Dear Coleen: Anxiety issues make me worry about my new job
I recently started a new job as my previous one began to really drag me down and make me feel very isolated and depressed.
I was working for a business that was run really badly. People got away with not doing very much, and I felt things were becoming increasingly tense between me and another team member because I stood up to them.
I now work for a more professional business, which is run a lot better. The thing is, even though I didn’t like my previous job, I got used to the routine and the people. There is a lot more to do in my new role and it involves meeting lots of different people and going out to network. All of a sudden I’m feeling overwhelmed.
I do have an issue with anxiety, which can really affect my confidence. I’m feeling on edge, as if I have a lot to live up to, so I can’t relax.
I wish I didn’t feel like this because it’s an awesome opportunity. I’ve always grafted hard and I am dedicated. I also want to get out there, meet new people and build my contacts.
Do you think it is just nerves from being the newbie? I wish I didn’t get so anxious and paranoid as it really holds me back. I’ve had anxiety for about three years and, before, I coped with it by binge-drinking and hooking up with different guys. I’ve sought
counselling in the past.
How can I be more confident in myself?
I think most people are anxious when they start a new job, even if they don’t suffer from anxiety.
You need to look into learning a few coping mechanisms and calming techniques, which could be something like a meditation app (try Headspace) or a self-help book (I’ve just read The Art of Happiness: A Handbook for Living by the Dalai Lama).
Try to stop over-thinking everything and focus on all the good points. You have a better job and more opportunities, and think about the next day and not the week or the month ahead.
CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) is really effective for anxiety by helping you cope with situations you find challenging in a different way. Speak to your GP who may be able to refer you for group or one-to-one sessions.
It might help you relax at work if you get to know your colleagues better too, so go out if they invite you. Doing positive things outside of work such as a yoga or gym class, will help you release stress and cope better day to day.
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