How do I become myself again?

I am often described as a confident, joyful person, full of life extrovert who spreads positive vibes wherever I go. I described myself as such as well, before “losing” myself in light of what I’m going through. I work in an intense environment and have been on an extremely tough project for the past 8 months. Ever since, I’m having trouble finding myself again. I became easily irritable, disconnected, and avoid social interactions even with my family. I have lost confidence at a professional and personal level; which is significantly affecting my friendships. I constantly need validation and reassurance, which often leads to me overreacting/acting in what might me known as “toxic behaviour”. I avoid spending with my family because they ask too many questions. Basically, I am becoming everything I’m not and everything I don’t want to be. And I think I have waited for too long to just be able to “bounce back” by myself - which is why I’m reaching out.
Asked by Arthur Green
Answered
11/29/2021

Hello and thank you for reaching out to Betterhelp for support with your question. It sounds like everything was going fairly well and you were happy with your personality/the energy that you projected onto those around you until the shift at work. When things got harder, you saw more of a struggle than in the past. Many people who have excelled in everything they have tried throughout life get a bit of that shock when something pushes them to a new limit and tests their ability to be resilient. This work project must be very complex. Keep in mind that if you are struggling with something, chances are someone else on the project as well is struggling as well. (If it is only you then consider that if someone else were working in your spot, they would also be struggling). Once we start to lose ourselves, time to be the one who provides that validation to start turning things around. 

Your friends and family won't cure how you are feeling at work nor are they judging you for what you are experiencing. It seems very internal in nature. I would suggest utilizing thought challenging when you start to think negatively about yourself and visualize a Stop Sign at the thoughts that are not serving you. Then challenge yourself to identify a more productive way to view the same situation. You have to build yourself up via internal dialogue so that your feelings and behaviors start to shift as a result. Your friends and family should not have to provide that validation and reassurance, so remind yourself of the appropriate role that they should be playing. When you focus on the friendships as a 50/50 rather than trying to obtain that extra validation from them, it can help shift the perspective a bit. 

Whatever you are experiencing, keep in mind that feelings are always changing. You are not committed to these specific feelings for longer in this moment and if your thoughts start to become a bit more empowered, you will naturally start to take on more of that mentality. 

 

All the best! 

(LMHC, CRC)