Well, after a year of treatment for PTSD, I’m back to work. Today is my second week. How do I feel? Honestly, a range of emotions. And the anxiety is back. Why wouldn’t it be? It’s change. Change is always uncomfortable. No one goes into a room full of new people and says “Hi everyone, let’s make big changes” an expects them to smile. It’s no different with oneself.
I’m in a new role – different routine, thinking about getting to/from work, meeting new people, understanding new systems, navigating a large campus where I work, figuring out when to eat, when to sleep, what to wear, how to park, how to act. Common theme? NEW.
Of course I have anxiety. It’s just hard and admit it to myself. Despite months of dealing with it, embracing it and telling myself to take it easy. Rome isn’t built in a day. Yep! But when you start to get tightly wound, you don’t really notice. And NEW takes energy. So much that I forget to plan. And when I am anxious, oh man do I plan. EVERY.SINGLE.THING.
Feeling in control is a way of coping. It allows me to break things down into manageable chunks so that I have no surprises. However, the trick is to find the delicate balance between planning to avoid anxiety, and creating more anxiety through the energy it takes to plan.
I haven’t found that balance just yet. And when I lay awake filled with panic on the Sunday night before facing the office, tears streaming down my face, it’s hard to remember that I am being irrational and say to myself “Hey Ella, you got this!”
However, I got this. I will take it slow. Exercising, breathing, writing. Remembering to prioritize the work-life balance I’ve been telling all my new staff about (I manage a team).
Here it goes. Let’s see how I get on.