STRESS & OVERWHELM
You describe yourself as:
If you were in my office right now, you’d probably tell me that the biggest problem in your life is how tired, overwhelmed, and stressed you are. You’ve never thought your problems have much to do with anxiety because you don’t think of yourself as an anxious person – just tired. Maybe a little irritable.
You’d probably (literally) check the boxes on my intake questionnaire for trouble sleeping, trouble concentrating, and say you have a hard time making decisions in life – big or small.
Guess what – that tiredness you feel? The overwhelm and stress? It’s probably because you’re working hard, carrying a ton of responsibility, and have big dreams for your life that you’re throwing a TON of effort into achieving – and you’re doing this in your personal AND professional life.
Here’s the thing though – keeping it together isn’t the same as being okay.
The kick-ass qualities that help keep your shit-to-damn-gether are often what people praise and admire you for. The hard work, organization, dedication, and responsibility you live with are your greatest assets…and your biggest pain in the ass liabilities. These qualities often wear you down by:
- pushing you to work really hard now so you can have the peaceful life you want later. Always later.
- endlessly consuming the ideas in self-help books and apps that seem like the fast track to feeling better
- constantly questioning the decisions you make
- comparing yourself to other women whose lives look like yours on the outside…only those women actually seem happy
You might be a little surprised to learn that those types of pressure and unrest are also forms of anxiety. In therapist-speak, we’d probably refer to it as “high functioning” anxiety, meaning the anxiety doesn’t render you a puddle on the floor, but it’s still there. In its most boiled-down form, anxiety is just a felt-sense that something is wrong and no one sees it and no one is coming to help. It feels like something is always unresolved. Missing. Unfinished. Might not get finished. Not safe. Might not be safe. Incomplete. 99 out of 100.
Anxiety is a normal part of life and therapy won’t get rid of it because there’s no such thing as no anxiety. But – that doesn’t mean you have to spend all your energy fighting and managing it.
The bottom line is that feeling overwhelmed is not evidence of personal failure.
Feeling the lesser-known effects of anxiety (exhaustion, stress, overwhelm, trouble concentrating, and/or sleeping) in your life doesn’t mean you’re failing. You’re not tired because you’re not doing enough or because you’re weak, and you’re certainly not tired because you’re slacking. You are tired because you’re working too hard and don’t feel safe taking a break.
In therapy, I can help you do more than “cope” with your exhaustion anxiety, I can help you get acquainted with those hardworking, dedicated responsible parts of yourself and redefine the relationship you have with them. You can learn how to live in harmony with the kick-ass, hardworking parts of you – appreciating them, rather than feeling exhausted by their demands.
I’m here for it.