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having anxiety attack
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An_249214 posted:
I don't know what to do. I have this horrible, horrible feeling that I have messed up at work. I continuously panic at the thought of having forgotten to do something, or having done something wrong. I have forgotten to send people to my boss, and even though I am told it is ok, I still worry. I forgot to turn in a form (or panic that I turned it in blank), which will not be collected until Monday after I arrive, still I worry. now, I think I may have accidentally messed up a scheduled event- I was supposed to, i thought, go over a certain lesson. I thought I had only done the first one with him. He was prepared for number three, I was prepared for number two. I know on one previous occasion we had accidentally gotten our scheduling mixed up and had not been able to meet at one time. But since we weren't on a fixed timetable, I thought that we were returning to number 2. He was prepared for number 3, and had written nothing at all in number 2. I did ask which we were supposed to do- that I thought it was 2, he said ok. Now, I can't get it out of my head that maybe I was supposed to have skipped that one? I thought my boss had told me that it was a mistake and that one would be rescheduled. But going through my head are a bunch of worries- What if I simply forgot doing number two at a previous time? I couldn't remember having covered that material before. It wasn't as familiar as if I had practiced before. What if we covered the same thing twice? What if I was supposed to skip to the next, and didn't? What if he was told to skip to the next one? Should I have simply called in my boss at the time? But what about appearances? I would have looked like an idiot. All of these things and more are running through my head and I feel sick. I can't relax.
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Patricia Farrell, PhD responded:
It sounds like you could benefit from helping yourself with a written schedule of what is to be done and when and then check things off as you do them. Also, before any meetings, check with your boss to be sure what will be discussed as a double check on the agenda. It's a good thing to do so that neither of you will have a problem when you get to the meeting.

Anxiety can often be managed by using more structure in some things such as scheduling, tasks, etc. Even those little gems you find in those 5-minute management books look at schedules and to-do lists as a way to keep things going smoothly.

Try it and also try our relaxation breathing in our Tips column. You can use it as often as you wish to help yourself calm down.


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