Daily Thoughts of Someone With 'High-Functioning' Anxiety
Living with “high-functioning” anxiety is hard. It feels like you are in the in-between of two separate worlds. You are either to sick or not sick enough to be treated for the disorder. For example, I can force myself to go to work, shower, do chores, etc. but it won’t stop the nausea, puking, migraines and dissociation that go along with it. Everything has to be perfect or it will haunt you completely. Thoughts like “I’m going to be fired,” “I should have done better” or “You are never going to succeed or be good enough” are a daily thing.
However, people would never know. Because the anxiety is so high, you can get a lot done. You master the art of looking relaxed while inside a storm is ragging out. So essentially, when you talk to an employer, doctor or even a therapist, there is a lot of questioning to see if it is even worth getting treated.
People don’t see the storm, they see a hidden face. They see a mask shielding or holding in a shadow of self-doubt. It is exhausting. Your mental, physical, and spiritual life takes a hit. You get so wound up with the things you need to do and extracurriculars that by the time you have some space for yourself, you can’t move.
Some people say this is a gift not a curse but they don’t live inside my head. They only see the outcomes of the anxiety (such as a high test scores, groups or promotions at work) that stem from perfectionism. The only one who can hear those nasty thoughts are you and no one would ever know.
So to my fellow high-functioning folks, keep fighting for your voice. Keep fighting to get more mental health structure in the work place. Keep fighting to keep the voices at bay. Keep fighting to be taken seriously. Keep fighting for help. Keep fighting for your life. Keep fighting to live.
Pexels photo via Jan Krnc