Getting Through a Day Paralyzed by Anxiety and Depression
Living with mental health issues means there will be days where you feel paralyzed by anxiety and depression. Because comorbid depression and anxiety are so common with different mental illnesses, nearly everyone who struggles with mental health will have to get through a day feeling paralyzed by anxiety and depression. I had one today, and man, it was rough. But, the good news is, I got through it.
I'm pretty good at planning my day with anxiety disorder, but today was exceptionally hard. I felt utterly paralyzed, like I couldn't even move. I felt wired and tired. The combination of being wired from anxiety, and tired because I just wanted to crawl into a hole and disappear created an awful push-pull feeling throughout mind and body. I wanted to move, but I couldn't. I didn't want to move, but I had to.
My Day Was Paralyzed by Depression and Anxiety, but I Got Through It
So, how did I do it? It took pretty much everything I had, but I was successful because I achieved two main goals: I didn't beat myself up over it, and I was at least minimally productive. I kept pushing forward despite how I felt.
I have low self-esteem, like almost everyone with depression. One of the things I have to do to keep it at bay is to be productive every day in some fashion. Of course, productivity is a relative thing. I had 10 things on my to-do list today, but I only accomplished two of them (writing this blog post was one). So, my productivity was only 20 percent of what I had planned, but at least I did something. Doing something -- even doing it badly -- is always better than sitting paralyzed and doing nothing.
The other thing I did right was to not attack myself for having a bad day. (We all know that beating yourself up when you already feel bad makes everything so much better, right?)
Everyone has bad days. There will be some days when I'm too overwhelmed to function very well. That's just reality, and accepting that and getting on with life anyway is a big part of me living successfully with anxiety and depression.
Tomorrow is another day, and that means I get to start over. Even though getting through a day paralyzed by anxiety and depression is not a pleasant experience, I'm grateful that I was able to practice my skills. The fact that I got through it without harming myself shows me how far I've come. I'm much stronger and more skillful than I generally give myself credit for, and my guess is that you are, too.
Weber, G. (2015, August 12). Getting Through a Day Paralyzed by Anxiety and Depression, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, February 29 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/treatinganxiety/2015/08/getting-through-a-day-paralyzed-by-anxiety-and-depression
Author: Greg Weber
I know how you feel. Some days I can not even get out of bed, But I lay there and take care of phone calls or paperwork. At least I did something and contributed to my family. You blog was very good and I can so relate. Thank you.
Thanks for stopping by, Kewanna.
Hey I have depression and Anxiety since I was 8 or 13years old.When I was 12years old my Sister got killed.And I did see her dead body,my Mother blame me for it.Mom was in shock about what happened she felt bad about it Later.I was babysitting her and my brothers,I was only 12 years old myself.By the time of my Mother feeling bad about blaming me!.It was to late for me that's when my depression started.So I started having anxiety and depression and having sleeping disorders.So I have been on medication ever since my medication name was Antitipline for a long time.I got pregnant when I was 16years old,I stoped talking Medication for depression
I got back on medication after my second child was born.So I been on medication ever since,now I'm 51years old and my depression has been voice,no medication are working any more.So it has been 6years now and I am doing ECT treatment now I go once a month. I helped me and counseling and working on a having a better Life style.I was told my depression is really bad.I tried to understand what has been happening to me but it is hard
Nobody in my family and friends don't understand why I am doing the ECT Treatments.Why is it that even you guys don't talk about does Treatments? Anette. Please respond some one.
I don't know much about ECT. In fact, I know almost nothing about it, but you can do a search of the HealthyPlace website for that term. There appears to be a lot of information about it:
I wish I could say ECT is a bad thing but I do not think it is. Over years I have had about 60. No, I don’t like forgetting everything but it brought me back from the depths of hell. I would do it again if I ever went back there. Revisit some of your meds. They may work again. Try the new. I had the onset of severe depression after a head injury in an auto accident. I was very sick for several years. I think ECT did more for me than any medication. I am Bipolar II. I have quadriplegia of the brain. Anxiety attacks, panic attacks and migraines that I need to go to the hospital for. I am so sleep deprived it’s a wonder I can remember my name.
I had ECT last fall. thought it helped at first but it really just ruined my memory. I lost a job because I couldn't remember things. Even now my friends will talk about something that happen last summer and I have no recollection of it. Would not recommend it. I'm struggling more now with depression than this time last year. I guess I'm glad I gave it a try though.
I've had a hard time feeling productive lately due to depression and panic attacks. Lately I've started to consider a day productive if I don't have to close my office door so I can sob at my desk.
So I'm 17 years old and dealing with anxiety! Everyday I'm anxious of the Unknown! That's the best way to describe anxiety "fear of the Unknown".... I get so anxious in many situations, then other days I'm fine and it doesn't seem like I'm any different! Mental illnesses are crippling and we can only help ourselves, no body else! It feels like you're trapped, always tired and always saying " I'm not well" and people always complaining that I'm always ill! It's so hard to control yourself sometimes and people like us, can't always have control, but that's what we crave right? I don't always agree that people can just look past it because to us , it's a vicious cycle of feeling ill, tired and then hating ourselves for feeling that way, getting angry and then getting panicky because we can't control our own bodies and mind. But we can all do this! We are all still here! The panic attacks that make you feel like we won't make it... But we will! We always do! I'm just so glad im nt the only one! Reading this is very reassuring! I'm so thankful!
Thank You for writing this. I have been feeling so alone in this. Lately I just feed the kids and get my 5 year old ready for school and walk her to the bus stop...then I just sink into my couch or bed feeling paralyzed and angry and depressed....it is such a vicious cycle. I hate myself almost every moment. I will try to not beat myself up and just try my best to be productive...often the "beating myself up" part really takes more energy and time than anything else....it is so embarrassing to admit this.
I just want to let you all know that the scariest thing about depression is the feeling that you are going mad. I went through this feeling a while ago, and it was terrifying. I wanted to be alone all the time, but being alone was scary too. I was between a rock and a hard place as they say. The worse thing for me was the fact that I couldn't feel comfortable in my own skin. No-where did I feel safe. I felt as though I would never get out of that dark and hellish feeling. However, I did get out and today I am enjoying waking up in the morning. So you see, when you feel afraid that you will never be 'whole' again...remember that it is possible to grab someone's hand when it is offered. Seek out the Professional help you need. Take the first step. I am not afraid...because I know I came back from that dark place. You can do it too. Please get connected to someone who can help you. Maybe the circumstances of your life are just too overwhelming. I am a retired Social Worker...but I needed the help from a Counsellor, to change my circumstances. I wish I had asked for help many years ago. Ring your local Council and find out exactly what help is available. That will be the hardest step...but a step you will not regret when you are walking out in the sunshine again. Look in the front of your telephone book to find out who you can ring...or get a friend to organise it for you.
I send you all my love and I know you can do it...If I can... anyone can.
After multiple meds and Doctors, I finally found a doctor who suggested TMS therapy. I never knew that some depressions can be drug resist. I never heard of this therapy which is treating both my depression and anxiety. It's not cheap but most insurances are now covering it. I'm in the end of 3 weeks and can tell there's a difference already. I'm no longer in the black whole, so to speak. I do see a counselor once a week to help me learn to love myself and work on my self esteem. Just wish I had been told about this therapy before making horrible choices. Good luck to all of you.
When I read this I almost felt like you were in my head... A recent (now ex) boyfriend literally told me I was crazy because I have a fear of opening my mail. It's really hard to explain the feeling of complete paralysis when it comes to what should be everyday normal activities
Thank you for writing this post Greg, and thank you so much to everyone who commented. I can relate to every one of you. I have read many blog posts but never responded to one before. Here goes. I just really want to say thank you for your honesty and sharing. I have been feeling lower and lower each day, and decided to google "feeling paralyzed by depression" and here I am. Since there is no quick fix to coming out of the blackness, at least we can reach out to each other and find comfort in total understanding. I am actually feeling better enough now to type at least! I feel like you, Alexandra. I can't stand how this is a vicious cycle. I am the Queen of beating myself up for my behavior. An old therapist told me that I am a perfectionist. I asked how that could be, considering I am so far from perfect. She said the fact that I never accept myself for the good that I do -- that I only see myself as flawed -- makes me a perfectionist. It is so true that I am never satisfied with myself. She asked me once to list 5 good features about myself. Crickets chirped. I was SO embarrassed to say anything positive about myself. I felt like I would be bragging, plus there was nothing to list anyway. Lol! I felt like a grade schooler on the gym stage during a spelling bee -- that fear of criticism and self-doubt and failure, and the reason why every year I purposefully misspelled the final word asked so I wouldn't qualify to go on stage in the first place! I still can't speak that list comfortably so I have to work on self esteem. I beat myself up for unjustifiably beating myself up! Vicious cycle! Anyway, my goal for tomorrow (well, today since it's 1:30 am now - my horrible sleep schedule) is to not berate myself and to try to keep believing (dreaming?) that I'll make some sort of progress today. I have to get up early to bring my boys to their soccer games so that's the definite push I need. It forces me to shower, too. (God, that feels so pathetic to say.) I lost my job back in November and have lost all interest in looking for a new one. I can't stop, though. Unemployment is running out. Real life is crashing in on me. I've been closing my eyes to it, pushing scary reality off to "later." Checking my bank account and telling myself I'm still doing ok. This is why I have come to rest in the blackness. It is so embarrassing. I can't stand reading all of those "feel good," encouraging quotes posted on Facebook by my friends. They don't apply to me!! I'm waiting for when one will apply to me! One I can confidently agree with! I know "Life is a gift; Don't waste it," but it sure comes easy to waste right now! These inspirational quotes came to mind because the only one I DO like right now is the one accompanying this blog post! "Stop beating yourself up. You are a work in progress, which means you get there a little at a time, not all at once." In the picture, I am the little bunny reaching to get back to earth. "Baby steps." "Fake it 'til you make it." They're not kidding! I am going to stay up now to attempt to get my sleep schedule back to normal, and think about you all, and how we're all fighting this @#%@#% fight together. Somewhere out in the world, I know there is someone else awake feeling like me.
Mary I hope almost a year on you have found some peace. I myself searched for 'Depression and feeling paralysed'. I feel unable to do anything however I don't give myself credit for getting my 2 young boys ready for school, for doing homeworks and for making dinner, for reading them stories every night and for hugging them even though I feel nothing. I've had severe depression & anxiety for over 20 yrs. I had finally found the solution through essential oils however my mum died 8 weeks ago and I'm worse than ever. Back on dreaded meds and unable to feel that I will ever get better. Depression sucks!!!
Mary I would like to be your friend. Your words sound like my thoughts. My Husband doesn't understand. I am a Christian and thankful for the Lord. Sometimes all I can do is reach out and pray and ask God to help or read a psalm when I don't know what to pray. My disability is running out but I have been so paralyzed...I haven't even been able to do my laundry let alone finish my resume and look for a job. The thought of going on interviews and trying to say the right things and convince someone that I am worthy of a job is just so overwhelming to me. I am very skilled and good at what I do, but I also am a perfectionist. If my house isn't clean and organized, I don't get enough sleep or whatever the reason I get very overwhelmed and I tend to shut down. I'm trying to fight it. It just is so silly and yet I can't get past it. I used to be such a go getter and get so much done. I don't know how I did it. I wish I could get that version of me back. Anyways, just wanted you to know that someone out there feels exactly as you were feeling when you wrote this post. I hope you are doing better. It is no fun being isolated, even though we often isolate ourselves. It just makes the issue worse. I recently started taking amino acids as a desperate attempt to change the way I feel. I've tried just about everything. Hopefully it helps. If you'd like, you can reach me firstname.lastname@example.org
God Bless you all that are struggling with this! ?
Wow I can't believe I can even type seeing that this feeling I have had me feeling so stuck I can't breathe without consciously taking a deep breath! I too have God in my life and do not understand how a once vibrant girl who friends called a cheerleader for life can be sitting in the house while there are many things going on around me with family and friends?! I do suffer from a chronic illness and had a dr apt this am....have had severe stomach problems since last night (well all the time but I had to be close to a rest room for this kind) but I can't blame my physical illness because I ha e been much more sick and gone out or had people over and I want nothing to do with any of it! I. Lames the winter at first then I blamed menopause,now I am blaming the heat wave....well today is 78 and gorgeous and I am in my room shaking every time there is a sound like one of kids home or my husband?! This is bad that is why I googled it! Idk if it's cuz it's becoming my norm or what but I HATE IT!! I need to move my feet but NOPE,I am laying here! I want my life back please someone help ?! Any suggestions I'll take em! I already journaled and read psalms I don't know what's up? Ty and I pray ur doing better! God bless Kerry
I noticed that you didn't reply to the messages and replies from other people. How are you today? Did you manage to get through since you wrote that blog? If so, how?
I've lived with depression and anxiety for most of my life, but still managed to have a fairly good life anyway. Was happily married for 13 years, had a successful career and did well in general despite the fact that I've been thinking of death and suicide every day of my life, since 5 years old. I did try once and failed and as a consequence, I've been angry at myself for failing and being a coward and angry at the Universe for not allowing me to go. At 38 years, I've deliberately put my life in danger so many times before and still get out of it alive.
I am sitting in the stairs in my house, paralysed with fear and anxiety... that the great speakers and philosophers keep saying is created by my mind, memory and imagination. Although, for me it is quite real. I've been divorced for 5 years now, lost my job 3 months ago, started a company and business is close to non-existing, and obviously money is running out. I have enough to live off and pay my bond and bills for one more month and then... that's it. If I don't get any business or income soon, I can loose my house and livelihood... which was all I had left. In the divorce, I left everything behind for my husband, because I still love him dearly and didn't want to cause him further hardship. I managed on my own to get back on my feet, to buy my little house, to give me some sense of security... and did well until I lost my job.... in which I was happy but had no life, lived off stress and alcohol and money. So loosibg my job wasn't the worst thing to happen as it was slowly killing me anyway, loosing my security, and everything else I had left is getting to me.
As I mentioned, I've lived with this fear, anxiety and depression all my life and somehow, my work or my husband or my siblings managed to motivate me to get up and get through the day and then to get through the bext day and the next after that... but right now, I have no motivation and no reason to get through the day.... as you mentioned, even taking a shower is an achievement.... I got that done, and brushed my teath and put on some make-up... and don't feel like i've achieved anything and feel as if i'm slipping deeper and deeper into that black hole with tears and metal spikes at the bottom.
Again comes the anger when I realise that the Universe will again today, as with yesterday and the day before, not allow me to just die and be done with it.... which reminds me of what you said when you mentioned that those motivational messages and memes just don't apply to you... They sure don't apply to me either.... because who wants to be grateful for "still being alive" when you feel like this. Who cares if a guy with no arms or legs made a success of his life and is happily married... he surely had financial support, emotional support and the food must have come from somewhere?! With those few things, I can make a huge success of my life... with or without arms.
Stephan Hawking was a major success, but he surely didn't do it alone... practically, left alone without someone to feed him, he would've been dead a long time ago... So, I guess this is what I fear... dying because no one can "see" my disability and therefor no one can help me. Is that it? Talking about this, we only get the answer "get up and do something, try, stop feeling sorry for yourself" so no more talking about it, right?
Well, doing some laundry is something... it won't pay my bond next month, and whatever's going to happen, I can't stop it... I'll just try to survive it... so I'll do some laundry now and maybe some dishes later... and if not... then... well, nothing.
Thank you, for telling your story, and allowing me to tell mine, without judgement (hopefully)
I truly hope you are okay and doing much better by now and hope I will too.
Michelle, you are a realist, an intelligent woman who sees through the fake advice. I identify with you, I gave up a great career on a mad whim, so self-destructive and then couldn't cope with the nasty workplaces, always gettng anxious and stressed then sacked. I started a business which I couldn't motivate myself to market so had years of failure and feeling useless. I now work for minimum wage, even though I am so clever and driven. I can't cope in a corporate environment anymore and haven't the confidence to start a business or the money. There are few positives except I haven't got cancer I hope. All the best to you x
First I'd like to say I totally understand what all of you are going thru, and I love every single one of you. I have anxiety/depression/obsession/compressive disorders thru the roof of the Empire State building!! I have had this since starting with depression at 8yrs old and building throughout the rest of my life. Beginning with a mother who rejected me at birth, leaving me to be handed from one family member to another until I was 4, and then back to her. Whereby she left to care for myself, until my sister would get home from school, until my dad would get home from work. Went from that to a marriage I THOUGHT was going to be a Heaven-made one; walked out of one nightmare into another of the same. But loved this man with all I was made of, and stayed. Had a child, girl, she turned out just like him and his wretched family. Made my life Hell. Loved and cared for her as I did him. Had a still-born son. Was always very sick after that with one major illness after another, usually requiring hospitalization, 11 surgeries thru the years. Were'nt always poor, but did struggle several several times, had to file bankruptcy once. Now, I am 60yrs old, disabled but do not qualify for disability, my husband (who came to finally love me and was my prince) died suddenly 6 months ago. The company he worked 41 yrs for gave me HALF of his pension to live on(because he died at 59, not 60). And left me without medical coverage, including for my meds. One med alone is $753.00 PER MONTH, that's the one that stops my severe and crippling anxiety attacks. Help? I have ABSOLUTELY NO ONE and NO KIND. The ONLY way I was able to get thru getting my Husband buried was because I was 'walking' thru it in such a state of SHOCK that I didn't realize what I was actually doing until 3 months later. NOW.... while I own our home and cars .... I am a quivering ball of human terrified broken-hearted crippled and devastated confused and totally lost mass of flesh that hides under my blankets in my huge Ortho health chair in my living room. I do not know what is going to happen to me.
That's a lot to go through. I'm sorry you've been struggling. Have you checked in to medicaiton assistance programs? Those might offer some help in at least that area. Our Free or Low-Cost Prescription Medication Assistance article is a good place to start. https://www.healthyplace.com/other-info/prescription-assistance-programs/free-or-low-cost…
I am 2 years into depression caused by perfectionism ... I hate how I make my parents worry and feel but I can't tell nobody else to help my ... today I got to the point that I'm paralyzed , I always tried to prevent this since I'm in college... I need to work work work study study study ... and now I'm just exhausted I'm always forcing myself to live ... all I want is to live and function properly.. to study with love and not fear ... I skipped scoial gathering today , I just can't go ... I can't seem to speak just this
I've battled perfectionism, too. I know how difficult it can make life, especially when combined with mental illness. Please consider taking a look at some of our listed mental health numbers and resources: https://www.healthyplace.com/other-info/resources/mental-health-hotline-numbers-and-refer….
Duha, we are really sorry for the late response to this comment. I am new to HealthyPlace and saw your comment. I hope you managed to get through your exams. Negative self-talk can be really debilitating and feel challenging to turn around sometimes. One suggestion I have for you when these thoughts arise is to create a phrase like, "Even though I feel anxious right now, I fully accept myself." Name whatever feeling your experience in the phrase and practice self-acceptance. At the same time, use two or three fingers to gently tap just under your collarbone while repeating the phrase. It might seem like an odd technique, but it helps me to reframe my experience and redirect my focus to something else. Of course, if anxiety is affecting your life in a big way, please look into getting professional help.
Thank you. I'm reading this while paralysed in my bed but you helped me to realise even though I fee this was and I am slightly beating myself up for all those things I'm supposed to be doing today. I have succeeded in doing some writing and I won't beat myself up as like you in my writing. I know tomorrow is another day and I'm getting through today without harming myself too. A massive step forward for me also. Thank you.
I too at home in bed paralyzed. I haven't taken my clothes off from yesterday and I can't force myself into the shower even though it is mid afternoon. I have lost almost everything but I still can't move. I need to deliver paperwork to a nearby town in order to see a free therapist. I have a graduate degree in sciences and engineering but it doesn't help me move or function. I have lost my children, teens, because of the extreme depression and circumstances. My words have been twisted and now despite them loving and caring about me immensely, we can only spend a few hours together and that must be supervised by mother who is a "puck yourself up by your bootstraps" mentality regarding depression. My car is on a repo list and is hiding. My home I rent is overdue with rent payments with an eviction notice given and the date is a mere two days away, yet I'm hopelessly stuck. I have no income, no support system, and have lost over 40 pounds in a few months. I've tried every antidepressant combo and even self admitted myself a few months ago but nothing, absolutely nothing works. I'm not suicidal because I don't want to leave my children, but I am numb. All I can do is read posts hoping someone had it worse and recovered ...even just a bit. This disease is horrific. Please don't ever judge anyone as we all have different struggles, different coping mechanisms and different pasts that affect all of our being. My greatest hope is my children will never experience this, no one should.
This is not a new struggle, but rather a manifestation of a struggle of more than a decade. Lastly, I have never posted on any site though I have begged for help from family and friends. 'm hoping this will be a step in the right direction and maybe strangers can be better equipped to offer advice than those in my almost nonexistent circle. I long for the old me, or even a resemblance of me.
I sincerely hope you find some understanding, support, and help soon. You may want to check out one of the resources we've listed on our "Mental Health Hotline Numbers and Referral Resources" page. Something there may be able to help you in your current circumstances.
I know it’s been a long time since you posted this and I truly hope you are ok. Your post hit me pretty hard because I’ve gone through almost the exact same thing. I was in the same place a year ago. My situation was also a culmination of events from the past several years. So many things had happened and I became paralyzed by it all as well. I got on some meds that helped me to start putting one foot in front of the other. It’s been a hard road of pushing myself each day to do something to get my life together. The best thing for me was getting a job. I needed it so badly that I knew I had to get up and go every day. Mornings are still hard for me and sometimes I don’t know how I’m doing it, but I am. Being busy and being around other people saves me. I’m forced to act like I’m ok, to smile and talk to people. At some point almost every day I realize that I’m no longer forcing myself and I have a reprieve from the darkness. Missing my children is crushing, but I am getting better and taking steps to get them back in my life. Weekends are tough, especially being alone on my days off. I’m having a relapse of that paralyzed feeling today and I looked up “being paralyzed by depression” and found your post. I’m so glad you posted because I thought I was the only one who has gone through this much. “This too shall pass” and “fake it till you make it” sound cheesy but it helps to remember sayings like that because I’ve found that they’re true and so important to remember. Things do get better. Don’t give up on yourself, things can get a lot better. I haven’t had a bad day in a while and maybe today served as a reminder of how far I’ve come.
Money is such a huge stress, especially when we have tried to fit in with work and crap. I know I'm going down yet I can't seem to function at all. It's very scary and overwhelming. I'm 51 now and lost all motivation when I used to try so hard to keep going.
got through the day. not sure I will get through the night
This may sound like a horrible thing to say but it feels like such a relief to see that there are others who are experiencing exactly what I've been experiencing. Sounds cliche but yes when you go through this the intense isolation makes one feel like you are the only person in the world going through it. And selfishly I take comfort in knowing that I am not the only one suffering like this which also gives me hope that I can deal with it. I've been dealing with it for many years on and off. But this bout has been exceptional. Let me say that one of the solutions I believe is to not isolate oneself. I feel better when I'm in the presence of someone not a lot of people that would irritate me like strangers, but one or someone that doesn't completely discussed you or irritate you. Being productive in some way is rewarding. And I just took one ride with lift and made 10 bucks woohoo 10 whole box smdh but the fact that I got in my car and drove makes me feel like less of a complete loser. At 46 even though I lie and tell everyone 36, I feel most times of late like a complete waste of space. I know I'm not but there is this little nagging voice that says yes you are what have you accomplished? You do nothing but be sad complain and be depressed all day you lay on the sofa now that you have one because I was homeless last year you get yourself together and then you put yourself back in a situation to lose it all again. It's a vicious cycle. And I am fighting this demon call depression tooth-and-nail with my full spirit. If there is anyone in the West Georgia area Douglasville who would like to form a small support group with me where we meet for coffee please let me know
Thank you for your comment, Natasha. You're right about how important support and connection is. It is really easy to feel like we're alone if we don't have that. We all have the negative critic that comes out at times and it sounds like you are taking some steps to counter it. You might check out meetup.com to connect with people in your area with similar interests. All the best.
I am currently having a horrible time and I am finding it difficult to move. I try to do a task every hour but I have failed at this today. This paralysing depression has robbed me of so much. I have ended up living in squalor and losing my home because of it and still I lie here struggling to get up and brush my teeth. I am worried I will lose my teeth as well. I already have toothache.
I have just been verbally abused by someone who is a hypocrite who insulted me about the state of the house while she added to the squalor. It makes me so angry. She is such a nasty person and I think this has de-motivated me. I hate being alive but I will try to battle on for the sake of my pets.
You're doing the best you can. Keep it up and don't give up! You can get through this. Don't Let others opinions get you down. They don't matter. Only you getting better matters.
Wow! Melanie! What a splendid idea - to try to do a task per hour! I'm going to immediately apply that in my situation. That's really helpful - thank you very much! And PS - I come from a verbally abusive home and I know it's hard to let it roll off your back. My secret weapon as a kid was to plan every day (from age 11 on, when I first recognized the depravity) plan how I was going to get away from her. It worked! I was able to escape to college at just 16 years old! May I recommend you consider furtively making plans to move somewhere else?
Thank you for making me feel human again.
Logically I know its ok to feel like a failure sometimes but when your at the bottom its harder to spot the sun.
Thank you for being brave enough to show us its ok.
For all of us, Amy. I suspect the "trick" is to compliment yourself for even tiny steps forward.
You guys can talk and talk about it but we all know nothing will change. If it was that easy we would all be healed. Living with the pain and accepting it is the only way, until we take our last breath in life. Hang in there folks.
Thank you for writing this article. I am 53 and in the midst of the hormone roller coaster called "perimenopause." It's kicking my you-know-what! Last week I was as focused, competent and productive as I was at 30. For the last three days, I have been inert, depressed, indecisive and today, paralyzed. I try to flog myself mentally - to no avail. I eat sugar, drink caffeine, take "mental energy" herbs...all to no avail. I know that this will simmer down in a few days and I'll just be at my "normal" level of depression, but I'm in the abyss right now. Thank you, too, to all of you who have so bravely shared your comments. It means a lot to know I'm not alone.
Thank you Belinda for your comment. I'm glad my comment was helpful.
This is a lovely and helpful, well-written article. I get those paralysis days about 40% of each year. They make me hugely unproductive. I'm trying so hard to find a way to get rid of them, but as you say here, the only way is to push gently through and do something.
One trick I make myself do is write an 'At least I' list before bed.In it I list every small thing I actually did do, from getting showered and dressed to cleaning a washbasin or emailing a client. Once you make the list of the tiny movements forward that you made on a bad day, it's easier to be kinder to yourself for having spent most of the day asleep or online.
This is my everyday even for things it should be exciting. I should be packing for my vacation, but what am I doing?? Laying here paralyzed, trying to get pass the wall I have built in my head, I'm exhausted and I just got up not that long ago. I know the only way to fight it is to get up and just do it.... But it's pretty damn hard even with Xanax. I hate living like this everyday it is exhausting. My therapist and I are working on it but I wished there was a shortcut. I don't want to be like this and I'm sure no one else does either.
I just read your comment and I just want you to know that I know what you are feeling, maybe not to its entirety but I can definitely relate. That's all I wanted to share. You are not the only one and I'm not eirher.
So I am not alone in this. At a wits end moment I googled "I am paralyzed by fear." I've recognized this fear before from childhood..only there was something to fear back then. My dangerously abusive brother who beat me savagely up until I was pulled from the home after I attempted suicide. That fear was recently rebooted when I was faced with this man at my older brothers funeral. I wasn't aware that HE would be present as he is in prison. But he was there, and made threats as well. This has seemingly put me back to being a little kid, paralyzed hidding under the porch steps again while he stalked me so he could beat me. But there isn't anything stalking me. I lost my job, I look up jobs think I could do that, but am panick struck when I need to act on it. This isn't fun, feelings of being a failure or weak are like cement in my chest and a weight over my body. What is wrong with you!!?? I say to myself. Reading the post and comments I think has helped me pin point this. I've repeated a mantra in my head saying no to fear but it isn't working. I don't want meds, I just want to control my own shit. But powerless to do so. I'm going deeper into depth, deeper into dispair. I don't see away out. I talk to no one about this for fear of ridicule or judgements because I thought no one would get it. I think this helped but really clueless as to what to do. If I can't depend on myself I think that's a game over situation. Which leads me to understand now, why some people do what they gotta do. I don't have that option though. So the long hard road out of hell is what I seek. Anyone got directions?
You certainly are not alone, Johnny. I'm sorry to hear you are experiencing such a rough time. I imagine you may be experiencing both grief from the loss of your older brother and a trauma response from encountering the brother who was abusive. I highly recommend finding a therapist who is experienced in treating trauma. Seek out someone who uses mind-body techniques. You may want to find someone who uses Eye-Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR). Here's an article that describes it: https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/traumaptsdblog/2016/01/ptsd-treatment-what-is-emdr-and…. You might also check out my tapping article/video for a free resource in managing fear/anxiety: https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/tag/tapping-tool-to-calm-anxiety/. Keep in mind that healing is indeed a process.
Where to begin?...This mental question seems permeated in my mind as one who is plagued by an anxiety induced paralysis. Each day is yet another of what untouched stack of things or undone chore could I hope to begin? I arrived to my condition after some earlier periods of emotional stress smacked right into a serious accident which led to a now 2nd decade of chronic pain. I am unable to tolerate meds of most any kind (took torturous experiences to discover.) How long I've told myself I'll regain at least a part of my old self if I try hard enough, be stubborn enough...If not tomorrow then next week, next month, next year. In truth I am my own harshest critic. So many years of seemingly climbing the sides of many steep, rocky cliffs only to fall back to the bottom time & time again all bruised and battered from the effort. Perhaps it's time to just make myself comfortable at the bottom of the cliff where it could be concluded that I'll be staying put. Daily I feel entitled to nothing including the air I breath as I fail to achieve something of a standard from my unrecognizable self. I feel for the most part, completely invisible as I've come to never leave my home outside of an absolutely necessary medical appointment. This is partly because my chronic pain becomes more intolerable with sitting upright or standing for 10-15 minutes or more. Quite some years ago, anxiety became so heightened that the smallest of daily tasks became insurmountable. Years ago I began giving my doctors my own opinion of how I saw my condition as a whole...That I'd be a happier and more productive person if I were able to switch bodies and places with a healthy prisoner who was perhaps serving a life sentence than living as what I feel to be "living dead." My strength to move through another day by God only. I certainly realize that I'm not first nor the only suffering soul as many suffer and some far greater than I. Neither will I be the last while humans tread. However, the battles of anxiety's daily mental noises suffocating productivity so that it becomes as a museum worthy episode...Makes each day a marked challenge. So each day and each moment of that day is heavily branded upon seemingly each of my brain cells with the thought of yet one more yesterday of missed opportunities...Where do I begin?
I hear your frustration and despair through your words. I'm sorry you are experiencing such a rough time that you seem to feel is not changing. Finding our way back or even initially to ourselves can feel so daunting when we're in such a challenging mental space. So, I hear you. You mention that you rarely leave your home. I wonder if you might look into online therapy as a way of receiving support in the comfort of your home. You may find some relief with some of the cognitive behavioral therapies and mindfulness. Mindfulness practices can be invaluable when it comes to managing pain. Seeking professional help would be a good place to begin.
I'm grateful for your kind and experienced response. I've not familiarized myself with the avenue of online therapy. However, I remain open to options of any source offering hopes of improvement. Therapists office visits which I've experienced in the past while not a total loss offered very little in the way of noticeable progress of which I appreciate the tiniest. Many of my pain physician specialists have been forthcoming in explaining of how long term chronic pain can actually remap the brain as pain travels the very same biological pathway links that anxiety, depression, etc. utilize triggering either or. I understand it to simply mean that all are competing for intricate neurological circuitry space and the synapses firing becomes a bit (or much more in some cases) misguided and perhaps even congestively exhausted. Throw into the mix the unwelcomed visitor known as insomnia and the snowball effect provides even more ammunition to the enemies. How I wish I could improve upon my own condition and find some way, if but only a small one to help (even if only one) of the many other(s) who feel parked on a treadmill in an isolated space with no off switch. I've so many years of physical therapy, specialists, multiple surgeries, hypnosis, psychological tests & exams (to convince myself that "I" wasn't becoming part of the problem), and all both in & out of state. I very much appreciate your input Melissa and I'll make special effort to locate a hopefully tried & true reputable source for further exploration of online therapy.
*Wishing well to all that are affected by anxiety, chronic pain or any other debilitating condition or disorder.
This is me exactly, Susan. Every carefully thought out word is perfect. How do we get help when we know the way out but are incapable of forward motion. Faking my way through anything that doesn’t offer the comfort of a buffer of anonymity like me keyboard leaving me feeling electrocuted with panic. If it wasn’t for a keyboard, I wouldn’t be able to form sentences. At least what I write and post online I can proof read a thousand times and ultimately delete if I can’t bring myself to allow it to ‘just be’. I want some kind of life. I don’t deserve any kind of life. Do I want help? Am I just a spoilt brat? What about people with real life threatening problems? And I’m over here complaining about how I’m too scared to end it all. Would my kids rather a bedridden mental health nightmare for a Mother over being free from me forever? I’m not suicidal. I know the stats for children with a parent who has committed suicide. I don’t drink, or use any illegal drugs to cope. I can CDT/DBT like a Mother $&cker and do the steps to small victories and I feel absolutely nothing. No relief. Just more of the same. If I lay really still and busy my mind with news articles and be given the gift of some sleep in the day I am thrilled. Then the guilt sets in. What an haven’t done. What I can’t seem to do. Why can I not stay fixed. More anxiety. Fortune telling. All or nothing. You name the distortion, I’ll provide you with examples. When there is a way to fix a broken brain with a broken brain, I would like the opportunity to try please.
Me too! You summed it up beautifully!