It’s quite possible that this reminder is for myself mostly, but I also think it’s something we need to talk about a little bit.
There are times when feeling anxious, is normal. There are things in life that make us feel anxious, and we can, and should, just allow ourselves to feel anxious about them. We should not try and fix that, or spend an inordinate amount of time creating more anxiety trying to figure out why we feel anxious about something, when being anxious is the appropriate response.
Recently, I started a new job. This new job involves taking a bit of a chance, jumping into something of an unknown situation. It involved leaving a job I was pretty comfortable in, but also offered a lot of opportunity.
In truth, this could be a great change, or I could be making a terrible mistake.
That creates some anxiety.
The timing of the interview process, coming right on the heels of losing my mother, forced me to be “at my best”, instead of truly grieving at first.
That created some anxiety.
Feeling anxious, and wondering if maybe something was wrong, if it was a sign of my depression coming back, not sleeping, letting my mind race on and on about all the ways this could go wrong.
That created anxiety too, but it wasn’t necessary anxiety. The fact that the job situation, and my mom’s passing was creating anxiety for me was normal. It was not a sign of bad things to come. Allowing myself to dwell on that in unhealthy ways, and reaching almost panic level, was on me.
So, what should I have done instead? For me, it’s a question of focus, and confidence. Rather than focusing on all the ways this could go badly for me, I need to remind myself that even if it doesn’t work out well, I’ll be fine. It’s a job. If it goes badly, I’ll go find another job. That’s what confidence looks like, by the way. Because I can’t really control a whole lot about a job situation, a relationship, or just about anything that involves other people and their free will to act, confidence isn’t so much knowing that no matter what it’ll be fine. Confidence is knowing that even if it doesn’t go well, I will survive that and move forward.
Truthfully, the thing I should have reminded myself instead of worrying about all the ways this could go poorly, is that I survived childhood sexual and physical abuse. This is nothing compared to that. I will survive it too.