Is this burnout??

SeekingAfrica

MyPTSD Pro
I am super frustrated today.

I recently did many regular things I had to- relocate back home for a bit, reset my work... taking some summertime for walks and recharging. I've been so good, and actually better than in a while. So I've been working, taking self-care time, doing chores, getting the first dose of vaccinations, actually finally having the energy to exercise regularly and read. As well as had a few very useful days. The relocation wasn't part of my original plan, but I tried to embrace it and make the best of it. The last several days were very full of things I haven't done in a while, which, I thought I handled beautifully, I adapted, and I was very proud of how everything was going.

And then today I woke up and something was off. First I had nightmares all night, no clue of what because the loan mower sound woke me so I forgot everything but the feeling of the dream. And then it was this feeling like I know things need to get done, but I can barely be anything but horizontal. Like I have 0 energy and 0 will to do anything. And everything feeling bad. The usual things I watch or read or whatever feeling like they are giving me a migraine because my head is so full of information there's no space to process any new information. I did self-massage, I indulged in my breakfast, I took something for the migraine. And still, no energy or will. It's not super depressed, it's not super anxious, it's just an absolute lack of ability to make myself do anything.

I pushed all plans to tomorrow. I tried reading out in the garden for a bit. I tried watching. I tried having a nap. I tried reorganizing my laptop, which always makes me feel better (I like organization). But I just don't have the energy to do anything for more than 15min at a time and I just want to sleep all day. I genuinely don't understand why I'm so exhausted. Might be more of mental fatigue from jamming a lot of things I haven't done in the last days combined with the physical exhaustion of getting my body back to working out daily for an hour at least? Def. not sick, and even physically I've slept plenty, I just feel like all my batteries are at under 0. ...
 

DharmaGirl

MyPTSD Pro
I've been fighting that too these past couple of weeks. I was so dissociated I couldn't function, and I looked for colors to name and tried to feel my feet etc...but it didn't bring me out. Mine was withdrawal since I'm bad about taking my meds. I think you might just be overtired from being so stressed before the move. Now you have the chance to shutdown, your psyche needs rest. Can you just relax for a few days, and see where that takes you?
 

Friday

Moderator
When I have a sudden symptom smackdown... I can usually source it to 1:3 places.

1 - Life Stuff. IE Stress Cup Most frequent by far.

2 - Pure PTSD. Triggers, stressors, etc. totally unrelated to what is going on in my life. Everything can be ticking along just fine. And out of a clear blue sky? BOOM. Oh, hello. f*ck f*ck f*ckity f*ck.

3 - Life Stuff + PTSD Stuff. IE I’m far more reactive to things I’m usually fine with, because my stress cup is too full.

Your life stuff is mostly gold, doing better than you have been in a loooong time, but? You ALSO just had a helluvan upset, a few weeks of crisis-mode. Everything just changed, for you. So it makes total sense to me that you’re having a bit of a delayed reaction to that. Giant series of stressors, managed very very well, life resumes, doing better than you have been in a long time...and...crash. IME? Probably because it’s “safe” to. The crisis has past. Normal life has resumed. That’s exactly when I, personally, fall on my face for a day or six.

It’s shortest when I actively call a “snow day” or mini-vacation. Cancel everything, rather than trying to push through; rest, recharge, and resume. As long as I keep minding my stress cup it passes all on its own, very quickly.

It can drag on for weeks/months if I try to push though -or- if I suddenly stop doing all the stress management stuff I’ve been doing, that’s been making my life gold.
 

Justmehere

Sponsor
Giant series of stressors, managed very very well, life resumes, doing better than you have been in a long time...and...crash. IME? Probably because it’s “safe” to. The crisis has past. Normal life has resumed. That’s exactly when I, personally, fall on my face for a day or six.
This happens to me on a pretty reliable basis. It's like bam, safe enough to feel like crap now.
 

ruborcoraxxx

MyPTSD Pro
Yep. In critical situations? Find someone who’s calm, reasonable, active. The very second it becomes subcritical, forget about it. As you say it’s not really depressed, it’s a tiredness, blankness and weirdness with everything. A day goes by and you don’t even understand how. You just watched going on and on.
 

SeekingAfrica

MyPTSD Pro
First of all, thanks everyone who commented. Today I'm having another such day and had a realisation about it. Combined with all I read in your comments, especially those by @Friday made me have sort of a lightbulb moment. I think I know what is going on. I don't like what is going on, but that is neither here nor there.

Everything just changed, for you. So it makes total sense to me that you’re having a bit of a delayed reaction to that.
Yeah, that actually makes sense. Because when I first got PTSD I was abroad. Managed to pretend I'm fine and nothing happened for full 2 months, until I was home and it hit me that coming home didn't mean I was suddenly fine. Forgot about delayed reactions completely (which, I mean, is a healthy sign, means I've had less of them lately).

That’s exactly when I, personally, fall on my face for a day or six.
That is so familiar it makes me want to cry. I have lovely close friends who know I deal with PTSD and know a lot of details. Still I think explaining such days to them is very hard when they haven't experienced them. Just this one sentence was exactly how it happens for me, so much. Glad not to have as many such days, but clearly I still have them.

I actively call a “snow day” or mini-vacation. Cancel everything, rather than trying to push through; rest, recharge, and resume.
It's what seems to be most effective for me too. I've tried different approaches and this has helped the most I think.

It can drag on for weeks/months if I try to push though -or- if I suddenly stop doing all the stress management stuff I’ve been doing, that’s been making my life gold.
Yeah, self care and very specific self care on daily basis is one of the things that got me though when I had my dark period (when I wasn't sure I had future, or will to fight even to get up in the morning and wanted to give up).

@Friday thank you for that explanation, helped a lot. I realised the reason for that day was a trigger... but I also think maybe it's hitting me this hard because my stress cup has been super full for the first 6 months of this year. So having a quiet more relaxing month, doesn't erase that fact. It will take a while to 'empty out' all that stress., I suppose. So trigger + stress. And I know that because I'm having that reaction today, too.

I used to have a very silly trigger, but a very strong one. Something very prominent I remember around the time of my trauma is all the bruises. Cause I fought. So that memory of bruises and all my muscles hurting somehow relates to the trauma for me. When I started ballet 2 years later, for like 6 months every time I was sore (which as a beginner to regular physical activity was a LOT) I would get triggered. In class, after class, the next day when I wake sore everywhere. I'm still dancing so clearly I got over that. But between the pandemic and sciatica last year, I was laying a lot. Now I'm finally at a state where I can get back to physical activity. My body is not able to catch up so easily, but because my ballet classes are 90min at least, even when I try to have short workout it often ends up 45-90min long. Last week, I had 2 days of 60-90m working out and felt super empowered. Then woke up sore everywhere and that day hit. Yesterday I was feeling super great about starting to feel energy and connected to my body again. So I had 60min workout, and then at the end of the day- an hour walk too. Today woke up sore like crazy, and it hit me again. Kind of forgot that triggers can return, tbh. I thought this one took me so long to get over, so once I'm over it that's it.

I am guessing the solution would be dial it down for the sake of my body (do frequent, but 20-30min workouts for a bit, until my body catches up to my will).
But for today and maybe a little tomorrow, I think I may need snow day. Or just taking it easy, doing what I feel able to. I just feel entirely disconnected from the ability or need to do anything. And I'm catching myself dissociate at some moments, and also thinking I'm fine, but obsessively looking for tips on coping. (guidance). I know how to cope, just when I panic sometimes research is my go-to. It's like I can't admit I'm not fine, but I am not fine and so I keep seeking solutions if that makes sense. Sorry this is so long.
 
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