You’re admirable, productive, detail oriented, helpful, prepared, driven, organized, an overachiever, a “yes” person, motivated, outwardly appear calm and collected, people are inspired by you, YOU ARE WHAT SUCCESS LOOKS LIKE… well maybe on the outside.
On the inside-often hidden from others, you have unrealistic expectations, mental and physical exhaustion, fear of disappointing people, avoid calling in sick, constantly compare yourself to other people, neglect your own needs, unable to say “no”, overthink, have difficulty staying present, people please and define yourself through external validation. So underneath your nearly perfect exterior and image you’re fighting anxiety. And in this circumstance, we call it high functioning anxiety.
High functioning anxiety is a reference for people who live with anxiety that drives them forward rather than hold them back. On the surface you’re the picture of success but the inside tells a different story. There is a lack of research on high functioning anxiety and it’s not currently recognized as a mental health diagnosis. Regardless, the internal battle with anxiety is real.
“Patients will say they have a hard time falling asleep or staying asleep or just not having a restful sleep. Irritability is also common with high functioning anxiety. For example, if you’re busy and anxious, you could also be really snappy.” Dr. Sasha Hamdani (High Functioning Anxiety: What It Is, Symptoms And Treatment)
Can you relate to the internal battle? If you can, I commend you for recognizing your imperfection—and we’re all imperfect! It’s time to value yourself and not ignore the inner struggle. Untreated, this struggle can lead into substance abuse, depression, an eating disorder, or chronic physical ailments. Counseling is a great option to work through the anxiety. Remember, getting help doesn’t make you weak-it just might help the interior match the exterior- imperfection included!