A side effect

A Side Effect

A few months ago I met with a chap who opened up to me and told me he had suffered from anxiety for a very long time. I sat and listened to his life’s story and the roadblocks that cropped up from being struck with this almost always on, mental health condition. His story is not uncommon although the circumstances that impacted his life’s journey are unique to his experience, there are so many others out there who can relate to the common symptoms it produces. As far as I’m concerned, this commonality is a strength. I feel this way because it means that this chap and others, like you, aren’t alone.

Prevalence of mood and anxiety disorders  (Canada; Stats Canada, 2014).

For one reason or another, I started to think about anxiety and it’s origins. Maybe there was something within the content of his story that ignited my thinking on the matter. Regardless of the source, I can’t help but wonder how many people are suffering from an anxiety disorder as a secondary function of another mental illness, a side effect if you will.
Many of us can identify when we are anxious because we all experience it from time to time. It is a natural reaction to danger and or potential danger. Without anxiety and fear, we would end up being dinner to the nearest predator. In other words, our anxiety is triggered when we feel threatened; this preditor being the reason our anxiety was activated.
So, what are the causal factors that produce constant angst within those with anxiety disorders? Well, Using me as an example, Post-traumatic stress disorder can cause me to be in a near-constant state of hypervigilance. Because of my fire service background, I am always thinking of potential emergencies that may arise and thus thrusting me into helper mode.
As one might well imagine, this causes lots of anxiety when I step out into the world. My fire service years lead me down the road to PTSD and the fear of more potential death and destruction causes the fight, flight or freeze reaction, then BOOM! the anxiety builds. Therefore, it makes sense that my angst is produced by the PTSD
It’s worth exploring the source of your own anxiety, sometimes there is an underlying cause that is producing feelings of fear for you. Once you know what your triggers are, you can work to minimize its effects on your life. For more on what causes anxiety go here




if you are suffering from PTSD or another mental illness, please reach out. I thank you for your service and you are still worthy and mean something. I believe in you!

If you are struggling please go here: Crisis Services Canada

Want help fund my book? donate GOFundMe – The Road To Mental Wellness – The book.
 
Trauma Specialist, Dr. Jeffery Hosick: jeffreyhosick.com
 

You may also enjoy: Getting Through Tough Times

Contact me on my Facebook page: facebook.com/TRTMW

Post-Traumatic Stress Tested In Real-Time

In three days it will be exactly one year since I was forced off of work due to mental illness. If you take the time to read through my blog site, you will undoubtedly start to see how long and difficult The Road To Mental Wellness can be. I hope that you can also see that despite the long and arduous battle, it is, without question worth the struggle to keep moving forward.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
You know, PTSD is a hell of a thing, the nightmares replaying the most horrific scenes in my head while I attempt to sleep can write off the rest of the night and even the days to follow. Fear of leaving my home, my mental made prison can really keep me in a perpetual loop of avoidance. I see potential emergencies lurking around every corner.

So, after all this time making myself scarce, sometimes for a week or two at a time,  only braving the world to see the people I am closest to or to sit down a discuss mental illness with other suffers, I decided to volunteer my time to help a political candidate in their bid for office in the federal election. 

I decided this because I need to start to gauge my tolerance in what is essentially a work environment, I felt honoured to be asked to help. and I thought, “What a pressure-free way of testing the waters”. This prospect excited me because all I want to is move on with my life and get to a point where I can manage well enough to walk among the working world regularly. 
Sadly, this social integration experiment is not going as well as I had hoped. Ever since I’ve started,  my startle response is at a constant high and I’m overwhelmed by the exposure to others bustling about. Overly loud vehicles rumbling by, just outside the office door, tear my already dwindled concentration away from what I am doing and my most triggering thing of all, sirens, lots of sirens. There is so much constant stimulation that I tire so quickly.

How to reduce stress in the workplace

At the end of most days, I am left in such a state of hypervigilance that I remain awake most of the night; this only compounds everything I have mentioned above when the next day rolls around.

My saving grace? The fact that I am a volunteer, I can do as little or as much as I can tolerate, I take full advantage of that flexibility. But, we all know that the working work demands one to be on all of the time, something that I simply cannot do. Testing out my PTSD symptoms in this voluntary environment has taught me that.

I will get there though, I will persevere and I will win the day… You can too, just keep working towards a solution that works so you can be productive and feel like your winning your mental disorder war.

if you are suffering from PTSD or another mental illness, please reach out. I thank you for your service and you are still worthy and mean something. I believe in you!


If you are struggling please go here: Crisis Services Canada


Want help fund my book? donate GOFundMe – The Road To Mental Wellness – The book.

Trauma Specialist, Dr. Jeffery Hosick: jeffreyhosick.com

You may also enjoy: The Mental Health Work Injury Called PTSD

Contact me on my Facebook page: facebook.com/TRTMW