Anxious Thoughts

I have an important post about therapy that I want to write but I haven’t had the time amidst all the courses and work that I’m doing. I’m also headed to a Peer Educator’s retreat for the weekend, to learn how to be a good Peer Educator and to support the campus non-academically.

So I’m just going to write this short post about my anxiety that has been wreaking havoc in my life lately. Since I’ve been suicidal and severely depressed, my anxiety hadn’t really showed itself but since school started, anxiety has been taking over my daily mental head space and has been pushing me closer to the edge each day.

I try to combat it by distracting myself with self-care and coping strategies like skateboarding, hanging out with people, studying, and so on. They’ve helped some but S noted that in doing so, I’m not acknowledging that I’m anxious – that I’m not allowing myself to feel the entirety of that feeling, which then makes it come back with a vengeance the next time.

I get what he’s saying but if I allow myself to feel the anxiety, wouldn’t I devolve into a panic attack mess? I don’t know… I haven’t yet really allowed myself to be anxious.

This morning, I woke up with the anxiety that I am just no good if I can’t do 15 credit hours. It just sank in on Thursday that I am doing 15 credit hours. I feel so overwhelmed by the fact that I have 5 classes on top of my 2 jobs, and my responsibility as a Peer Educator.

So I texted my close friend, C, and suggested that maybe I should drop the Server Side Programming for the Web class. We both take that class together and I miss being in the same class as C (he’s way more advanced than I am now despite the fact that we both started together in Spring of 2015). However, at the same time, having 2 already very intense “weed-out” classes is stressful enough without having to add another class that I barely know anything about into the mix. As it is, due to my lack of experience and knowledge, I am having to study HTML and CSS outside of class just to be able to learn the PHP and SQL that I’ll be learning in this class. Every time I think of school latey, I just want to break down and cry.

I feel thoroughly overwhelmed. I know that dropping this class will be good for me – it’ll be a healthy thing to do, right? But at the same time, see the doubt? Anxiety is telling me that I’m so behind. That I’m not going to graduate in time to get a good job because the market will be flooded by the time I finish. That I’m just such a loser for not doing 15 credit hours and beyond. That I was able to do that in previous semesters.

I try to tell Anxiety that I didn’t have extraneous circumstances in the past – I wasn’t divorced, I wasn’t questioning my sexual orientation, I was moved out and living alone, I wasn’t stressed about my finances, and I wasn’t so severely depressed. At the moment, it’s not helping. I know I have to practice the mindfulness technique that S had taught me – that is, to sit down quietly, visualize a river flowing calmly while leaves float by, put my thoughts onto each leaf, and let the leaves and thoughts float by.

Damn, why is it so hard to deal with this?

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2 thoughts on “Anxious Thoughts

  1. It’s hard because we are conditioned by society and other factors to believe we have to be perfect or do things a certain way. I totally appreciate where you are coming from as I graduated a semester late.

    Here’s the thing, it sounds like you’re in an Internet focused or web program focused study – there will be no shortage of work for you! I can PROMISE. As someone who hires specifically for those skills, I don’t ever look at how long it took someone to learn them. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I looked at the years on someone’s resume for education. Plus, with your extra curriculars you could easily say you were focused on developing transferable skills as well as academic ones. That’s a star answer right there.

    I look at fit, someone who is self aware (which you have in spades), and I’m generally just grateful they took the time to learn something I struggle with.

    This may or may not help with the anxiety but I thought I would maybe be able to fact check some of those assumptions for you. It feels so huge because you are anxious about it – but I would rather hire someone who is aware of their limitations and takes longer to do something and learn something difficult, and hopefully that can help you.

    Have a good weekend with your peers 🙂

    Like

    1. Yes, perfectionism is definitely something I struggle with. I’m doing so much better with it but it still bugs me. You hit the nail on the head though. I needed the reminder that I’m not competing with anyone but myself.

      My field is Computer Science which I know is a wide field. I realize now that it’s more important to learn things well than it is just to rush through school and finish. I didn’t feel like I learned enough my first time through college when I did linguistics so I hope I don’t repeat the same mistake and regret not studying things in more depth.

      What you said have been helpful for me. Thank you! Being here at the Peer Educator retreat has helped me tremendously too! Also, thank you for your kind words. It’s very encouraging!

      Liked by 1 person

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