Careers Answers

Should I quit being a teacher?

Hello, So you've worked really hard to become a teacher, and it took a lot of time. I'm not going to tell you whether you should quit the profession or not, but I also believe that it's common when facing a lot of frustration trying something that's relatively new, it's easy to feel like it's impossible and that things can't get better. You also don't seem to be getting a lot of support as you're starting this profession. You're also starting the career at a time when there is a massive teacher shortage, and so maybe you're being asked to take on more than you normally would. Without having a regular classroom and the ability to build rapport and develop a stable routine at one particular location, this is a very, very difficult way to start.  You mentioned that you had a mentor who helped you when you were training, and it sounds like you've lost some of that support and guidance. You're losing passion and motivation, but that's not necessarily because you're in the wrong field, but perhaps because your early experiences as a teacher aren't at all what you expected, and they aren't necessarily indicative of what your future experiences will be like. Your statement of, "I feel like it has ruined my experience for me and it's doubting my skills as a teacher" suggests that you know that your current experiences aren't providing necessarily what you need as someone starting out as a teacher. It also suggests that you know that what your experiences are currently aren't reflective of what your experiences will be like in the future. It's common for people to seek therapy when experiencing work-related stress, especially when new at a job or in a career. This is a challenging time for you, and you may ultimately decide that teaching is not for you and that there is something else you'd prefer to do (even though it's hard now to know what you would do instead, the fact that you've made it this far through school and being placed in this position provides evidence that you could be successful in a number of different fields), but with some additional support it can get easier. It may also just take some time. My suggestion is to consider participating in therapy (whether that be on this platform or elsewhere in your community). I wish you the best of luck, and if you have any additional questions or if I can help at all, just let me know. Remember that you're probably doing much better than you realize, so try to pay attention to the evidence that shows that you're adapting, that you're competent, and that you're growing. Take care, Nicholas DeFazio, MRC, LPCC-S, LICDC
(MRC, LPCC-S, LICDC)
Answered on 11/10/2022

I feel anxious at my new job and want to quit

Hi! Thank you for reaching out for help! I know that it can be challenging to navigate anxiety in the workplace. Sometimes there are added pressures from co-workers, employers and sometimes even family to live up to certain expectations at work. There are a few things that I would consider when exploring anxiety at work. Anxiety often times is acting as an alarm system in our body. Anxiety is not always a bad thing. It often is highlighting something that we need to be more mindful of, or something we might need to explore within ourselves. So I would begin by asking yourself if there is something this anxiety might be highlighting? Is there something specific at work that feels overwhelming? Are the people you work with contributing? Would communicating with your boss or coworkers more effectively help the anxiety decrease?  Something else I would explore would be what does your self care look like outside of work? For many people, self care is simply making sure they are spending enough alone time with themselves doing something they think helps them relax. I like to explain to my clients that self care is something so much bigger and better than simply relaxing. Self care should help you grow your capacity to handle stress. Self care is the thing or the things we do that help our emotions come back into alignment. Self care helps us take the weight of stress and anxiety and put it down and/or help us eliminate it completely. Stress and anxiety are unavoidable in life, but when we have an intentional plan in place to help us manage our stress and anxiety, it becomes something that should ultimately make us stronger. I would encourage you to find and establish a good self care plan to hopefully help the stress and anxiety you are experiencing at work feel more manageable.  Lastly I would encourage you to find a therapist that might be able to help you explore more specific details of your anxiety at work. I am not sure if a therapist would tell you if you should or should not quit your job, but I would imagine that they will help you figure out where this stress and anxiety is stemming from and help you consider all of your options.  I hope you found this helpful and will take some time to explore what your anxiety might be highlighting and what type of self care you might be able to implement into your daily routine. Best wishes!
(MSW, LCSW)
Answered on 11/09/2022

I find it difficult to express my hurt when I’ve been wronged. I find it difficult stand up for me.

Hi Dee,  There are many reasons one can feel insecure or anxious about speaking up and also about how others view us.  One year at a job is actually not that long by the way, but I do hear you that you say you really do not feel comfortable setting boundaries and speaking up for yourself. You describe yourself as being conflict-avoidant so I am thinking it sounds like you are having trouble setting boundaries.  People can have trouble setting boundaries for various reasons, including how they were raised, etc.  If your boundaries were violated as a kid, for example, you might have trouble knowing how to maintain appropriate boundaries as an adult.  This can include asking for what you need and approprately saying no to requests that are not in your job description, for example. You ask what can you do.  Let's do some "fact checking".  What evidence do you have that there is word around the office that you are doing a bad job?  Please notice how you tend to focus on that vs. the fact that your BOSS (probably way more important) is telling you he or she does not think so.  You even consider that he or she is isn't telling you the truth to make you feel better, but I think this is probably doubtful because most bosses care much more about the job you do vs preserving your feelings.  Of course we hope they care about your feelings but why would he or she be essentially telling you not to worry if you were not a valued employee?  Also, if you are able to utilize the work from home option then I agree this is fortunate for now and let's do another fact check: are you sure you misuse it?  I am reminding you to focus on the positive feedback you are getting and not only the perceived negative.  This is not to minimize your feelings at all; I get that you care a lot about your job and work relationships a lot while at the same time learning how to speak up for yourself and your needs.  So hang in there, take deep breaths, and notice how you talk to yourself.  We as humans can often be our "own worst enemy" and it's always good to be aware of negative self talk, and then work on changing this.  Be gentle with yourself; it actually sounds like you are doing great at your job!
Answered on 11/09/2022

How to cope with overthinking and overwhelmed by stress without breaking down

Dear Ire: I am truly sorry that you are feeling such great pain, and have been enduring such great emotional distress! It seems that you have been working hard for years in order to assure graduation, with your degree.  It also appears as if right now you need a place, and the space to first focus on what is the most distressing aspects of your current life as a student, and to find the means to resolve those underlying issues.  Coping with these distressing elements, and seeking relief for what you describe above, is the first priority (it seems to me), because if that emergent crisis that you are undergoing is not addressed, and a resolution does not happen, you already anticipate what will occur: You “breaking down”.  So therefore, the first order of business is prevention of the “breaking down”.  This preventive step can help protect all that you have already done, plus will also preserve your health, and wellness.    Coping without “breaking down”, involves first of all: An Assessment.  Thereafter:  Decisions, and ensuing protective Actions.  There are planning questions that you can embrace, so as to discern the short term, and long term problems that you may be facing, and that can then be part of a plan to resolve what troubles you.  These questions can include the following inquiries: What is it that is leading you to feel so mentally exhausted, now?  Can you identify how much rest you will need in order to not “break down”?  When you indicate that you are “feeling too much at once”, can you list, and identify what it is exactly that you are presently feeling?  Are there also fears?  Are there perhaps any other traumatic events from either the past, or the present?  The answers to these questions, can lead you to prioritize what happens next.  You get to make this determination, and if you need help, you can go to a therapist to possibly help you structure this within the next few days, so that you can decide how it is that you will orchestrate what happens next, and how to execute the actions that will meet your immediate, and longer term needs. Please, notice that I am only addressing you, and your determinations, and your ensuing choices.  You are the only one who can play an active role on what your needs are, and how these needs can be addressed.  Once that is done, then you can enlist the opinion of others, and define how it is that those opinions can either help you, or not, but everything can be subsumed under your determinations, and decisions, moving forward. I hope this is a helpful anteroom to provide you the necessary steps to organize your set of actions, moving forward toward your success.
(M.S.W., L.C.S.W.)
Answered on 11/08/2022

How can I feel better about myself or feel like I know my purpose?

Thank you for your question, and please know you are not alone in feeling the way you do. Having a purpose, and knowing that we are fulfilling our purpose, is very important, and often our sense of self is heavily influenced by this. Sometimes feeling overwhelmed can be just from being really busy with very little breaks, but it can also be a sign that it is a good time to take a look at life and really figure out if what we are doing right now matches where and what we want to be down the road. A change in direction is sometimes needed, and one way to determine if that is the best thing to do is to work with a therapist or someone with a similar role to help you evaluate your current path and explore the pros, cons, and where your interests and attention really fall in comparison to where you are spending your time, energy and sometimes money.  Change and redirection can look like all kinds of things depending on circumstances and resources or options available, so recognizing the big and little pictures can help us figure out where to start. For example, maybe there is a way to change up your daily or weekly schedule, or shift environments, and that is what makes the difference. I am just tossing this out as examples, and understand that it might not apply to your individual life. Having emotional support can also be very helpful during these types of times. If you have a strong support system, or a particular go-to person for when you talking things out would be helpful, it is OK to lean on them. However, sometimes that support just isn't there or maybe we aren't ready to share what we are struggling with just yet. That is where resources like BetterHelp can be beneficial. It is also important to stay in touch with how you are feeling, as hopelessness and anxiety could be indicators of something else going on besides your current situational/life stressors. Additionally, try to stay mindful about how you are coping and what your daily habits look like as you are coping with these feelings. If at any point you feel like you are not able to handle things, please call 988 for immediate help. This is like 911 for mental health emergencies.
Answered on 11/04/2022

What are some grounding exercises to help with exam anxiety?

Hi, and thanks for your question.   First of all, as I understand it, even *getting into* nursing school is incredibly difficult, so I'd like to commend you for the accomplishments you've already achieved in getting to where you're currently at. It would stand to reason that the NCLEX is even more challenging than getting into nursing school itself, and of course, that challenge may compounded by the realization of "knowing what you don't know" that comes with having completed a course of education in a very important profession. That being said, conscientious persons such as yourself might be especially prone to second-guessing themselves, "imposter syndrome" and the like. Knowing (and normalizing) that what you're going through is "a thing" (i.e., many nursing students and students of other healthcare professions experience a similar phenomenon) is half the battle, so to speak. The other half, as you may have already identified, is having some tools to keep those kinds of thoughts in check. 1. Be aware of your thoughts (and then control them before they control you) This speaks to the tendency we all have to get into patterns of thinking that may perpetuate additional unhelpful thoughts and behaviors. Become aware of what you're thinking, what may have triggered those thoughts at that particular moment, stop yourself from any continued thinking of the unhelpful thought, and then develop a more reality-based, compassionate and helpful thought to replace the *un*helpful thought with. Here's an example... Unhelpful thought: "I'm never going to pass this test." To self: "STOP." Helpful thought: "This test is important to me, and I'm going to try my best. The outcome beyond that is unknown at this time." 2. Focus on the present-moment Anxious symptoms tend to be the consequence of too much "future living" (or in other words, focusing too much on things that haven't happened yet which you don't have control over) whereas depressive symptoms tend to be the consequence of too much "past living" (or in other words, focusing too much on things that already happened that you no longer have control over). When we're focused on the present moment, *that* is truly the only moment we have control over. Some ways to stay focused on the present moment are: Focusing on the physical sensation of your body in space and time, by directing your attention to the feeling of your body in a chair; the feeling of your feet on the ground; the feeling of a cold or hot beverage on your lips, down your throat, and into your belly Diaphragmatic breathing exercises in which you lay flat on the ground or a surface and place one hand on your upper chest and one hand on your belly, breathing in such a way as to *only* move your belly. Breathe in slowly for a count of 3, and breathe out slowly for a count of 5. Repeat this about three times. Repeat the same series of inhales and exhales, but breathe in for 4 and out for 6, repeating about three times. Some people find it helpful to repeat an encouraging/calming mantra to themselves while breathing in and out, or to visualize a flower opening and closing along with their inhale/exhale. Once you've gotten the hang of this exercise while laying down, it can be done anywhere, whether sitting or standing, and after mastering the belly breathing component, you needn't always put your hand on your belly and/or chest. 3. Transcend the Feeling/"Name It To Tame It" When you notice yourself feeling anxious or depressed, instead of identifying with the feeling (e.g., "I'm anxious,"), note to yourself that "Anxiety is happening." Simply reframing the situation in a slightly depersonalized way can help you gain just enough objective distance to allow the more "long-range" view of yourself to step in and intervene, perhaps implementing one of the above strategies or otherwise engaging your behavioral activation system to disrupt the potential pattern of unhelpful thoughts. 4. Five Senses Grounding Techniques In this approach, you'll focus your attention on your five senses (which is another way of accessing the present moment), and direct yourself to name: 5 things you can see 4 things you can hear 3 things you can feel 2 things you can smell 1 thing you can taste Another other point of potential interest in your particular situation may be to avoid overthinking and second guessing during the actual test administration by allowing yourself a certain amount of time of consider the answer to a question, and if you're stuck between answers or find yourself frozen on a question, mark it and return to it later. Don't allow yourself to ruminate excessively on whether or not a particular answer is correct; if it's not readily apparent to you within a reasonable amount of time, accept that reality, and move forward to answer other questions (to keep your momentum going and to keep any test anxiety from creeping in), and return to the "stickier" questions later. One other thing to consider is that your experience with this testing process can be valuable in helping you understand the experience others may have with anxiety and depression, as well as various processes for overcoming and working through difficulty. It's almost like a "laboratory" of sorts, and how you get through this particular challenge can be of benefit to you professionally if you remain curious, compassionate, and non-judgmental toward yourself along the way. You may even want to consider journaling about this time in your life, as it can not only help you solidify the lessons you're learning about the emotional/psychological/behavioral aspect of what you're going through, but it can also help you to maintain your eye on the bigger picture -- because some day, you'll look back on these times and how you get through it can become a resource to you in regard to other challenges that will come your way in the future. Best wishes to you!
(M.A., LMFT)
Answered on 10/27/2022

How do i find my purpose in life? And how do i know if i’m having an anxiety/depression attack?

Hi Luna,   Thank you for your question. It sounds as if you are worried about what the future holds for you. It sounds as if anxiety prevents you from doing things you would like to, and it is getting you down. You want to succeed and have a sense of what this means to you. Some days sound like there is a lot of hopelessness and that you can't get out of bed? It sounds, too, as if you don’t know if you are anxious or depressed but something does not feel right for you- you have lost a sense of if you have a future at all, though you have also reached out for help.   It might surprise you that it isn’t uncommon to feel this way and uncertainty around the future can be very difficult to sit with. Some people might call it something else, or have a name for it, which can be isolating. The most important thing to know is that this is how you feel, it is your reality, and it is valid. At the moment, working out why you feel this way and how to change it is hard, which is why counseling can help.   The first step in learning to cope with how we are feeling about uncertainty is to listen to the wisdom of your body. You want to freely admit and be honest, accepting that just because you're struggling with how you feel doesn't mean you're weak, it just means you're human. Perhaps list all your sources of stress and how you might react to them differently and with empathy for yourself. And coming to terms with a problem is difficult, unless we stop denying that there is a problem with how it is responded to. You have been fine up until now, good enough is more achievable than perfect, but if you want to get up and face the day, something needs to change.   The kind of thoughts that we tell ourselves when we feel we can't cope give us permission to continue to stay in denial and not deal with our emotions, because that can be kind of scary, dealing with emotions, because what does that mean? It doesn't mean you don't want change things; but it might mean you may need help to see the resources you have to cope with what you are experiencing right now.   Thinking about the future can be difficult. Sometimes, when life becomes difficult, we lose track of ourselves, including the things, people and connections that are important to us. Success can be a measure of happiness. I'd invite you to have a think about the quality of the relationships you have. How do you know your friends are just that and what stops you talking openly about how you are feeling? Emotional intimacy, active listening, support, and companionships are all important. When these are missing in your life, it could lead to feelings of emptiness and loneliness, too. Think about how you would be with a friend if they were going through what you are experiencing. Often, we don’t speak to ourselves the same way we do our friends, which damages our relationship with ourselves.   Likewise, to improve our relationship with ourselves, it can be helpful to set goals that feel manageable given where you are at the moment. Like with creating content for YouTube and TikTok- is it fair to expect yourself to put yourself out there when you're feeling so vulnerable and unsure where to start?   When we have an expectation of ourselves that is asking too much, it can be aspirational, but unrealistic expectations seem to get in the way of consistency at least as often as they support it.   Sometimes our expectations and plans can be so lofty we forget where we are and don't take into consideration how we feel, it is disempowering. As an alternative, we can create a simple list of things you feel able to do that moves you towards the general direction of your goal. For example, you could break down your goal to be on YouTube into smaller, manageable steps.   Organic growth over time helps identify what we can do with the resources we have. It helps to appreciate that our energy levels change, and our resilience can ebb and grow. And anything that gets us to happily show up every day is the mechanism- expectations that are too high lead to feeling like we want to shut down.   Even if it feels overwhelming and painful, thinking and talking about significant feelings, events or thoughts that trouble you may help you process them. Depending on how strong you feel about these events, going through the process with a counselor is highly advisable.   Take care of your physical needs. When bodies are run down, you're more susceptible to burnout. Make sure you have a good diet. Avoid abusing yourself with rigid diets. Try to get as much exercise as you realistically can, avoid addictive substances and get plenty of sleep. Attend the basic needs you're not attending, eating healthy, not too much caffeine and being mindful of getting enough sleep.   And then you also want to nurture yourself more than others. You need to show up for you. You need to have a better balance and you do have a choice, although it is hard, to do so. I want you to always ask yourself, what am I doing today to nurture myself while I'm still there for others and away with my concerns?   It is important to remember that everyone needs support sometimes and care always, including you. Sometimes social media can impact this. Be mindful when you're on social media how much time you spend there and what type of accounts you follow. How people present themselves is often different to their life - they present their best or worst parts of their day, but rarely show everything, particularly the mundane or things that won’t get them ‘likes’. It can cause comparative behavior, where one never scores higher than the ones that seem ‘perfect’ or like they have their lives together.   Making time for self-care and listening to yourself is an important part of life. Not taking care of your needs can cause problems of self-worth which could also impact feelings of needing to be more and, do more, too. 
(MA, Counselling, Cognitive, Behaviour, Therapy, Level, 5, PGDIP, Integrative, Counselling)
Answered on 10/18/2022

How do I deal with child trauma that resulted into people pleasing and to set boundaries?

Content/Trigger Warning: Please be advised that the article below might mention trauma-related topics that include types of physical abuse & neglect that could be triggering. Hello Jem, this is an excellent question.  I am often working with clients who experience complex trauma, which is not necessarily overt physical abuse or neglect.  Many of us develop a layer of complex trauma because of a parent or parents were unpredictably supportive or angry with their children when they expressed their needs and tried to exert boundaries.  When you may have initially first tried to find your voice, with your family of origin, to set your boundaries and find your own strong identity which usually starts to happen around the age of 10 and continues throughout your teen years, you might have needed to shut it down to feel safe again.   This is a trauma response called "fawning" which allows a person to maintain engagement in potentially unpredictable and invalidating relationships.  Fawning looks and feels much like you describe.  It is a people pleasing that invalidates the persons individual needs, in favor of maintaining closeness at all costs and preventing potential problems and conflicts that almost always arise in relationships that negotiate and then respect boundaries.  This is harder for you to do because doing so may have a feeling of fear and anxiety connected to it, and, of course, it is usually a learned skill over many years developed in later childhood.  Many of us experience deep connections in our work relationships which then can take on a  similar dynamics to that in our families since we spend so much time together.  These relationships can actually trigger your trauma response since inherent in work is the feeling that it is threatening to your well being if you are not perceived positively. Of course, feeling guilty for staying in your lane at work, and not taking on other's tasks for them, and or, sharing with others your limits around time and energy, is not easy for you when you haven't practiced it!   It can certainly help you to understand how to communicate through this with others using techniques like reflective language.  This is something you can certainly practice at get better at at any age.  It can also help you to seek treatment that specifically addresses your learned trauma response.  This can be achieved in many ways depending on your style as a person and the way you process things in the world. I use psychodynamic principles as well as family systems frame works to help my clients gain a deeper understanding of themselves.  As they do this, much of the charge in their story begins to diminish by being seen, validated and clearly expressed.  Having words to put to your feelings and to be able to talk about it with others in your life, not just in your therapy, but with friends, romantic partners and even your family, is often the key to finding your boundaries and limits in your personal relationships.  This is a form of therapy that requires a commitment of time, and you may indeed want to give your therapy time, especially if you are carrying layers of confusion and family traumas.   A way to reduce your symptoms quickly, and can even be important to do in conjunction with traditional talk therapy, is using a treatment technique called EMDR, that helps clients rework their trauma response.  It is possible to find a therapist who uses EMDR in conjunction with traditional talk therapy.  Some therapists also use a form of CBT that focuses directly on their trauma.  This can also be effective depending on how you may prefer to work through your challenges.   In any of these methods you may expect to find a certain amount of self awareness and relief within a few months of care.  However, a deeper more lasting change in you often happens around 6 months of care and well into a year.   Sometimes you will uncover much inside you in the process of therapy that you will absolutely want to keep working on and you will realize that your personal growth is enhanced, you feel stronger in your life and your relationships and ready for change, and you witness how being validated in treatment effects you.  If you can, consider developing a therapy "relationship" to help you work through your childhood traumas.   I hope that this helps you make some choices for yourself in moving forward and I want to wish you all the best.  Thank you as well for asking such an important clear question. Warmly, Elise B. Jacobson, LICSW Social Worker
Answered on 07/20/2022

How can i deal with extreme anxiety at work and feeling overwhelmed so i can't think straight?

Hi Betty! Thank you so much reaching out for support on the Better Help platform! I am so glad that you decided to ask this important question related to the topic of anxiety at work. Although many individuals do report feelings of anxiety, the actual symptoms an individual can experience can fluctuate and be different from person to person. How would you describe your own personal experience of anxiety? When did the feelings of anxiousness begin for you? It may be helpful to create a timeline of your anxiety experience as a means to highlight your overall history of anxiety. I can tell that you are committed to doing well at work and your job performance is very much a priority and important to you. What do you do for work? How long have you been doing this type of work? You mentioned that you have some feelings of fear related to making mistakes at your job. Does this mostly come up at work or does it also come up at other points in your life? If you were to make an error, what would be the consequence? It sounds like you have tried to rationalize your feelings of anxiety in the past. Some strategies to manage anxiety at work may include deep breathing exercises, such as four square breathing, belly breathing and butterfly breathing. Depending on the type of work you do, there may be other ways to incorporate anxiety reduction skills into your daily work routine. In addition to incorporating coping skills at work, you may want to consider practicing anxiety reduction techniques when you are not at work, so that utilizing these strategies at work feel more reasonable and attainable.  It sounds like you have a really introspective way of identifying your own personal experience with anxiety. What strategies and techniques have worked for you in the past to manage your feelings of anxiousness? Would you be willing to create a daily mood chart? It may be helpful to rate the frequency and intensity of your feelings of anxiousness as a means to relate and observe your feelings in connection to the things going on in your day to day life. It can be essential to establish a connection between thoughts, feelings and behavior. This is the founding principle of cognitive behavioral therapy. The idea is if you can change your thoughts, you can change your feelings as well as your behavior. In your question, you had mentioned that you would like to learn how to manage your feelings of anxiety at work. I can tell that you are committed to making positive changes in your life. In addition to the other strategies that I mentioned, it would be awesome if you could practice saying a positive affirmation on a daily basis. An example of a self affirming statement is: "I choose to create a safe space for myself to feel my feelings that I feel. I am okay with this and I choose to free myself from feelings of anxiety and stress. I am doing really well. Today is going to be a great day!" You can always personalize this kind of statement to meet your own needs and incorporate your personal inner voice. Try repeating a positive quote throughout your day and while you are working. This will also likely assist you in the process of boosting your overall confidence! If you would like more ideas or would like to check out the positive affirmation for the day, you can always look online for self affirming statements. I recommend looking into the work of Louise Hay! "You Can Heal Your Life" is an amazing and inspiring book by Louise Hay. It seems like you have already done the first step in recognizing your emotional state of mind and have begun the process of assessing your feelings of anxiousness. It may be helpful to ask yourself about your inner experience of anxiety and become an observer on your own feelings. It is ideal to try to make sense of the feelings that you are having to the best of your ability. You had stated that you have identified an increase in feelings of anxiety over the past year. If you had to guess, why do you think that you have been experiencing high levels of stress and anxiety over the past year? What would you say are some of your triggers? Perhaps it may be worthwhile for you to utilize self care skills as a means to manage and improve your overall symptoms presentation. As a provisionally licensed art therapist, I always recommend taking some time to create art. It is a little known fact that drawing from and coloring within a circle can lower heart rate and reduce blood pressure. This means that drawing within a circle has been scientifically proven to bring about feelings of relaxation. If you have not already, you may want to print some coloring pages, such as mandalas, or buy an adult coloring book. Utilize colored pencils, crayons, chalk pastels and gel pens to fill in various states within the circular space. If you can, you may want to pair the coloring with a hot cup of tea or a cool drink or listen to music or light a candle. This can be a very grounding experience to incorporate the five senses into art making activities. I also recommend individual counseling at this time. Meeting with a counselor on a weekly or biweekly basis can help you build your skill set and learn anxiety reduction skills. Mindfulness-based techniques are typically a first line of defense in my practice as a therapist. If mindfulness is not for you, there are other ways to reduce your feels of anxiety. The first step is identifying the feelings of anxiety and observing triggers. As I am typing up my response to your question, I came across this article that may also provide some additional answers and insight into the question you had asked! https://www.cnbc.com/2022/06/22/a-psychotherapist-shares-the-exercises-she-uses-every-day-to-be-more-confident.html I hope that my response was helpful for you in some way!
(LMHC, ATR-P, MS, NCC)
Answered on 06/26/2022

How can I rest? Get more energy throughout the day?

Hello and thank you for taking the time to share some of your experiences.  If it often difficult to manage work and personal stresses in our daily lives.  I think it is safe to say that our body reacts to stressful situations in a number of ways and yes, the reactions often include what you are experiencing.  With this being said, there are a couple of things I would like to suggest for you to try to integrate into a daily routine to assist you with stressful situations.  First, daily self-care is so important as it allows us to reset our body (physically) and our minds (emotionally). Self-care behaviors are good to implement daily, at least one hour per day. Self-care does not have to be complicated as it is a way to reduce overthinking and over exertion of our mind.  So, watching a funny show or movie, taking a long bath with soft smelling candles and some soft music, taking a walk in the park or on the beach, mediation or yoga with soft music and maybe soft smelling candles, going to the gym/exercising, dimming your lights to a soft yellow or orange color, refraining from serious or in-depth conversations, refraining from working, refraining from taking care of your children (if you have any), and/or refraining from any outside distractions during your self-care time.  It takes exercising these self-care behavioral patterns daily, until it becomes a routine without you even thinking about it.  Second, being okay with taking 5-10 minute breaks during work hours and walk around outside in the sun or sitting in your car or walking around the parking lot.  This will allow you to breathe in some fresh air throughout your day and release tension in your shoulders and back areas. It will also assist you with developing pro-active behaviors and not be reactive.  Count to 5 or 10 before responding to confrontations and/or conversations that others engage you in.  It is not always what is said, it is also how it is said (initiating and responding). Try not to feel that you have to eat lunch with others or spend your break times with others.  Take time to be by yourself, because this is your personal time.  Often times, eating lunch by yourself can help, because it reduces the need to engage with others when you do not wish to do so.  It allows you to take that pressure off of yourself and be okay with your "self-time."  Others may not agree or or understand your positions, but that is okay.  It's okay to agree to disagree.  Third, it is okay that you are not okay.  Everyone handles stresses in different ways, because we are all different.  Our body chemistry is different.  It is okay that you want or need to take a break for yourself after work.  Go for an hour or 30 minute drive after work to allow yourself to leave work at work and focus on what your evening will be like.  Allow yourself to breathe and be okay with enjoying the rest of your day doing what you want to do.  Try not to pressure yourself to please others or receive approval (validation) from others about your decisions.  Fourth, take an entire day at least once a week to focus on you.  You deserve it and you work hard for it.  Fifth, take one day at a time, one hour at a time, one minute at a time, and one second at a time.  Rome wasn't created in one day and we are unable to create and solve our situations in one day.  Tomorrow, will take care of itself when it gets here.  Live for today and let tomorrow starts when it gets here.  Sixth, enjoy embracing the good and the positive in your life.  Utilize drawing, coloring, painting, writing, reading, or any art or craft you can do to keep your mind from being idle.  If you do not have a hobby, identify one and embrace it. An idle mind is the devil's workshop.  Guard your mind with peaceful thoughts and positive actions.  Seventh, self-talk is what we tell ourselves to be true, even if it is not.  Change your self-talk to positive constructive actions.  Handle or work to resolve what you have control of and let the rest go. As we often say, everyone should stay in their lane.  We only have control over ourselves and we cannot make anyone do anything. Eighth, manage your diet in the amount of caffeine you drink (if any). Eat fruits and vegetables daily. Feed your body healthy foods, so it can provide your brain and body with healthy nutrients.  Be sure you are getting checkups from your doctor and sharing your concerns with him/her.  An unhealthy body is an unhealthy mind.  The body and mind works together to create an overall healthy YOU.  Lastly, forgive yourself for whatever is holding you back or has held you back. Forgive yourself for the decisions you made that did not turn out as you expected them to.  Let it go, because you cannot change what is already done.  We learn from choices and our decisions so we can do better.  Seek professional individual help, if you feel like you need it.  Do not let it fester until it is out of control.  Professional help is here and ready when you are ready! I hope I have said something to encourage you to "Embrace Life Responsibly" in being the best version of YOURSELF!! Take care, Wendy
(MA, MFT, LPC)
Answered on 06/23/2022

How can I deal with daily anxiety/stress?

Thank you for the question, and for sharing your situation. The image you paint is certainly striking! I can understand how anxiety-provoking it must be to feel isolated and alone, drowning in your own thoughts! And you are absolutely correct that anxiety and stress can produce physical symptoms, as our body reacts to what our mind perceives as a threat. Shortness of breath, racing heart, headaches and even chest pains are all commonly associated with anxiety, with the production of cortisol and the “fight or flight” response. Your gastrointestinal problems may very well be your body’s way of communicating stress, as you suspect, but of course it is wise to get checked out by your healthcare provider as a first step. Bloating and stomach pain can be symptoms of several different physical conditions, unrelated to simple anxiety or stress. I encourage you to discuss these symptoms with a trusted doctor, to rule out a medical problem that may require attention.      Once your doctor has given you the all-clear, there are a number of strategies and techniques that have been demonstrated to be effective in reducing and managing anxiety. Many are grounded in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) models. I will describe a few techniques below, and I encourage you to look further for more detailed information, if any seem particularly helpful. If you are working with a therapist, they can also certainly help you identify opportunities to incorporate these in your daily life and practice them so that your anxiety is more manageable.   1. Change your environment  Your environment includes not only work and home, but also your physiological environment. Are you getting enough sleep? Is your diet reasonably well-balanced? Are your personal relationships fulfilling? Addressing issues in these areas will be important to lessening anxiety and stress.   You mention the lack of social interaction in your environment. For some, finding more time for quiet moments and solitude may be a stress reliever. However, your vivid description of how painful it is to have limited interaction with others suggests that you are more of an extrovert, and draw energy from being with people. It sounds as if you suspect the feelings of loneliness and isolation are a major contributor to the anxiety, if not causing it outright.  So for you, “changing your environment” may mean looking for ways to build in regular contact with people. Even small changes can help: Volunteer to show the new person around. Use break times to call your friends (and mark your calendar so you don’t forget to do it). Take your lunch in the break room and use the opportunity to introduce yourself to others and strike up a friendly conversation. If you are working remotely or your work schedule makes gathering with friends difficult, avoid the temptation to surf the web or collapse in front of the TV at the end of the work day. Going to public places such as a market, museum, park, or gym can dampen feelings of isolation and loneliness, even when you are on your own. Remember during the pandemic, when many people made multiple trips to the grocery store during the week, regardless of whether it was needed, just to be in the presence of others? We are social animals.    2. Manage (don’t ignore) your body’s fight or flight response “Powering through” stress and anxiety or trying to medicate it away isn’t an effective long-term strategy and as you have noticed, it can have a real impact on your physical and mental well-being.       Physical interventions that help your body stand down from the fight or flight response include:  - relaxation (controlled, belly) breathing - stretching and yoga - physical exertion (a workout or simply climbing the stairs at work) - visualizing calming scenes and positive images - progressive muscle relaxation - mindfulness exercises (grounding techniques such as focusing, one sense at a time, on the present)   Detailed, step-by-step instructions on how to perform these techniques are available on the Mayo Clinic website (mayoclinic.org), the National Alliance on Mental Illness site (nami.org), Healthline (healthline.com) and many others. Try them and notice if they lessen your GI symptoms - and improve your mindset!   3. Challenge your thoughts A situation or even a thought may trigger anxiety, which can lead to an escalation of anxious thoughts and feelings. Observe your thoughts over several days. (A digital text or audio journal can be helpful for capturing them.) Look for patterns that may help you understand how the anxiety perpetuates and escalates. Notice the messages you replay in your head throughout the day (“self-talk”). Is it positive or negative? Encouraging or discouraging? Growth mindset or fixed mindset? Practice thought-stopping and resilience thinking. Winona State University is an excellent resource for learning more about these techniques (winona.edu/resilience/mindset.asp) and offers free worksheets and guidelines.   4. Express yourself Whether it takes the form of music, drawing, painting, photography, working with clay or even cooking, creative expression can be a wonderful outlet for stress and anxiety. Don’t listen to the little voice that may try to convince you that you “don’t have talent” or that the time invested is not worthwhile. The end result is far less important than the experience.   Thank you again for submitting the question and the thoughtfulness of your approach. I hope these practical tips will spark some ideas for how to reduce your stress and anxiety, both in the short-term and in the long-term. Take care.
(MS, MA, LPC)
Answered on 05/19/2022

I would like to know in what ways I can manage anxiety, I am a day trader and a serial entrepreneur.

I think the biggest thing is to try to stay mindful of the present moment, and have realistic thought patterns. It can be very easy to catastrophize (dwelling in worst-case scenarios), and make possible situations seem definite in our heads. This is especially true when dealing with uncertain financial situations. It's helpful to have realistic thinking patterns by telling yourself, "you don't know that is exactly what is going to happen," or "if that does happen, you will find a way through it because you've always managed to get by in the past.” Encouraging self-talk helps to prevent feeling helpless and hopeless.   Try to focus your thoughts on what is happening now, not what might happen in the future; and try to focus on what you do have control over, versus worrying about what you are powerless over (easier said than done!). For example, let's say you are powerless over the outcome of something. If there is nothing you can do but wait and see how this situation plays out, then logically no good will come from dwelling on those possibilities. You can instead focus your energy on what is in your power. Some thought-stopping techniques to help stop unhelpful thinking patterns are to envision a Stop sign whenever you notice you start to engage in these thought patterns. You can wear a rubber band and lightly snap your wrist when you notice these thoughts patterns too (but be very cautious with this one if you have a history of self-harm behaviors; this could do more harm than good if you start these patterns). You can "delay the worry time" by designating a time for you to worry, and anything outside of that time-frame, you remind yourself now is not the time for these thought patterns. For example, "I will worry about this situation at 7am tomorrow morning before my meeting. Any time before 7am, I will shift my thoughts to something else." This might be more realistic if you do, indeed, need to worry about something (sometimes anxiety is helpful because it motivates us to change things), but are just struggling with constantly worrying about it.    Any kind of mindfulness/meditation technique can be very helpful to combat anxiety, too. If you aren't familiar with mindfulness, there are many, many apps you can download to see what kinds are more helpful to you. Three apps in particular you can download are: Calm, Headspace, and Insight timer. Youtube also has tons of free videos to watch if you just type in meditation. Just as a side note, many people tell me they can't shut their brains off, and meditation is “too hard." My counter to that is, it's not really about shutting your thoughts off. It's more of paying attention to your thoughts nonjudgmentally, shifting them back to focusing on the physical sensations within your body, etc. (every meditation is a little different. Some focus on breathing, body sensations, counting, mantras, etc., etc.) Let’s say you really struggled to complete the exercise because your brain was all over the place today, even just paying attention to struggle will be helpful to calm you down. Essentially, you are just trying to get out of the endless stream of thoughts, and get into the present moment. When you do that, your body will naturally slow down more.    Exercise is good to combat anxiety because you can get out anxious energy during the workout, and your body will release natural, feel good endorphins when you’re done. Pay attention to your drinking and eating habits. Caffeine and other stimulants typically make anxiety worse. Smoking cigarettes, while it may temporarily relieve anxiety, actually makes anxiety worse in the long run. Alcohol, as well, typically makes anxiety worse once you stop drinking. Having good sleep is also crucial for mental health. Having overall health and wellness is very beneficial and correlated to good mental health.   I’m not exactly sure what you mean about how it is difficult to manage personalities of trading. I would need to hear more to give you more specific feedback on that. I hope any of this was helpful!
(MS, LADC, LCPC)
Answered on 05/17/2022

48 and am lost and have no drive or don't know where to even start I kinda just gave up been so low

Lostone, I appreciate you. I feel like though I am 36, I feel this question deeply. One thing to consider when we feel lost is identifying what that means and then going from there.  Ask yourself, "lost," why is this the interpretation of what I am feeling? Think about it, you could feel or identify feeling anything, but it's lost that you notice. Are you comparing yourself to others around you that are either less lost than you, or do they all know the way, and you don't? If you think others are on track, how did they do that? How are all the other people on track and you aren't? If this is the belief that our mind is telling us, then let's look at that and what that thought is really telling us. Apparently, the entire world knows what they are doing, and we don't.  Now, after we notice that we have identified something our mind conceived from a feeling in our body, we can begin either accepting this feeling in our life or changing it. There are really only two ways to do anything, alter or change after all. So if we accept, then work on what interferes with what you are struggling to accept in life. If we do not accept what we think about our situation or judgment on our circumstances, we can start using many techniques to change. There are ways to manage one's feeling of "lostness," which is to get a new job, a new home, or a new spouse; we can make resolutions and see how that all works out.  Now, when we spend our entire life trying to deny or alter what our mind notices, we start to notice that our mind thinks things all the time, and we can't stop them all. So the idea that you are lost might be turned into the grass is greener on the other side or the belief that things will get better when... In all fairness, those are all interfering thoughts from you being content right now.  What if you aren't lost, but you believe the thought that you are lost and that you should be somewhere else? What if it isn't true, and yet you've been held captive by this belief your entire life? What if you notice the thought that you are lost and distance from it as just a thought?  I am proposing that there is no problem with thinking one is "lost" but that it is that you believe you are lost, if anything. You aren't lost, you are where you are supposed to be, but the real problem is that you believe your mind when it tells you you are lost.  Think about it. 
(LCPC)
Answered on 05/14/2022

How do I beat panic attacks naturally

Hi Kitty, I'm sorry you're having such a rough experience with your new job. Panic attacks are actually pretty common. One positive here is that, based on your message, they seem to be situational. This makes them much easier to address than if they were occurring randomly. The key though is to determine what may be triggering them. There's certainly not enough information in your message to determine what key issues are present here. I'll guess and say that maybe there is some trauma history behind the panic attacks, or maybe they're occurring because of anxiety associated with performing the job duties competently. While I can't give targeted recommendations based on your message, here are some general recommendations: The best natural remedy for panic attacks (when they're occurring or about to occur) is breathing. When you have a panic attack your blood pressure and your heart rate become elevated. Through breathing in and out with long breaths (it's recommended that you breathe out for two seconds longer than you breathe in, so for example, five seconds in and seven seconds out), you can increase the oxygen that goes to your brain, reducing your blood pressure and heart rate. You may notice a bit of lightheadedness, and you'll have to find what works for you. While it may not be feasible during a flight, paced breathing is another great technique. With this you will need to watch a clock. There are other great coping skills, and if they're not that effective, consider using more than one at once (such as counting backwards while doing deep breathing, or muscle relaxation while counting backwards). Grounding techniques may be very effective if you're having intrusive thoughts. There are numerous grounding techniques, but they can include counting the tiles on a wall, noticing the corners of the room (or plane), paying attention to how it feels when your feet touch the ground, looking for everything of a certain color in the room (or plane), etc. The purpose is to orient yourself with the present. Dealing with the underlying issues, whatever they are, is key. If trauma is the cause, there are excellent treatments for trauma, and I highly recommend EMDR treatment. CBT treatment can also be effective with trauma, and it can help with other causes of anxiety. I highly recommend you give therapy a try.  Take a look at your lifestyle and whether there are certain behaviors that may be contributing. For example, not getting enough sleep could increase your risk of having panic attacks. Consuming caffeine could do the same. You may find it helpful to exercise and to talk about your anxious thoughts on a regular basis as preventative measures.] Challenging thoughts that cause you to feel anxious can help. I don't know what those thoughts are, but if you can identify them (therapy can help with that), you can use counter thoughts and positive self-talk statements to change the way you think. When you change the way you think, you change the way you feel and the way you behave.    These are just a few ideas, and again, without more information it's hard to know exactly what's going on. I would be happy to work with you, and whether you choose to receive therapy on BetterHelp or elsewhere, I do encourage you to give mental health treatment a try. Take care, Nick 
(MRC, LPCC-S, LICDC)
Answered on 05/11/2022

Need coping mechanism for anxiety and depression.

Hello, I am so sorry you were baited into a job opportunity that ended up not being so great. It sounds like this work environment is toxic. Usually, before I recommend someone leaving a job, I like to see if there is a possibility of setting boundaries at work, and if so, how much stress that would alleviate. However, noticing unethical behavior and being unsupported sounds like it may be time to start looking elsewhere. So, next I wanted to validate that it is absolutely okay to do what is in your best interest and if that is to find employment else where then so be it!  So, if this is the case, then let's talk about tips on other opportunities: What are your life values? And how can your career support this? Going into an interview is the perfect time to already set those boundaries (by stating your values and your boundaries from the get go) and also this is an opportunity for you to interview them and see if the job is a right fit for you. Now, I know in this case you were "catfished" it seems, so that is unfair. Let's call this experience the exception to the case. You can also professionally explain your recent experience to your new prospect and use that as a point of reference for checking in with whoever is interviewing you to make sure this is a healthy environment, cares about its employees, respectful of boundaries, time off, and ethics.  All of that being said, I want you to know it is okay if this opportunity wasn't what you expected. It is okay to grieve the loss of what you expected. And, furthermore, it is okay to know and trust that a perfect opportunity for you is out there, one that will fit your needs and desires and one that is a healthy environment to work in!  I am also sorry to hear that you are coping with the loss of several family members in your life to cancer. This can be so hard and I hope you take the time or have had the time to properly grieve. If you feel you are having PTSD from this experience or having a hard time coping, I recommend talking to a counselor! It is a wonderful experience to have space that is held specifically for you to process your emotions, grief, anger, and whatever else you may be feeling.  I am happy to hear "life is good!" I hope you find a healthy work situation, as work takes up a big chunk of our life and you deserve the opportunity of your dreams! And I hope you find healthy ways to cope with the grief of losing loved ones. BetterHelp is a wonderful platform for support quickly if you need it! Best of luck.
(MA, LCPC)
Answered on 05/03/2022

How do I stop overthinking?

Dear NG,   Thank you for your message and sharing.   I understand how difficult it is to try stopping your thoughts. I could imagine how hard you have been trying and how frustrating to feel that nothing is working.    We can't stop our thoughts, but the more we practice being mindful of the present, the better we can catch ourselves with our thoughts and develop an alternative response to them, and learn to let go.   During moments like this I remind myself the teachings regarding worries, it is consisted with a 2 part questions:   1. Is this problem within my control? If so, then this problem will be solved given time and the right intervention. 2. Would worrying about it make any difference? If not, then is it worth it to sacrifice our time and mental health worrying over something that (1. can't be solved anyway / 2. will be solved anyway)?   This is definitely easier said than done, therefore as a fellow human being, I am working with you to pay attention to what is good, what is kind rather than our worries.   Obsessive or consuming thoughts can make living miserable when you are plagued by them, but this very situation can become the invitation to transcend mind and be free of suffering forever.   Can you stop obsessive thoughts? - If you could, it would be great, but the truth is that it's slightly more complicated than just suppressing your thoughts which at-most you can do for a few seconds. Plus suppressing thoughts is even worse than enduring thoughts. It builds up a lot of negative energy inside.   So how to stop these stops thoughts? The secret to stopping these thoughts is to detach from the mind because You cannot fight mind with the mind. Let's look at this in more detail.   What Causes Obsessive Thoughts?   If you generated the thoughts, you could've controlled them too.   The truth is that you don't generate thoughts, the mind does. And the mind is on auto-mode most of the time.   You can see this for yourself; can you predict what you will think 30 seconds from now? If you can't how can you assume that you are generating the thoughts?   If you believe that you are your mind, that's a false notion again.   If you are your mind then how can you observe the thoughts? So you must be separate from the mind to see what the mind is doing.   The mind generates thoughts, which are mostly just energy forms. These thoughts pass through like clouds. We identify with some of these thoughts and obsess over them.   So in truth, all thoughts are just neutral energy forms; it's your interest or association with the thoughts that makes them obsessive. If you can understand this truth, you have taken the first step towards getting rid of obsessive thoughts.   How to Stop Obsessive Negative Thoughts?   If you are asking this question, ask yourself another question - "is this question not another thought? It's a thought about killing thoughts".   All your attempts at suppressing and stopping thoughts fail because you are using the mind to stop the mind. The police man and thief are both the mind; so how can the police man catch the thief?   So you cannot kill the mind by force. The mind dies its own death by the poison of disassociation.   What gives power to a thought? - Your interest. If you have no interest in a particular thought then it loses its hold over you.   You can try this out now. Let the thoughts flow through your mind but don't take interest in them. Just stay as a bystander or a watcher and let the thoughts float.   Initially you might have a hard time watching thoughts because of your inherent habit of associating with each thought that arises.   It helps to know that you are not your thoughts, that thoughts are just energy forms created in the mind. Why does the mind create thoughts? No one knows - it's just something it does, why bother. Do you ever ask why does the heart beat?   With a little practice you will get really good at watching thoughts and not involving yourself with them.   You will stop giving power to thoughts by not giving them your interest. Thoughts die immediately when they are deprived of this fuel of interest. If you don't associate with the thought or give power to the thought, it will wither away quickly.   What Are Thoughts?   Past events get stored as memories. Your mind conditioning and beliefs are also stored as memories. All this is unconscious storage; the mind does all this in auto mode.   Perceptions and interpretations are created in the mind based on its past "external" conditioning and also its natural conditioning (genetics). These interpretations, perceptions and judgments come up as thoughts in the mind, and they can be positive or negative depending on the mind's conditioning.   Thoughts are generated based on the past incidents/memories, future projections and interpretations on the present life situation. It's like a computer trying to predict or conjure up projection based on the data it has collected so far.   When thoughts are negative in nature (thoughts of worry, anxiety, stress, lack, resentment, guilt etc.) they produce resistance to the movement of your life, and this resistance is felt as suffering. Negative thoughts will always stand in resistance to the movement of your life, like blocks of stone in the midst of a swift current of water.   Life is a stream of pure positive energy and hence any negative thought will stand in opposition to it, causing friction which is felt as suffering in the body.   The thoughts in your mind gain power from your attention and interest. Your attention is the fuel for your mind. So when you give attention to consuming thoughts in the mind, you are unconsciously fueling it and thus attracting more momentum for these negative thoughts.   The momentum of negative thoughts in your mind will slow down, and ebb away, automatically when you stop feeding your attention to it. Stay as an open space of awareness without focusing your attention on the negative thoughts of the mind, and soon they will lose their momentum.   You can focus on the positive thoughts generated in the mind, and thus develop a positive momentum in your mind. Every time your mind produces some positive thoughts, e.g thoughts of love, joy, excitement, abundance, beauty, appreciation, passion, peace etc, focus on it, milk it, and give attention to it.   This will cause your mind to attract more positive thoughts and thus build a positive momentum.   Whenever the mind thinks negatively, don't give it attention or interest, this will cause the ebbing away of the momentum of negative thinking. It's really that simple. Once you understand the mechanics of how thoughts gain momentum in the mind, you will be in total control of your state of being.   The Practice of Watching the Mind   All you need to do to get rid of obsessive thoughts is to watch the mind without getting involved.   You will get really good at this with just a little practice. This practice, or "sadhana" as called in Hindu scriptures, is the root of awakening from the illusion of mind.   Without trying to understand this practice just implement it. The more you try to understand the more mind gets involved. Just watch the mind and you will soon see that you are not the mind at all.   That the mind is like a machine in your head that generates thoughts based on your attention/interest. Be free of your mind by depriving it of your interest. This is the only direct path of becoming free of the mind.   Please let me know if this is helpful, looking forward to talking with you more :) Jono
(MSW, LICSW, LMHC)
Answered on 09/29/2021

How to break the lack of motivation and start doing

One of the most common defense mechanisms that people have is the defense mechanism of avoidance. On the surface, avoidnace can seem like lack of motivation, lack of interest, or laziness. The way that we percive this avoidance can also have a huge impact on the self talk and perception that we have of ourselves. If we view a situation such as this with the label and mindframe of "I am lazy, I am unmotivated, I am inattentive" that can contribute to that negative self talk that is very common. It can be helpful when dealing with avoidance to name it to tame it, meaning that you name the fact that you are experiening avoidance in order to shift your thinking about the situation. Resonating with the feeling of "I am finding it challening to work on this right now due to my pattern of avoidance" I way less charged than the though of "I am too lazy/imattentive/unmotvated to get anything acomplished. I invite you to relfect on what may be coming up for you in regard to why you may find it psycholoigcally safer to avoid than to dive in. Perhaps there is a fear, either conciously or subconciously, of failing at the said task that you are working on. In a way, avoiding a task can make it easier to justify to ourselfs any fears that we have of what may happen. This can lead to a self fulfilling prochacy as well. I am afraid that this project will not be as sucessful as I hope it will -> That anxiety leads me to my coping skill of avoidance -> I put off working on a project due to that fear -> when I face deadlines I rush to complete work -> the quality of the work I produce is not up to my own standards due to rushing through that work -> I provided to myself that this project was not what I expceted it to be. Finally, I invite you to challenge any negative thoughts/assumptions related to that project. When you fund yourself thinking in those negative ways, talk yourself through some thought exercises to see if that thought is rational, is there evidence for that thought, are you making an assumption about that though, what are other possible outcomes, and what is likely to happen. This can also alieviate some of the stress/anxiety related to tackling projects and facing that avoidance.
Answered on 01/21/2021