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How Can You Talk About Anxiety, And Getting Help For Anxiety At The Workplace?

May 14, 2022

To start off with Anxiety, Many of us are trained to put up a front at work. It’s an extension of school, college, where formal behavior is considered to be the norm. Water cooler conversations revolve around weekend plans and office gossip. In short, these conversations are mostly surface-level, borderline superficial, and never touch upon deeper subjects, especially if you’re a man. Toxic masculinity views emotional vulnerability as a flaw and expects men to actively ignore personal trauma and be ‘brave’ at the cost of their mental health.

 

Different Shades Of Anxiety

According to a 2020 report, seven out of 10 employees in India experience stress and anxiety at work at least once a week. This has been exacerbated by the pandemic. Think about it, there are so many of us who go about our day-to-day at work with a knot in the stomach.

It’s this sense of low-level anxiety that follows us through the day with no outlet to release it. Add to that the stress of client deadlines, daily or weekly targets, and constant pressure at work. 

Workdays stretch beyond six pm and we wear “being busy” as a badge of honor because everyone else is doing the same thing. But burnout is real and it not only affects us mentally but also physically. Case in point: insomnia is our body telling us that we’ve got unresolved feelings that need to be processed. 

For some of us, anxiety can be so debilitating that we may turn down promotions because it involves public speaking, or avoid office parties to avoid interacting with our colleagues in a public setting.

We use avoidance as a coping mechanism instead of talking to our managers and colleagues about how we’re truly feeling.

 

Ways To Talk About Anxiety At Work

Some of the ways through which you can talk about anxiety at work include:

  • Talk to a trusted coworker about what’s making you feel anxious lately. This may help reduce anticipatory anxiety about the next presentation or team meeting.
  • Bring it up during your catch-up sessions with your manager. Tell them what is flaring up your anxiety and together, come up with an action plan to manage these feelings.

 

  • If office gossip is a trigger for you, avoid being around coworkers who indulge in it and establish healthy boundaries. Eat lunch with a different coworker or use your office breaks to listen to a podcast that makes you feel uplifted and light. 
  • If your manager has assigned too many tasks to you, speak up and tell them that you will not be able to do justice to so much work and that you’d like them to divide the tasks between you and another coworker.

 

Tips On Easing Your Anxiety At Work

There’s help available in various forms to help ease your anxiety at work and outside:

Therapy: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or CBT is a way of understanding and altering thinking patterns that don’t serve us well. It starts with the therapist establishing trust with the patient.

One way of looking at therapy is by thinking of it as an opportunity to share little and big hurts we’ve collected over the years and releasing them in a safe space. In some sense, it’s about getting validation for our feelings while identifying our behavior patterns.

Meditation: Guided meditation is a way to look at the thought loops and loosen their power by focusing on one particular thing – a mantra, your breath, or bodily sensations. It’s a way to bring our focus to the present moment and calm our minds. There are plenty of free and paid apps with guided meditations to help bring peace to the mind.

Alternative Treatment Options: It includes Yoga, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), and Acupressure, among other options. This can act as a complementary treatment option in addition to therapy, all of which can help alleviate anxiety and other mental health struggles.

 

For more information on therapy or how to find a reliable therapist, visit https://heyy.life/

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