Hypervigilance: What it is & how it has affected my life| #Day16of100

In 2019, I was close to having a nervous breakdown. I was having minor but persistent health issues while working at a job that I absolutely hated, which was only adding insult to injury.

From 2017 to 2019, I was suspended 3 times, ranging from 1 to 5 days without pay. In all of my life, I had never, ever been suspended from a job. The first suspension happened during the third year with the company. By that time, I had started noticing unfair treatment & incompetencies on behalf of management & became vocal about it.

There were a gazillion managers & supervisors, which was totally unnecessary but anyway, & I happened to be cool with one of them. She was recently promoted &, in hindsight, had a difficult time making the transition. What I mean by that is, there was not a clear distinction between the now esteemed position & her previous one.

There was no line drawn in the sand. She still continued operating in the gossiping manner as she had before. She talked down on all of the other managers & made all of her “friends” feel as though she was on our sides. But that was far from the truth.

There was one supervisor who barely got along with anyone. She blatantly gave me some misinformation &, when called out on it, lied about it. I went to my friend, a.k.a. My New Supervisor, & told her my frustration while simultaneously calling the other supervisor an “incompetent ass.” She & I were standing off to the side & away from the public & other coworkers & not within earshot of ANYONE. The next thing I knew, I was getting called into the office by the higher ups.

I was told that I was insubordinate & I couldn’t figure out why the fuck how.

She went & told management on me but guised it as me being overheard by a higher up/superior who was “walking by.”

It was explained to me that during my conversation with my friend/supervisor that prior to my calling the other supervisor an incompetent ass, my friend/supervisor cautioned me not to say anything wrong or out the way when she sensed my anger escalating. Now, that part was true. We had been friends for 3 years by that time. She knew me. However, in my eyes, she was my friend & had been. So, I felt I could express how I felt because that’s what I’d always done. I was wrong.

Needless to say, our friendship was compromised after that, & I would encounter several run-ins & issues with her & management that led to more suspensions, write-ups, oral reprimands, union visits, & excessive FMLA use.

It was during a session in 2019 when my therapist told me that I was hypervigilant. Never hearing that word before, I immediately googled it…& agreed.

Hypervigilance is closely related to anxiety. It’s due to trauma – think PTSD. She said that I was on high alert, distrusting. Super sensitive to my surroundings, waiting for the other shoe to drop. Because, by this time, I was displaying health issues that seemed correlated to the job. I would get headaches & feel sick to my stomach as soon as I walked through the door. My mood was unpleasant. I no longer laughed & smiled with coworkers. I was an unhappy mess.

Now that I’ve left that job & am much happier, I noticed that I struggle with anxiety, period. In every day life. In relationships, romantic & otherwise. What has helped me is the Personal Development School. If you’re struggling with relationships in any area check out their website. I’m not an affiliate or anything, just an advocate for personal growth & wellness.


Published by phettehollins

www.phettehollins.com www.facebook.com/phephi www.facebook.com/phettehollins www.twitter.com/phettehollins

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