Couldn’t Be Anxiety, Could It?

man with anxiety

Jack was up at night again. Work was on his mind and he just couldn’t get rid of it. So he continued working on his project. At 3:00 AM. Again. Jack was exhausted. He didn’t sleep week all week, and it was Thursday. Or maybe Friday. He was starting to get pain in his neck. Again.

Jack wondered if anyone else was up. Probably not. Not like anyone else was 3 weeks behind on the biggest project of their career. With a tyrant of a penny-pinching boss. He wondered if he needed to talk to someone. Not that he was struggling. Just needed to vent. He didn’t have anxiety. He couldn’t. Jack knew what that looked like. His friend Tom had anxiety. Ended up in the hospital with chest pain over it. And this wasn’t that. Couldn’t be. But work just wouldn’t leave Jack’s mind. So here he sat doing work at 3:00 AM when he should be asleep.

So, What Is Anxiety?

We all get anxious at times. And this is normal. In fact, a little anxiety – like stress – can help prevent us from making mistakes. But sometimes anxiety seems to get the better of us. And about different things. For instance:

  • Generally everything
  • Panic Attacks
  • Specific Fears (spiders, heights, elevators, etc.)
  • One’s ability to successfully get through life
  • And more

And then the problems start. What those problems look like can differ. From person to person and even moment to moment.

What It Often Looks Like:

  • Uncontrolled, unproductive apprehension or concern
  • Feeling restless or “keyed up”
  • Easily tired
  • Mind goes blank
  • Muscle tension
  • Difficulty sleeping (up at 3 AM, can’t fall asleep, up throughout the night, difficulty waking up, etc.)

So, What Can Jack Do?

  • Create a to-do list in order of impact
  • Talk to someone to vent
  • Talk to someone to problem solve the situation
  • Look for alternative perspectives
  • Go for a run
  • Do a difficult exercise
  • And More!

Jack was up at 3:00AM. He was thinking about work. He was behind on a project and his boss wan’t helping. Jack thought about what was making him anxious and started writing it down. He realized he was neglecting a critical part of his project that he could wrap up in the morning. He made a note and went back to sleep. The next morning, he went for a long run to clear his mind. He realized his boss was trying to help him with the limited resources his department has. On the way out the door he told Jill, his wife, that he would be staying a little late at work to finish up a key part of his project. And he did. That night he slept well.

Sometimes we need more help than we have available. Talking to an objective, trained professional can help. Our counselors in Ephrata, PA can help you immediate relief from anxiety while addressing its cause.

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