Anxiety · Asperger's · Daily life · Work

Surviving work and life

Last month I got a regular position at the library, and although I was feeling quite nervous about it, I was still quite confident that I would be comfortable working there as I had done casual shifts there for the whole summer. Unfortunately it has been quite difficult for me as I started in my new position just when the university campus was getting extremely busy and new students were moving in. It did not make it easy for me when I had just had my training, and I was bombarded with questions, trying to remember the new things I had just been taught. The first weeks I felt sick in the stomach all the time and had to keep rushing to the toilet before the start of my shifts because my stomach was so upset from the anxiety.

I have been questioning my choice to take this job, and think it would have been so much less stressful if I had continued working as a casual, without set hours. On the other hand, now I have the benefit of getting paid holidays and sick pay, and having a steady income every month. I am trying to tell myself to just hang on, and to remember that I won’t have to stay in this job for long, as I am planning to move closer to London sometime next year.

Forcing myself to work in customer service is something I never imagined myself doing, and while I am proud of myself for doing it, I am also disappointed by how much anxiety it has caused me. I am sure my social skills have improved a lot, and I have overcome many challenges, one of the toughest ones being having to answer the phone (it has been a bad phobia of mine since I was a teenager). However, currently I feel like this is too much for my mental health, and that I need to just accept the fact that a customer facing job is not something I can handle in the long term. I am trying to take one day at a time, and I am not going to feel guilty about taking Diazepam before shifts that I know will be particularly stressful.

Are you on the spectrum and/or suffer from anxiety, and have worked/currently working in a customer service job? I would love to hear your experiences. Should I accept the fact that as an aspie and anxiety sufferer I will always find facing people and interacting with strangers very stressful, and should not push myself too much to work in a field where I have to face these challenges every day?

I was feeling very ill for the past few weeks, and being physically unwell always takes its toll on my mental wellbeing as well. A couple of weeks ago I hit a very low point, and was close to calling the hospital as I was scared of how I was feeling like hurting myself and could not stop crying. I had actually already picked up the phone to do that, but as the phone was ringing I got a message from a person that I really like, and in the end I ended up talking to him instead, which made me feel better and somehow helped me out of that black hole I was falling into. He probably doesn’t know how much that phone call meant for me, and I don’t know if I should even mention that to him as I don’t want to scare him. I just wish he knew how much he means to me. Probably too much.

In the last two weeks I missed my first lectures of this semester, and haven’t had much energy to do any reading yet. I am slowly starting to feel normal again, but I am worried about how coping with work and the weather that’s getting colder and darker is going to drain my energy and affect my studies. I will do my best to keep this blog going, and keep a record of my feelings and mood as it always helps a little bit to write things down and reflect on them.

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