Anxiety About Going To Work: 7 Proactive Ways To Help Yourself
Ugh, that constant, unpleasant emotional turmoil… Do not settle with feeling terrified every time you wake up.
Researched, written by Amber & The Team
Updated on July 13, 2023
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I have anxiety about going to work every day and it’s ruining my life.”
If you’re a part of millions of people who have jobs, you might be having anxiety about going to work every day.
It’s an unpleasant emotional turmoil that ruins the A.M. hours for many of us, but as with anything anxiety-related, it doesn’t have to be this way.
This situation can be improved, and you can feel better (even great!) in the morning before work.
In this article, we will analyze this specific kind of anxiety, its manifestations, and ways to help yourself.
What Is Anxiety About Going To Work?
Anxiety about going to work, also known as work-related anxiety or occupational anxiety, is a prevalent emotional condition that affects a wide spectrum of individuals across diverse industries.
Rooted in the modern complexities of the professional realm, this form of anxiety transcends ordinary work stress, manifesting in an overwhelming sense of unease, dread, or apprehension about the prospect of the work environment or responsibilities.
What Triggers Anxiety About Going To Work?
This can be triggered by various factors.
In some instances, it may stem from the fear of underperformance or failure, or it could be linked to toxic work cultures that prioritize relentless competition over collaboration and support.
It may also be associated with challenging interpersonal relationships in the workplace, whether it be with a difficult boss, demanding clients, or unsupportive coworkers.
For some, the mere thought of public speaking, meeting deadlines, or tackling a high-stakes project can fuel this anxiety.
Specific Signs Of Anxiety About Going To Work
The first thing to make this specific type of anxiety better is determining that you actually have it.
You might have anxiety about going to work every day if you:
- Catch yourself thinking about your job again the moment you leave and the night before;
- You find yourself feeling uneasy, scared, irritable, and unsafe every morning before your work;
- You notice yourself being in a bad, depressed mood every morning;
- It’s hard for you to wake up and actually start getting ready before work;
- You literally can’t stand your job, but can’t quit it yet.
Physical Symptoms Of Anxiety About Going To Work
Anxiety about going to work can present with a range of physical symptoms that not only impact an individual’s work performance but also their overall health and well-being.
Here are some of the common physical symptoms that look for.
1. Gastrointestinal Distress
Anxiety often manifests in the form of digestive issues.
These can range from mild symptoms like nausea and upset stomach to more severe ones like diarrhea and even irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
2. Sleep Disruptions
Anxiety can make it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep.
This often results in insomnia or unsatisfying, fitful sleep, leading to fatigue, decreased alertness and productivity during the workday.
3. Heart Palpitations
Just like generalized anxiety, anxiety about going to work can cause an increase in heart rate, leading to palpitations, which are feelings of having a fast-beating or fluttering heart.
In some severe cases, this can even lead to chest pain or feelings of tightness, mimicking symptoms of a heart attack.
4. Muscle Tension
Chronic anxiety about going to work can cause persistent muscle tension leading to headaches, neck pain, and body aches.
This continuous strain can reduce focus and efficiency at work.
5. Shortness of Breath
Feeling breathless or having tightness in your chest is a common physical symptom of anxiety.
In the context of work, this might make it particularly challenging to conduct meetings or presentations, or to engage in brainstorming sessions that require rapid thinking.
6. Excessive Sweating
Anxiety can activate the body’s fight-or-flight response, leading to increased perspiration.
This can become an additional source of discomfort and self-consciousness at work.
7. Tremors and Twitching
Under high-stress situations, the body might respond with involuntary shaking or twitching.
This can be noticeable and potentially embarrassing in a workplace setting, which could further exacerbate the anxiety about going to work.
8. Dizziness and Fainting
In severe cases, anxiety about going to work might lead to feelings of light-headedness, unsteadiness, or even fainting spells.
These physical symptoms can vary greatly from person to person.
It’s important to note that if you or anyone else is experiencing these symptoms, seeking help from a mental health professional can provide effective strategies to manage and reduce both the physical and psychological effects of work-related anxiety.
How To Reduce Anxiety Before Going To Work
First things first – please know that it’s normal to feel like that.
Anxiety is very common, and it’s natural to worry about things that scare us, including our work.
Here are a few things you can do to help yourself feel better.
1. Constantly remind yourself that life is not just work
There is a particular stage in your life when you start to worry too much about whether you will be able to make it in the morning…
If this is happening to you, then it’s essential to start engaging in various stress-relieving techniques in the morning and remind yourself that work is just work – you and your life are not defined by it.
A good morning anti-anxiety routine would help you release any pre-work anxiety (or at least some of it) to get ready for the day easier.
2. Remind yourself that everyone makes errors
Everyone is human.
We make errors during our work.
If you feel anxious about going to the office because you fear that you might make a mistake or get in trouble, then know that everyone makes errors and that it is not something to worry about so much.
Once you let go of the impossible goal of never making mistakes, you can feel easier (almost lighter) just because so much pressure is suddenly relieved.
3. Try to look at the day ahead with a positive mindset
There are many reasons you might be experiencing anxiety about going to work every day.
For example, you might be afraid of facing your boss.
You could be fearful of making mistakes or just might be overly anxious about everything.
Whatever it is, you can change this negative energy into a positive one by choosing to look at the bright side of the situation or the good parts of your day.
Yes, it sounds cliche, but it is crucial to realize that everyone can have a great day ahead and, most of the time, daily problems are easily solved.
4. Try therapy to get over this kind of anxiety for good
Many people are experiencing anxiety, but they don’t know how to deal with it.
If you choose therapy, you can start to get over your anxiety almost immediately and have lasting results that will help you for the rest of your life.
Talk therapy enables you to get rid of your anxiety without pills, so it’s a fitting choice if you’re not very fond of anti-depressants.
5. Learn more about dealing with anxiety in general
Many books are available on dealing with anxiousness more effectively – and they have to become your daily bread (not literally, of course).
A range of strategies, from cognitive-behavioral therapy to mindfulness exercises, can help manage and mitigate anxiety effect.
You can also take a look at our anti-anxiety tips here.
The critical point here is that you can actually learn to manage your anxiety well by building your emotion regulation skills.
Gathering information and getting educated about your anxiety is precisely what you need to do.
6. Join workshops or seminars that deal with workplace anxiety disorder
These workshops can help you reduce stress and show you how other people (just like you) are coping with anxiety about going to work every day.
These workshops are usually held once a month or once a week, and you can learn a lot of tips from people who are also dealing with this problem.
7. Try to reduce your work pressure
Anxious feelings are entirely normal, and there is nothing bad about it, but if there’s anything you can do to lower your work-related stress, you should do it.
Maybe there are ways to make your job easier, faster, and less overwhelming?
If not, then focus on strengthening your mind and resilience.
Learn to rest and reset well so that this anxiety doesn’t consume you so much.
Find your perfect way to relax every day to get rid of these anxious feelings and function well in your daily life.
In general, try to get as much relaxation as possible, and lead a healthy lifestyle with good nutrition and enough exercise.
Anxiety About Going To Work: Conclusion
In conclusion, anxiety about going to work is a complex emotional condition that intertwines the psychological and physiological facets.
It’s an issue that has its roots in the pressures of the modern workplace, and its effects can reverberate through every aspect of a person’s life.
Major psychological signs often include excessive worry, difficulty concentrating, and a pervasive sense of dread or unease about the work environment or responsibilities.
Physically, it can manifest through symptoms such as gastrointestinal distress, heart palpitations, muscle tension, and sleep disruptions.
However, as ominous as it may sound, this form of anxiety is not insurmountable.
These tips should help you lower your anxiety about going to work.
There are many options, and even trying one can be enough.
Do not stew in a bad situation – choose to change something that can be changed for the better.
It can be something in your work routine.
It can be your mindset.
It can be your lifestyle – do not settle for feeling terrified every time you wake up.
You are worth more than that.
Additionally, creating an open dialogue about mental health in the workplace can work wonders in reducing the stigma around such issues and promoting a supportive work culture.
Employers can also contribute significantly by prioritizing work-life balance, promoting clear communication, and providing access to mental health resources.
In the face of regular anxiety about going to work, remember – it’s okay to seek help.
Acknowledging the issue is the first step towards a healthier and more balanced professional life.
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