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10-10-2017, 05:53 PM   #1
Sophabulous
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Work stress & IBD

How do you all deal with stress at work? Iíve been flaring for a while anyway, and now (for reasons I wonít bore you with) my workload has quadrupled at least. This happened a month ago, and Iím already SO behind itís unbelievable.

I have no control over this, and despite it being badly needed, management are agreeing that we desperately need help whilst simultaneously not doing anything about it. They will not commit to anything whatsoever. Super helpful!

Most nights I come home from work physically and mentally exhausted, and I usually have to lie down for an hour or so to Ďre-setí myself. Over the last couple of weeks this has become so much worse. Taking a lunch break is impossible, so thereís no chance of getting out for half an hour to clear my head. When I get home all I want to do is sleep, so meditation or exercise is unlikely to happen no matter how much I want to.

I already use essential oils and rescue remedy to get me through the day, but these are only going so far. Iím in a horrendous state of mind the entire time Iím at work, and by the time Iíve got home, had a sleep and a relaxing bath along with everything else itís time to go to bed again. Iíve lost 6 pounds in less than a week, and Iíll be covering other departments (and therefore forgoing my own work) more than ever for the next 3 weeks due to holidays etc.

Iím starting to come down with a cold/virus as it is, so itís going to be a pretty crappy time for the foreseeable future.


What would you all advise?
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10-10-2017, 06:00 PM   #2
cmack
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Hi Soph,

Is there any way you could get someone to help with your tasks at work? I don't know what else to suggest but I sure feel for you. I have been in the same position before and it seemed like the more I did at work the more they piled on me with no extra pay. If nothing else you can vent to me, I wish there was more I could do.

Your friend who cares,

Chris
10-11-2017, 12:37 PM   #3
Guerrero
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I try to focus more on myself and my personal life than on my professional life now.

My colleagues and management have been kind during my last flare, without knowing in detail the reasons of my health issues and my pathology. I'm lucky I can manage my work efforts based on how I feel, and I try to cut any stress. Finding a good work environment is the key.
10-11-2017, 01:12 PM   #4
Cat-a-Tonic
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Soph, I don't suppose you could have a look around for a different job? It sounds like your current workload and job environment are just not good or sustainable. It's not going to do anyone any good if the stress lands you in the hospital.

I know that's easier said than done, though. I'm dealing with a lot of work stress myself right now. They keep saying that my department might get laid off, but in the meantime the workload has increased and so has the stress. I'm holding out for being laid off, honestly. If I get laid off then I should get a decent severance package, and I can COBRA (pay out of pocket in full, using my severance pay) my health insurance. That way I could take a bit of time off and recharge for a bit before I dive back into the working world. My hubby works 2 part-time jobs, but neither of them offer health insurance, so the insurance is the main reason that I haven't already found another job. If I got another job and quit my current job, my health insurance would lapse and my insurance at the new job likely wouldn't kick in for a few months. But if I get laid off, being able to COBRA my insurance means I shouldn't have a lapse.

So, that's my current thought. I know things are different in the UK, hopefully you don't even have to worry about health insurance? If that's the case, if it were me, I'd be looking for a different job. Even if you find one that pays a bit less, if it's also less stressful and doesn't negatively impact your health and energy like this, then I would think that might be worthwhile. Just my thoughts. Take care and I hope things improve soon!
10-11-2017, 05:16 PM   #5
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I agree with Cat. You need a new job. That's what I did about four years ago. I had a hectic stressful job that I loved, but it just got too busy. I took a pay cut, but my health improved. Think of the long term consequences. Doesn't sound like you're having much of a life either.
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10-11-2017, 05:31 PM   #6
Sophabulous
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Thanks all. I would love to be able to focus on my personal life a bit more, but to be honest Iím so exhausted all the time that itís just not possible. Iím only like this when flaring, when Iím well I really do make the most of life outside the office lol

Good points made here cmack, it is definitely a workplace that drops more on you constantly if you keep getting it all done. I donít mind that when itís possible, but weíve reached the point where what I used to do is impossible unless I work late every night. Not just a little bit late, probably 2-3 hours maybe even more.

Iím at the point now where Iím not even doing my own job 50% of the time because Iím constantly helping others as theyíre also behind. They do help me in return when they can, weíre a really great team like that, but I feel this has been being taken advantage of for a few months now. My supervisor is furious about it and very supportive, but our hands are tied. Another member of the team is away now for nearly 3 weeks so itís going to get worse.

Cat Iím sorry to hear your situation hasnít improved. I remember you saying you were told your job was safe and now they are messing you around again? Thatís really terrible I hope things work out for the best whatever happens.

I could look for a different job, but this is where Iím stuck. Iím well paid (but would work for less if it avoided all this), but because Iíve worked for the business for more than 2 years I have employment rights etc. If I go somewhere else while flaring and I have to take time off in the first 2 years I could potentially lose the job over it, or anything else for that matter. My job is only a short drive away in a really small town, so if I moved jobs there would likely be a commute of a few miles to another neighbouring town or even one of the local cities which adds to my costs if Iím working for less. Thereís also good benefits and perks which obviously are nice to have but not essential.

A lot of my colleagues are being promoted and due to some changes coming up thereís potentially going to be some brilliant opportunities so I think itís worth sticking out this rough patch. Itís like you said though, I donít want to end up in Hospital over it, I feel I canít go off sick, and I donít know how much longer I can keep up the pace either.

A really difficult situation, and if anyone would just let us know how long this is expected to go on for Iíd feel I can relax a little bit knowing it wonít be forever. Right now as far as I know it could go on another month or forever! Iíve seen others Ďtestedí like this to see what they are capable of which Iím all for, but I do wish it could have happened to me when I was feeling better ha ha.

Iíve already been given a lot of new things to get my teeth into which Iím really enjoying and are great experience for the future so itís not all bad. Itís just balancing it all which is the problem.

I know itís a real ask, but are there any miracle tips out there for this situation, or do I just ride out the flare and hope nothing gets out of hand before this is resolved? Iím at the hospital tomorrow for my counselling to start Remicade, but I donít know when Iíll be starting it due to a problem with blood screening. Hopefully it will be soon and that will fix me up, but I just need some help in the meantime :-(

Last edited by Sophabulous; 10-11-2017 at 05:53 PM.
10-11-2017, 05:47 PM   #7
Sophabulous
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Sorry, just to add following your comment Tuff! These thoughts have crossed my mind also, but I canít help but feel cheated. Iím well educated, more so than is required for my current job and so I want to put this to good use which is just starting to happen for me in this role at long last.

I donít have enough experience in anything else to get another job in a different role, and Iím not far off the top of the tree in my current position experience wise. I could stomach a pay cut, but I already feel like a failure as it is. I I try not to think like this as I only graduated a few years ago so I have a long road ahead, but I had totally different plans for my life until this disease came along. Iíve got to the point where I feel Iíve invested so much time and energy already that I need to see it through, wherever that may take me. I work for a huge company and with a bit of luck the possibilities are endless.

I think Iíve got a bit of an axe to grind, Iíve already lost so much time and progress, I would be hugely resentful if I had to relinquish this too. I hope that makes sense. Maybe I should cut my losses and start over, but itís not an easy decision. Iím incredibly pigheaded like that, I wonít be told I canít do something and I have to learn the hard way!

I genuinely think I would regret my decision either way at this point
10-11-2017, 06:37 PM   #8
cmack
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Hi Soph,

You have to put your physical and mental health first. Without good health, even the sharpest mind is almost always wasted. I hope you can tough it out and make it but you have to know when to start looking for a different position that has less stress. You may need to move within the company or elsewhere, very possibly elsewhere. I know these seem like they are harsh words but I really believe that you need to know when to make your move.

You are not a failure either, sometimes we just get dealt a bad hand.


All the best, pm me any time,

Chris
10-11-2017, 06:51 PM   #9
Sophabulous
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Hi Soph,



You have to put your physical and mental health first. Without good health, even the sharpest mind is almost always wasted. I hope you can tough it out and make it but you have to know when to start looking for a different position that has less stress. Within the company or elsewhere, very possibly elsewhere. I know these seem like they are harsh words but I really believe that you need to know when to make your move.



You are not a failure either, sometimes we just get given a bad hand.





All the best, pm me any time,



Chris


Not harsh words at all and much appreciated! Itís funny you should say about the sharpest mind, mine has turned to mush since this all started, and it was already suffering to start with! Even my partner has been asking if Iím due to have my B12 jab, and heís really not interested in these things usually ;-)

Iím going to give things a real think over, but Iím not a quitter so Iím my own worst enemy sometimes. This situation is a perfect example!
10-11-2017, 08:16 PM   #10
Cross-stitch gal
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I know what you mean about not quitting Soph. I've been working where I'm at for over 16 years really bad flare at one time and all. If it helps any, I've even got a thread about it.

I know also that getting another job isn't always possible, I myself have tried many times. But, after all this wait I'm trying again and maybe will finally get my chance at something different.

I guess, what I'm saying is whatever your choice we're here for you. Sending you lots of hugs!!!
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10-12-2017, 11:04 AM   #11
Tuff
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You've already lost six pounds. You really need to take your coffee breaks and lunch break, tank up and get a breather. It sounds like fatigue has set in, maybe you are going anemic, or low on vitamins. These days employees are treated as expendable resources. It doesn't sound like management is going to do anything to help. Can you ask your doctor for anything? Prednisone taper? Take care.
10-12-2017, 12:47 PM   #12
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Sometimes you have to try to take a step back, take a deep breath and figure out what exactly you can accomplish with the time you have. I fully understand wanting to help others out with their work - BUT - it can't/shouldn't be done at the expense of your own work. Looking at it from a Management perspective - you help others to get THEIR work done - but YOUR OWN isn't getting done.....not a good thing. Make sure there is a balance there so that your own responsibilities are taken care of.

Looking at it from an EMPLOYEE perspective - make sure you aren't being taken advantage of, helping others get their work done while yours suffers.....

Maybe to help with some of the stress (not knowing exactly what kind of job you do)...set some goals/milestones for yourself - to help you not stress so much. Make them REASONABLE - I'm going to get x, y, z done today, if there is time left over during the day I will hep out a, b, c.....

I'm going through a bit of this myself right now- my Supervisor asked me last week if I could take on another building inspection, which is a very sensitive location/Agency that we are working out a 'deal' with.....I was picked as I tend to get along well with others, and am not one to go overboard or be too strict when the need arises (although I can be if needed!!).....so now, in addition to my regular work, I have a building that is probably 500,000 square feet or more to cover before the end of the month....luckily I've been able to get about half of it done already, but the month is running out.....

Hopefully the blood screening is sorted out with you too so you can start Remicade - and I hope it works as well for you as it does for me!
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10-12-2017, 03:14 PM   #13
Cross-stitch gal
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I totally agree with Lisa!!!

One thing I didn't say was that things where I am are getting so stressful in the department I am that quite often I'm feeling like I'm running around like a chicken with my head cut off. They're cutting hours and using less people at night than we've ever used. So, the stress level has been going through the roof. Many times I pretty much come home totally exhausted and ready to scream because those of us at night are being expected to do the job of 2 or 3 people rather than 1.

It's sounding like they're getting ready to hire strictly seasonal people for the holidays, but because of the shortage of hours that means that it will effect those of us who've been there longer too.

I recently talked with one of my managers who didn't fill me in before, that because of the shortage we're no longer being expected to do a 100% recovery of our department at night. So, I myself am having to take a step back too. It's not easy, especially if you're used to doing things one way to switch to another. But, sometimes it's needed for our health.

I guess what I'm saying is that I understand where you're going. Take care.
10-14-2017, 06:52 AM   #14
Sophabulous
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Thanks all, I had an appointment on Thursday and Iíve been told in no uncertain terms that Iím going to have to do another liquid diet, or course of steroids. Iím seriously bummed, but I know it will help me to feel better so I guess thatís the main thing.

I canít really go into too much detail on here, with it being a public forum I donít want this to come back and haunt me, but if anyone is interested i can PM the exact circumstances which make this so tricky
10-14-2017, 05:29 PM   #15
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I have a stressful job. And I use to react quite badly most days.

But I no longer get stressed. I remain calm.

I suppose it would make sense to perhaps get a less stressful one. But most businesses these days seem to have stress. And I like the job otherwise.

Stress is the very worst thing for me with UC.

I consulted with a herbalist, and she made me up a five herb adaptogen liquid tonic, where I take 5mls in water twice a day.

https://www.globalhealingcenter.com/...re-adaptogens/

All of the herbs also benefit my UC, so a win-win situation.

Another thing that helps to reduce stress, is guided meditations. Loads of free meditation on YouTube, otherwise I like:

http://www.mindspace.org.uk/2011/11/...reduce-stress/

And also yoga which I often do in my office at work in the morning:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-l...a/art-20044733

Swimming after work really helps my husband.
10-14-2017, 05:48 PM   #16
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You say that, when you get home, all you want to do is sleep.

I understand that. I use to be in that situation myself.

And that, meditation or exercise is unlikely to happen no matter how much you want to.

I understand that too.

But you really need to start prioritizing your health. It is that simple.

A meditation takes five minutes. Surely you can find a spare five minutes each day?

If you can't then, you urgently need to re-evaluate your life.

Perhaps maybe when you first get up in the morning? Or on the train? Or when sitting in your car in a traffic jam? Or in the toilets at work?

Get a good guided meditation on your mobile phone or personal walkman or ipod, and sit on the toilet seat for five minutes at work listening to it using headphones. Do that once a day every day, and you will soon see the benefits.

Before you go to sleep, you can practice Yoga Nidra, which will hugely benefit your overall health:

http://www.abc.net.au/health/library...23/2633472.htm

You can even do Buteyko Breathing whilst sitting at your desk at work:


There are numerous ways you can incorporate these beneficial stress-reducing practices into your everyday life.

Last edited by Lisa; 10-18-2017 at 08:38 AM. Reason: removed link to commercial site.
10-14-2017, 07:26 PM   #17
cmack
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Hi Soph,

You have to put your physical and mental health first. Without good health, even the sharpest mind is almost always wasted. I hope you can tough it out and make it but you have to know when to start looking for a different position that has less stress. You may need to move within the company or elsewhere, very possibly elsewhere. I know these seem like they are harsh words but I really believe that you need to know when to make your move.

You are not a failure either, sometimes we just get dealt a bad hand.


All the best, pm me any time,

Chris



I meant it, pm me any time. I like to talk...has anyone noticed?
10-15-2017, 05:20 PM   #18
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My job is stressful.

I tried managing the stress by doing yoga and mindfullness. They are fantastic for some, but I found forcing myself to do them didn't work. You have to want to do it.

For me the simplest things help, like walking and talking to loved ones.

The only thing that truly worked was being honest about my health and making myself slow down sometimes. It's tough! I've felt like I've let people down before and can't do my job. But I know if I don't I'll only be sicker and miss more work.

I know everyone's circumstances are different and appreciate there's no easy fix.

I'm still learning to balance things.
10-15-2017, 05:46 PM   #19
Sophabulous
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Thanks everyone. It sounds like I need to get a little tougher and stand up for myself. Iím very much a team player and happy to help anyone, but that canít really carry on the way things are. Iím also a self confessed doormat, and Iím not going to get anywhere if my attitude remains as such.

I actually love Pilates and use a few meditation apps etc, but I still feel like crap. I think Iím expecting too much from them, no matter how much they help my mind is never truly switched off or Ďforgettingí about the next day. What can I say, Iím a worrier!

Itís difficult to explain as itís a very unique situation, Iím pretty sure whatís happening at the moment wouldnít fly at any other workplace. Thereís a lot of goodwill being taken advantage of for sure.

Interestingly the one person whoís being really tough on this and standing up against it is the newest person to join the business. I think years of working this way to an extent (although nowhere near as bad as things are now) has ground us down. This was my first full time job fresh out of university so I donít know any different. Older colleagues have always said itís like nowhere else theyíve ever worked. Sometimes thatís a good thing, but right now itís a nightmare.

Iím very loyal to my job and the company, and part of the reason this is getting to me is that I know itís going to affect the business going forward, not just the staff
10-16-2017, 03:23 AM   #20
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Earlier this year, we would leave work as normal, but instead of coming home and flopping in front of the telly or turning to booze to "relax", we would go to the pool first.

Swimming laps is a great way to work off stress, plus had the added bonus of getting fitter

First time I went I managed 1 lap (with heavy breathing and swearing) and within a few weeks I was doing 20 laps and enjoying it.

My husband who has an extremely busy and stressful job, said swimming after work was an amazing and cheap way to de-stress.

And I often get off the train or bus earlier than I need to and walk, as helps clear my head.

Even if you don't have a pool near you, anything is better than nothing.

Even pilates in your lounge room following a YouTube clip could work.

Failing all this, a herbalist could make you up an adaptogen liquid tonic of up to five herbs (depending what other meds you are on) and they work brilliantly for reducing stress and making life easier to cope with. My two favourite herbs for this are schisandra and rhodiola. Both these herbs are very popular in China at exam time!
10-19-2017, 03:14 PM   #21
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You say you went to a herbalist. Do you think you could create something on your own without a herbalist?

p.s. I hope I am responding correctly. I cut and deleted the message out of this box and entered my reply.
10-19-2017, 05:53 PM   #22
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You say you went to a herbalist. Do you think you could create something on your own without a herbalist?
Hello

Well I personally could create something on my own (and often do) because I have a certificate in it.

I studied herbal medicine at college for two years which included six months worth of ratio herbal manufacturing.

However, if you have not studied it, then no do not attempt to create something on your own.

I know people think herbs are safe because they are natural. But they are very powerful, and should be treated and respected in the same way you would medication prescribed by your doctor.

For example, I absolutely love Glycyrrhiza glabra (liquorice) for a multiple of conditions, but it can cause high blood pressure. I also adore Curcuma longa (turmeric) for inflammation, but that should be avoided with people on blood thinning medication. And anything containing Hypericum Perforatum (St John's Wort) which is great for mild depression, needs to be avoided by women on the pill and people with a light sensitivity.

A qualified and experienced herbalist should be consulted, they will take into consideration your family history, your history, your symptoms, current medications, your lifestyle, your diet and so on, and prescribe something to target your particular needs. A liquid extract is the best and quickest working herb, pills probably need to be avoided as hard to digest them with IBD.

I have found herbal medicine to be brilliant for reducing stress, anxiety and fatigue. I would have had a nervous breakdown without it!
10-19-2017, 06:31 PM   #23
Sophabulous
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Thank you all for your advice up until this point. Iím no longer even a little stressed....this is because I know there is no way I can even try to catch up alone at this point. I would need help all day every day for at least 2 weeks and probably longer (which is NOT going to happen) to get back to where I usually would be. Honestly, if itís not even salvageable is it worth worrying about? I say that as a worrier and an anxious person in general!

My limit has been reached. This is actually quite a liberating feeling! Iíve made peace with the fact Iím doing all I can possibly do, whilst expected to do other things alongside this which eclipse my actual duties. If Iím questioned Iíve just got to figure out a polite way of saying that without losing my temper lol!

Something happened today that just made me think, Iíll take the bull by the horns and try, but Iím not going to blame myself if it fails. Things are deliberately being forced on us, that had not been my decision or something I have control over. Iím at the stage where if this all goes down in flames then so be it.

Itís horrible to think that the staff failing to deliver is the best outcome, but that is truly the case here. Once we demonstrate that things are too much there will either be a change or there wonít.

Not my call or my problem!

Over & out
10-21-2017, 07:10 AM   #24
beaches
 
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Hello

Well I personally could create something on my own (and often do) because I have a certificate in it.

I studied herbal medicine at college for two years which included six months worth of ratio herbal manufacturing.

However, if you have not studied it, then no do not attempt to create something on your own.

I know people think herbs are safe because they are natural. But they are very powerful, and should be treated and respected in the same way you would medication prescribed by your doctor.

For example, I absolutely love Glycyrrhiza glabra (liquorice) for a multiple of conditions, but it can cause high blood pressure. I also adore Curcuma longa (turmeric) for inflammation, but that should be avoided with people on blood thinning medication. And anything containing Hypericum Perforatum (St John's Wort) which is great for mild depression, needs to be avoided by women on the pill and people with a light sensitivity.

A qualified and experienced herbalist should be consulted, they will take into consideration your family history, your history, your symptoms, current medications, your lifestyle, your diet and so on, and prescribe something to target your particular needs. A liquid extract is the best and quickest working herb, pills probably need to be avoided as hard to digest them with IBD.

I have found herbal medicine to be brilliant for reducing stress, anxiety and fatigue. I would have had a nervous breakdown without it!
Thank you. I will look into this.
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