July 5, 2021 at 3:56 am #382466
I just wanted to add that it is usually easier to find employment when you are already in a job. Your interview was (is) for a new position and as such there may be some scope to ‘make it your own’. If this position doesn’t become yours, is there a possibility that you could move closer to your parents who seem to want to support you now.
As your girlfriend is in a job that she does not enjoy, perhaps you could talk to her about relocating to be close to you. It seems that the distance is putting an added pressure on the aspect of you finding full time employment.
Is it possible that you could take a class in Qi Gong which strongly focuses on breathing with movement and becomes a form of meditation. If not, certainly bring affirmations into your practice.
Again, I hope this all works out for you.
PeggyJuly 5, 2021 at 12:46 pm #382468
This morning my girlfriend made almost the same point you did in your last paragraph:)
Thank you again for your posts.
RichardJuly 5, 2021 at 12:57 pm #382469
Thank you for your additional post and suggestions. I will have to check and see if there is Qi Gong class I can take. I was listening to a brief talk on box breathing a day or two ago and gave it a try. I listened to a pretty good guided meditation a day or two ago that really focused on the breath. It seemed to provide me some momentarily relief.
I agree, a new job presents the potential to “make it my own”. My last fulltime job was actually a new position. I tried to make it my own with limited success. But…that does not mean a new situation will not be different.
I am trying to really hard to get out of the mindset that my next job has to be my forever job. It might just be a stepping stone to something else. Just because I take a job I do not have to stay in it forever if I do not like it or if a more fulfilling experience presents itself. But…for some reason right now I seem to only be able to envision myself being in my next job forever. It is crazy. I tell my friends and my girlfriend that their current job, or their next job, or the job after that does not have to be their forever job. But for some reason I am struggling with accepting my own advice. My girlfriend actually reminded me of my own advice this morning.
Again, thank you for your posts, supportive words, and suggestions.
RichardJuly 5, 2021 at 1:00 pm #382470
What is crazy to me is I know I have felt like this before, I have gotten through it, and have felt a lot better again. But…when the two-headed monster that is anxiety and depression come roaring back it is like I cannot even imagine ever feeling good again…even though I know I have done it before. It is really weird how the mind and emotions work.
RichardJuly 5, 2021 at 1:43 pm #382471
If you never lived with a woman, or if you did, not for long, I imagine that when your girlfriend moves in with you- you will feel anxious living with her, and that it will take the two of you work, time, and the practice of EAR (Empathy, Assertiveness and Respect) before you can reach a state of mind where living in close proximity to her will significantly reduce your anxiety, and keep it much lower, on an ongoing basis, than it has been before living with her.
“What is crazy to me is I know I have felt like this before, I have gotten through it, and have felt a lot better again. But…when the two-headed monster that is anxiety and depression come roaring back it is like I cannot even imagine ever feeling good again…even though I know I have done it before. It is really weird how the mind and emotions work”- I read something similar from another member today, referring to emotional pain (“the pain feels like it will never end every time”). I felt like this before myself, many times.
What I figured it might be, this “crazy” phenomenon as you referred to it, is that as young children, when we experienced emotional pain, it felt like forever. That’s how a young child views time when in pain: forever, like it will never end and he/she’ll never feel good again. When emotionally hurting as an adult, that early experience gets activated, together with its-forever feeling.
Nature’s purpose for designing it this way, I think, is that when let’s say, a young child is lost and scared and his mother is nowhere to be found, he/ she must feel that his pain will never go away unless he finds his mother immediately, so all his attention, all his focus is on finding her.
anitaJuly 7, 2021 at 1:23 pm #382572
UPDATE: Today has been particularly rough. I had difficulty sleeping last night and today I was scheduled to work all day in an on-call/temp gig I have. The gig was a virtual event where I met with students via Zoom. My heart was racing most of the day and I almost began crying a number of times in front of the people I was conversing with via Zoom. I feel terrified about not knowing what I am going to do for a full-time job. I feel like I have wasted the past 9 years of my life getting a degree only to find myself lost. I would not trade meeting and falling in love with my partner for anything, but it is still very hard not to be filled with regret over pursuing my doctorate and the position of severe uncertainty I find myself in. I feel like just crawling in bed and curling up into a ball.July 7, 2021 at 2:12 pm #382573
Even though today was a particularly rough day, even though you slept poorly and your heart was racing most of the day- you made it through the day, you participated and completed your Zoom virtual event. I understand your regret regarding investing so much in your doctorate and not seeing the rewards yet- you are not alone in this particular kind of regret, lots of people find themselves asking why the invested so much in higher education. I hope you find some comfort in not being alone in this. And maybe, one day, you will find a reward after all, that will make it all worthwhile.
I hope you sleep much better tonight.
anitaJuly 7, 2021 at 2:21 pm #382574
Thank you for your words and support. I completely broke down after my virtual event. Broke down crying on my couch. Now I am trying to take my mind off of things for a little while.
Thank you again for your words and support. They mean a great deal to me.
RichardJuly 7, 2021 at 2:31 pm #382575
You are very welcome. There is nothing wrong or weak about crying on your couch after a work event. You did well today. Thank you for expressing your appreciation and please take good care of yourself. Post anytime.
anitaJuly 8, 2021 at 5:41 am #382642
Can I just say that knowledge is never wasted and there will be a reason why you took your Ph.D. I personally would find it very challenging to be on Zoom with students and having to converse presumably without a script. I recently read some of my poetry out to a small, friendly group but, never having done such a thing before, I was very emotional and it came through in my voice. Not being one to wear my heart on my sleeve (English expression?), sharing something so personal was ground breaking for me. I received some applause for my efforts which was very comforting.
Every step you take is a step closer to your goal, even if you do have to move the goalposts sometimes. I applaud you for your bravery, you kept going even though your heart was racing, and you controlled your emotions until you could release them safely in your own space. You are doing OK.
Please don’t lose heart. An excellent job opportunity will present itself to you soon. Believe it.
PeggyJuly 8, 2021 at 2:10 pm #382662
Thank you for your kind and supportive words. And congratulations on your poetry reading! I am glad you received some applause.
I am trying not to lose heart. I slept better last night (with the help of prescription sleep aid), but I had a bit of a rough morning. My girlfriend is incredible and super supportive, but I know my mental illness is taking a toll on her as well. I could not have dreamed up a more supportive person then her. My condition had us both crying this morning.
I applied for two more jobs this afternoon. One that I am excited about and another not so much. I found another opportunity last night that I plan on applying for by the end of the weekend.
Regarding my job search, I think I am struggling with confidence. Grad school really messed with me self-esteem wise. It is weird because many times and situations I feel like I have unstoppable confidence, but then other times I feel like a frightened kid incapable of anything. One of the reasons I was a grad student for so long was because I did what I wanted to do for my dissertation and did not let my advisor push me around. I went head to head with him in dissertation defense and proposal meetings and stood my ground. I do not know if it is because I have been out of the “fulltime” work world for so long or if it is because I do not know precisely that I want to do next that I feel so fragile right now. I am trying to change my mindset.
Again Peggy, thank you for your kind words and support.
RichardJuly 9, 2021 at 3:09 am #382678
Begin building your self esteem by listing all the good qualities you possess. I’ve seen several of them in your posts. Loving, supportive, caring, empathize, intelligent, loyal and so on. Repeat them over and over to yourself until they are firmly fixed into your psyche. It’s scary going out into the workplace after such a long break but you need to face that fear. Otherwise, you may never make that leap into employment. Logically, you know how capable you are so send love to that frightened little boy and assure him that everything will be fine now. It’s awful being in limbo over what to do but any decision is better than no decision and if there is a job opportunity that you are excited about then let this be your guide. What does it offer that others don’t. Too often we want to make life rational with our thinking processes but our heart is our true brain. Sometimes, putting our hands on our hearts when faced with a dilemma and asking ourselves how we ‘feel’ about each possible solution will guide us to our best option.
I will be away over the weekend. Take care of yourself and that lovely girlfriend of yours.
PeggyJuly 9, 2021 at 12:53 pm #382689
I agree, I need to face the fear of rejoining the fulltime workforce. I keep trying to remind myself that I did not really leave the workforce. I did work 20-30 hours a week while getting my doctorate and my graduate studies alone often felt like a fulltime job. I am trying to listen to my heart and I am trying to have hope.
Thank you again for your kind words.
RichardJuly 11, 2021 at 2:11 pm #382752
UPDATE: Yesterday was a really rough day. Not sure why yesterday was especially bad, but it was. Part of me felt like I was losing it. My heart was racing, I had hot and cold sweats, and could not seem to stop my negative thinking. My girlfriend was incredibly supportive. She called me in my morning and could tell I was struggling. I was able to somewhat calm down. Around 2 pm my time (3 am her time) she called me again and I immediately began crying. She did her best to comfort me. She told me to take a shower and call her after. I did and when we started talking again I broke down crying yet again. I had not ate all day so she asked me to eat. After I did I told her she should get to sleep. We talked again around 7 pm my time. We had a virtual date scheduled. We watched a recorded church service together and I cried profusely for the first 15-20 minutes. I actually felt better after that emotional release. We watched the rest of the service and then talked for about an hour after. She congratulated me on making it through the day. She knew how rough the day was for me.
My dad called me in the evening. He is another big supporter, but he at times says things that make me feel worse. Last night he said he knows I am going through a difficult time. Then he said he knows I am a lot stronger. I know he means well, but that statement made me feel like as if I am not strong right now. Somewhere on TinyBuddha, I do not remember where, I read a quote about how people with mental illness are incredibly strong. The quote made the point that people with mental illness have to be strong just to do things that “normal” people take for granted. I will not deny that over the past couple weeks I have felt incredibly weak at times. I am trying to remind myself that what I am dealing with is real and that it takes strength just to deal with it day in and day out.
Today I got together with a friend of mine. She is going through a very difficult job search as well. We met at a coffee shop. At the beginning of our conversation I felt panicky. My heart was racing and I did not feel comfortable. I immediately told her about yesterday and how much I struggled. We ended up talking for about 3 hours, sharing our struggles and things we are trying to make our own situations better. I thanked her for the conversation and told her it was the first time I felt “normal” in a while.
The weird thing is when I got home I began to feel a bit panicky again. I meditated a couple of sessions before getting together with my friend and did another session when I got home. The meditation seems to provide a temporary reprieve from my depression and anxiety. I have been listening to loving kindness meditations. I might try to meditate again before getting to sleep to see if that helps with my sleep problems.
That is it for this update…Thank you everyone again for listening. It is helpful just to put what I going through out into the world. This site and you all are an invaluable resource.
RichardJuly 11, 2021 at 7:31 pm #382765
I will read your recent update and reply in about 13 hours from now.