Does it feel like you have been burning at both ends lately?
Is it almost as if you are always just waiting for everything to fall apart and the worst disaster in the world to take place at your hands? Many suffer from this tightening, gut wrenching feeling of doom on a daily basis. There is nothing wrong with those who suffer from the (temporarily) debilitating clench in the chest and panicky racing mind – they are simply suffering from a nervous breakdown. Don’t be frightened – in fact you can see the warning signs coming and seek support from family, friends, or a mental health professional before you are in too deep with a nervous breakdown – described as an inability to handle and cope with life’s demands both mentally, emotionally and physiologically.
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Let’s get started and look 7 signs you may be headed for a nervous breakdown.
1. FUZZY ON THE DETAILS
Lack of focus is a first warning sign in many sufferers. If you notice you’ve been slacking a little at work – but not on purpose – simply because your brain is not functioning as you’d planned, you may be close to a breakdown. Thoughts may become fuzzy, you may not even be able to remember what someone told you six minutes ago. Try to improve your concentration by taking frequent short breaks from your work or whatever task you are working on. You may find that short breaks and deep breath exercises can do wonders to reset the mind.
2. RACING PULSE AND POUNDING HEART
If it feels like your heart is going to beat out of your chest, chances are this is intensely interconnected with your mental state of being at the time. If you find yourself with a racing heart – step outside a minute and focus on the sensation of the air on your skin, take some deep breaths and wait for your nervous system to calm down – this is a physical manifestation of a nervous breakdown that should be taken seriously.
3. HORRID HEADACHES
Severe headaches are a common (but often overlooked) symptom of nervous breakdown that can sometimes have an onset of several weeks before a severe mental break. Sometimes, it is advisable to begin to reevaluate your daily activities and stress load if you begin experiencing headaches. Once you are back at a level of activity and interaction with others that is not questioning your mental health, the headaches may ease up almost instantaneously.
4. STOMACH DISTRESS
The stomach, like every other part of the body will invariably be connected to your whole being’s health. If your stomach feels like it’s been twisted in knots and queasy – it may be a physical sign that your body and mind are under too much stress. Sip some known folk remedies for upset stomach such as some soothing peppermint tea or a stomach easing herbal tincture, and calmly say “Namaste” while vowing not to get too wound up over the details anymore.
5. UNEXPLAINED SLEEP PATTERNS
A dark night of the soul will sometimes work its way into our bedtime routine as well. If we are headed for or experiencing a nervous breakdown, part of the likely outcome will be trouble in bed. No, we didn’t mean it that way. You may experience queasy feelings when waking up halfway through your sleep, and not being able to fall back asleep or you may not be able to fall asleep at all. Sufferers on the opposite end of the spectrum will probably feel like staying in bed and sleeping all day. Depression and nervous breakdowns change your brains chemistry – so be sure to set healthy bedtimes and stick to them, regardless of if you are tired or not. Your body will catch up and your mind will follow.
Related: 12 Hacks For a Better Sleep
6. CATCHING (AND KEEPING) THE BLUES
We all feel blue from time to time, but when one should be concerned is when blue is the new normal. If you have felt depressed for several weeks on end, there may be a deeper problem to blame that needs addressing – and a mild to moderate depression may signify a nervous breakdown is near. Stay active and hang around positive influences, this too shall pass.
7. ANXIETY PRONE DAYS AND NIGHTS
Anxiety can be such a heavy burden that you feel overwhelmed and unable to face what lie ahead. Anxiety is also a clever way of finding out that you may be pushing your limits and headed for trouble in the form of a nervous breakdown. Focus on deep breathing, living in the day, and only doing what’s in front of you. Breaking down your life into smaller chunks has an odd way of making things a little more manageable.
If you have experienced any of these signs, do not be alarmed, simply seek refuge in those close to you and express how you feel to someone today. You may find that everyone feels like this from time to time, and sharing your burden and venting to another human being may do your heart some good.