Bipolar Disorder, Healthy Minds Canada, My Real Opinion

Time For A Break

I must make a confession: I am a workaholic. This is great for anyone who employs me, but obviously problematic for me and my health (because my mind never rests). Also problematic because I am a perfectionist when it comes to my work, which means my work must be up to par before my boss sees it. I guess being a perfectionist and a workaholic go hand in hand.

My ability to focus and concentrate fluctuates day to day. Noise and people distract me more than they should. I have questioned the possibility of whether or not I might have ADD (and am going to further explore this with my doctor), as I feel frustrated, sad, and let down by my (perceived) low level of productivity and diminished attention span for the past few years. Adding one more diagnosis to the mix doesn’t bother me, as it would provide me with an answer and, like I always do, I would find new coping strategies.

I have worked consistently since my diagnosis and I haven’t had prolonged absences from work because of my desire to keep working and because I wanted to keep having a regular schedule. Working a “9-5” job means my weekdays are structured and I know (roughly) what to expect 5 days a week. This doesn’t mean it is easy to go to work and “act normal” but it makes waking up during the week less anxiety-provoking because I know what to expect when I get to work.

This particular job does not involve me having to interact with a lot of clients, as the position is really a customized position and I am lucky in that respect, as it means less “faking it”. I only have to be pleasant and say “hi”, “good morning” etc. to co-workers (if they do the same), and sit at my desk and do my work. I am not saying work is easy, because it isn’t when you can’t concentrate and are experiencing a very long depressive episode and every morning and afternoon, there are points where a feeling of overwhelming sadness and pain hit you like a ton of bricks and you want to run out of the office crying or just take your purse and go home.

courage

Working full time is exhausting period, but even more so when you have multiple mental illnesses and want to please everyone, get everything done in one day or set unrealistic deadlines for yourself. I do have tight deadlines to meet and some weeks are harder than others. The past few weeks at work have involved a lot of late evenings and overtime due to these deadlines. I haven’t felt like myself at all and I feel worn-out. It feels like it will never end and the work keeps piling up, but I am looking forward to a well-deserved week off next week of “doing nothing”. I am hoping I will catch up on sleep, relax a little bit and forget about work for a week. Will any of the aforementioned happened? We shall see.

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