, because I know others have done much worse and I really was just doing my tasks lol

Thank you for encouraging me to post a journal entry on my anxiety, that’s a really good idea and I will keep that in mind! I think I am struggling with the physical journals I am keeping right now because I’m too distracted by how I want it to look vs actually just writing stuff down :sweat_smile: I appreciate your response and sorry again for my late reply!!

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