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Balancing mental health and work

SystemSystem Posts: 8,627 Staff Team
Having a job has always provoked anxiety in me because of my fear of doing things wrong and fear of not being able to keep my issues away.

1)How you know you were ready for work.

2) How/if you have managed a job whilst having mental health problems of your own.

3)What you found helpful.


  • AidanAidan Clever idiot Posts: 2,620 Boards Champion
    Since my work experience, I'm not sure I could ever work again. I can't, and I don't want to. I wasn't ready for it, and I still aren't. I don't know what else I need to be ready, I just feel like I'm completely unprepared.

    The hours, the repetition, the people, the stress; that's bad enough when you have perfect mental health, but it's perpetual hell when you don't. I can honestly say it only made my depression and anxiety worse, and you would have to offer me a lot more now than you'd have had to then to get me to get a job.

    I pretended to be sick and stayed at home for two days, that helped. That's about it really. I wasn't getting paid anyway, I didn't care.

    Sorry I haven't been much help, I need the same questions answering as you. And people need to do more to:
    A) treat and diagnose mental health problems (mine were undiagnosed at the time)
    B) make work tolerable for people with mental health problems (shorter hours, more paid sick leave, not having to work with people, working from home, later start times, routine and guaranteed shifts, no over-time etc.)

    It'll probably never happen though, not in the competitive society today where the inability to cram the most work into the least amount of time gets you fired, and admitting mental health problems stops you getting hired.
    "Do, or do not, there is no try" <(•.•)>              
  • ShaunieShaunie I’m alive but I’m dead England 🏠Posts: 11,253 An Original Mixlorian
    I'm not sure how much help i can be so sorry

    I supoose it depends on the job and the memtal illness youre suffering with now .Are you asking because you have a job now and want to know if you're actually fit enough for it, or looking for a job?

    The first Job, didn't last 2 week's. Because when there was so many people, I would have to leave the shop floor because i would start crying. So they was extremely supportive and understanding when i wanted to leave.

    The Job I have now, is the most busiest retail shop. And that has only happened once. And 10 times as busier. And the only things I knew i could cope with having a job now was.
    -I was on better medication and stoped having depressionalision experiences.
    -Stoped being so anxious and scared everywhere else.
    -Things in my life are a lot less stressful, so the extra stress isnt to much for me now
    -I am more able to get myself out of bed in the mornings.
    -i been taught coping mechanism to when i feel stressed/anxious outside
    -My eating was better, so I had more energy.
    -i realised I needed money and if i got upset or anxious at work, I could go do some retail therapy to make it all better. Because that is the best therapy
    -it was a better pay so I was more motivated

    What some people find helpful is telling your manager/supervisor you suffer with mental illnesses and they may support you. Cause they could start to notic things. I never told them but they know now because i was of sick for so long. And it's sort of helpful.

    Basically think about if it's to much stress for you right now, if youre in the right mind set, like concentrating without you mind getting stop by things like negative thoughts, if you have the motivation to even get out of bed and go, if you are anxious outside atm.

    Do you think any of what i said may be something that may make your mental illness worse or something that may stop you from doing the work?
    𝐘𝐨𝐮 𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞 𝐭𝐨 𝐬𝐭𝐨𝐩 𝐝𝐨𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐦𝐚𝐤𝐞 𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐥𝐢𝐤𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮, 𝐚𝐬 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐠𝐨 𝐭𝐡𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐠𝐡 𝐥𝐢𝐟𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐞𝐧𝐜𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐰𝐡𝐨 𝐝𝐨𝐧’𝐭 𝐥𝐢𝐤𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮. 𝐁𝐮𝐭 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐬𝐭𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐥𝐢𝐤𝐞𝐚𝐛𝐥𝐞 𝐭𝐨 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐰𝐡𝐨 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐫𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐲𝐨𝐮. 𝐒𝐨 𝐛𝐞 𝐮𝐧𝐚𝐩𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐞𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫𝐬𝐞𝐥𝐟 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐫𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐬𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐤 𝐚𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐝. 💕💕
  • FeatheredDreamsFeatheredDreams Miniposter Posts: 91 The answer to life, the universe, and everything
    TBH i work in an incredibly specific job so i'm not sure how generalisable my experiences are but-

    1)How you know you were ready for work.
    I tend to act on impulse whenever things arise because i know i won't do them otherwise so i volunteered for this work as soon it came up/shot, but in all seriousness at the time (hah) i saw myself ready for work because i could manage my anxiety (mostly) and the depression wasn't so bad that i was harming. So i guess one could say i was managing my conditions at that point?

    2) How/if you have managed a job whilst having mental health problems of your own.
    When things got bad (more like, while things are bad in the present tense) i've become unable to work fully- my job is teaching in high schools largely (charity i work for offers bespoke education on drugs to high schools) and i...can't do that very well in my current state of despising myself and being totally controlled by my obsessions. However, there's also 'behind-the-scenes' work i do instead of the public speaking (i take part in research process, training people to do the speaking in schools etc - anything that isn't the public speaking basically) that I take a greater part in beacuse the other side of my job is too much for me to handle. BUT I can only take the behind the scenes work because of the specific job i have, i'm not sure that's applicable to any entry-level customer service jobs, and isn't anything like most work places i see that aren't on the customer service side either.

    3)What you found helpful.
    Tbh i'm still in the pit of needing support from my superiors since they don't know i'm mentally ill lmao, but they're fine with my taking behind the scenes work and haven't questioned me thus far...so i guess i can't relaly help here? I'd assume that telling your employer helps because then they have to (or should at least) provide some support for you - in being less lenient with you, perhaps offeing a different kind of work depending on the job and such. I think having...a degree of control over your illnesses woudl help a lot too. Like i said i was more able to work when i could manage my issues.
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