I had just started working for a new employer following a three-year break in my career due to my mental health problems. I was looking forward to building a new career, developing professional skills, making new friends and finally moving forward in my life.
Anxiety is a thing that everybody experiences to different extents, but people need to realise that when anxiety dictates your every move and action, that it’s not just being a “little bit nervous”. It’s an exhausting battle fighting with your mind every day and it doesn’t always feel like you’re winning.
I’ve always been open about my mental illness in most areas of my life, but until last year I’d never spoken about it at work. I was concerned that if I told colleagues I struggle with general anxiety disorder and depression, it would hamper my progression and I wouldn’t be taken seriously.
It’s hard to tell if a person is depressed unless they break down in front of you or manage to tell you themselves. Depression doesn’t leave scars, not always. And it’s hard to say how bad it is if you can’t see the wound.
If you know someone who’s going through a difficult time, if you have even the slightest doubt, reach out.