One of the symptoms of any anxiety disorder is over-exhaustion. Having experienced it personally, I wish there could be a more accurate term to describe it. Exhaustion or over-exhaustion doesn’t quite do the feeling enough justice. It is not just being “tired”. It is this complete depletion of energy; feeling like you will literally collapse from fatigue. It is as if every ounce of your body has depleted its energy resources. The only thing that appeals to you is a soft bed where you can crash out and sleep. It feels as if you need to spend days trying to catch up on sleep. It is a type of extreme burnout in every sense of the word. Your body is completely consumed by the feeling of weariness and exhaustion. I could go on, but you get the point.
When you feel this exhausted and wiped out, there is not much that appeals to you. I am very active in spending my time attending talks and circles of knowledge. And I don’t like letting anything get in the way of this, but when this anxiety exhaustion hits me at its hardest, the picture of myself sitting and listening to someone talk is unbearable. I experienced this yesterday, and crashed out in the backseat of my car for about an hour. I felt a little rejuvenated after that I must say.
To make matters worse, this extreme exhaustion can be combined with insomnia. Yes, it is pretty crazy how it happens. In fact, I am writing this post in bed, as I am unable to fall asleep because of the stress symptoms keeping me awake and alert. This condition is pretty frustrating to deal with on a daily basis. On the one hand, there is this super exhaustion, but at the same time, when you are excited that you made it to bed early, you are wired and unable to slip into slumberland. And so the cycle continues…. Can’t sleep at night, and feeling like crashing out in the day.
A torture technique sometimes employed is to deprive a person of sleep by forcing them to stay awake no matter how tired they are. The lack of sleep becomes gruesome for the person. While of course not to that level, sometimes the sleep deprivation experienced with an anxiety disorder almost feels like that, to a lesser degree.