"I feel like I am losing my mind. I have no control over my life!”
Dear Kool Kanya,
Something peculiar has started happening recently. Picture this: I am sitting at my desk at work, minding my own business, when all of a sudden my mind explodes. I start sweating, my palms feel itchy, my heart starts racing… Basically, I feel extremely overwhelmed without any seeming cause.
I have no idea why this is happening, or how to stop it. I feel so nervous even talking about it, because it seems like I am living the perfect life. I have a job, a roof over my head, a family I can rely on. I feel like I have no right to feel so panicked and overcome. I don’t even talk to my coworkers and friends about it, because I feel like they won’t understand.
These episodes happen on a daily basis, and I am truly exhausted and drained from running to the bathroom to get a grip on my breathing and calm myself down.
What should I do?
Love, Losing My Mind
Dear Losing My Mind,
Kool Kanya totally gets how you’re feeling! We’ve all been in this situation at some time or another.
While we are not experts, we think that you might be struggling due to anxiety. Specifically, workplace anxiety. From your description, it seems as though these episodes only happen at work. Is there a reason this is location-specific? Is something (or someone) at work triggering these anxiety attacks?
Think about it… who are you interacting with before you start feeling the cold sweats and the racing heartbeat? Is there a specific task you are doing just them?
Here’s the thing: obviously, mental health is a difficult thing to bring up, whether with family, friends, or coworkers. We understand that.
But we also know that if these episodes are not dealt with early on, they can snowball into bigger and more painful situations in the future. We worry that this could turn into something much worse.
Our number one suggestion? Find a mental health professional who you are comfortable with. This person will not only understand your problem, but who can give you the tools to cope.
We also believe that it is common to feel as though you don’t have the right to feel this way. But the truth is, just because you have a job or a house doesn’t mean you can’t be anxious. Mental health issues do not choose to affect those who have the ‘right’ to feel them. Kool Kanya is a firm believer in the interconnectedness of mental health and the workplace, and you have done nothing wrong to feel this way.
We promise you—you are neither alone, nor are you ‘losing your mind’. We also promise you that it can get better.
Let’s raise our power together!