View Full Version : Bored/Anticipation = Anxiety

11-09-14, 09:21 PM
Argh. When I'm bored I get anxious, to the point of panic attacks. So difficult.

So I was in the car a lot this weekend because I was performing in far away places. Boyfriend was driving the car. I was practicing guitar in the back seat to have something to dooo, but then had to stop because my bandmate got a call from his girlfriend. They probably only talked for a half hour or maybe 20 minutes or so but I started going pretty nuts in that time. Couldn't really have a good conversation with boyfriend because then would be talking over band mate on the phone, couldn't play guitar cuz that was too loud, can't read cuz I get car sick and it was dark out. I was like getting sweaty and everything - I mean I've had so many panic attacks they've kind of become old news, I can manage them pretty well, so it definitely wasn't severe, but I felt noticeably better once my bandmate was off the phone and I could focus on the guitar again. So I think it was from boredom/dislike of being in the car.

The other thing I notice about cars and new places is that I kind of get panicky in anticipation of getting where I'm supposed to go. I do a lot of traveling because I'm a musician, and this doesn't happen all the time. But if it does it will be like in the last 20 minutes of the ride I will start getting sweaty and anxious and thoughts racing - I finally realized it has something to do with arriving at the destination, and once I get there and am out of the car I feel much better. But in the panicky moment I don't always realize why I'm feeling that way.

Also the emotions are so intense for me, but probably 99% of people I'm around won't understand why I get cranky or anxious to just park the car quickly once we've arrived so I can get out and see the scenery and get readjusted.

Anyways, there are other things like this. I really want to be able to play music more but I don't want to be difficult to deal with if I'm touring around with my band for the weekend. I know from watching my boyfriend's regular band that it's really important for everyone involved to be flexible.

Writing this stuff down helps me feel like things make more sense so this is therapeutic, but strategies or empathy would be greatly appreciated and helpful as well. :)

chaotic mind
11-14-14, 02:14 PM
This is exactly the same for me. When I described it to a psychiatrist they said that if I was so anxious, I must be afraid of something, since apparently anxiety=fear. Although I replied my biggest fear was boredom, that doesn't really capture it.
Its more of an urgency "to do" or to change what I'm doing. Like you say its an anticipation of the future that is just never satisfied. Its not anxiety about something bad in the future but impatience its not here yet. It is constantly there but can explode quickly with delays or hassles. Do you agree?

11-14-14, 03:53 PM
wow same with rides to performances! although i don't actually panic
i feel so nervous when we are almost there because it.s unfamiliar and there is all this standing around and vague chatting and finding where to put our stuff once we arrive.

Little Missy
11-14-14, 07:52 PM
Yup, yup, yup. Just thinking about it gets me anxious.

11-15-14, 03:41 AM
You know, Proust wrote a lot about these kind of transitions!
and i bet this kind of sensitivity carries over into your music.

Little Missy
11-15-14, 04:33 AM
You know, Proust wrote a lot about these kind of transitions!
and i bet this kind of sensitivity carries over into your music.

I believe it does. :)

11-17-14, 09:29 PM
Oh wow thanks for your replies ADDers :) It's immensely comforting to know that other people feel this way too.

chaotic mind - it's like there's a bit of excitement that's also getting mixed with feelings of anxiety about going somewhere new and not entirely knowing what's going to happen next. I think excitement and anxiety can be very similar feelings. And YES - delays and hassles making it explode, absolutely. And not always in a way that other people notice beyond me being cranky but I get all the racing thoughts and racing heartbeat and sweaty all over.

Ugh yeah Stef you know what I'm talking about exactly. The standing around and slight, inevitable, unorganization at the beginning of a gig...UGh! I'll have to check out Proust, I have never read any of his stuff.

As far as being sensitive...people in college said I was very expressive. :) lol

12-21-14, 01:24 AM
Well, I could relate to a lot of this. I have agoraphobia and when I'm in a driving trigger situation (alone at night, spooky empty streets) my problem is that my mind has to be attentive to the driving but not enough is happening, so it wanders onto thoughts of whatever life stresses are going on - and then the anxiety hits.

Or, like your situation with the boyfriend when he got the phone call, if I'm riding with someone on highways which are also scary to me, and the other person(s) is/are distracted and I'm starting to panic but can't get their attention I feel even more panicky. I remember one time I was in the back seat with a friend and her brother; we were on the highway, it was night, and we were going out into the country to see a comet in the sky. But first we had to be on the elevated interstate which I dreaded. I started to get panicky, and the two of them were chatting away in the front, and I felt so alone with my anxiety. For years after that time I couldn't ride in the back seat because of the feeling of being isolated with my fears.

If you find travel is starting to do this to you, based on my experiences I'd suggest getting some help if you think it might turn into agoraphobia, because it will be easier to nip in the bud than to let it go. A little extra anxiety medication or something could be just the ticket. Good luck!