Anxiety

I have been doing phone shops for a few months now. I cannot leave my house easily so phone shops are a requirement for me. I have social anxiety and chronic illness that I am in the middle of a flare. Until the beginning of the month, I was doing fine and took a short break from shopping. I attempted a few shops and I am getting so anxious on the phone that I am struggling to get through the shop even shops that I have done before! I am not doing well and I don't know how to get to where I was. I will accept a shop and then the day of the shop comes and I have to cancel because I am either having anxiety attacks or my chronic illness is wrecking havoc. I don't know what to do without destroying my reputation.

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@sbobgal wrote:

Can you talk to your physician?

My doctors know what is going on. I am taking medication and part of the problem is that I have started a new one this week. I had an appointment with my specialist last Monday and I am looking at possible surgery depending on how a test next month goes. It just stinks because I can get the research necessary for a shop done and be ready to go but then all of a sudden, I can't do it.
For other reasons, I tend to only take shops that I can pick up the day I'm going to do it.
An option for the short term until you get on top of your health
Take care.
I'm sorry you are going through this. This probably won't help but when I get anxious about a shop I think somebody has to do this shop and it may as well be me. Maybe think of it as an acting job.
The only thing you can reasonably do is to be honest with the schedulers. "I'm sorry but I can't complete the assignment. I am dealing with a medical issue.". I had to do it when I ended up in the hospital quite unexpectedly. I hope things improve for you.
All the best to you. Anxiety can be a b|±©[]. Especially, when pared with health issues. Take a few days off from shopping when the illness flares. Try mindfulness meditation before a call.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/20/2021 02:28AM by Pooch5210.
@jdoj wrote:

Maybe think of it as an acting job.
And remember that you don't need to be Meryl Streep or Daniel Day-Lewis, if you have the guidelines reasonably down pat you should be fine. "Smoothness" not a prerequisite when you're talking to someone who wants to make a sale ...

Bookgirl, I'm so sorry you're going through this. Is your phone anxiety related to the idea you might tip yourself off as a shopper? The way I look at it, if I stumble badly on an answer, the employee probably isn't thinking "shopper," they're thinking "dumb-ass," which is fine by me, guilty as charged, as long as I get paid. I'll never meet them anyway so ...

Wishing you the best in this difficult time.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/20/2021 07:38AM by KokoBWare.
Someone once said that for their stage fright they had to affirm, "Do it afraid." "Do it afraid!" Your rallying cry could be, "Do it anyway!" But would "it" be to schedule more work, rest, fun, reflection, or something else you might also want to do?

I don't know if you are feeling more of a general unease or a fear, but at least you have acknowledged how you feel. That is at least half the battle. You are at least half way there. You have come a long way. I celebrate it by being inspired. You know what you need and are wondering how incorporate this into your life, which might include paid work. Because of your thread, I now feel like I can do a better job of balancing work with the rest of my life. Thank you, and good luck. smiling smiley

Christmas is built upon a beautiful and intentional paradox; that the birth of the homeless should be celebrated in every home. - G. K. Chesterton

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I’ve noticed that everyone who is for abortion has already been born. - Ronald Reagan
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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/20/2021 01:56PM by Shop-et-al.
Bookgirl, I feel for you. No one who has not experienced a real anxiety attack can truly understand your dilemma. I do understand. In the midst of my last anxiety attack, my blood pressure (taken by a nurse) was 193/80. My normal blood pressure is 108/68! Anxiety/panic causes physical changes (mostly adverse!) to your body, and is 100% REAL.

Does the thought of giving up on phone shops cause greater anxiety, or less? Start there! Only you can answer that question.

Maybe set a goal? "Today, I will do ONE shop." Maybe find one that is similar to some you've already done?

But meanwhile, communicate with your schedulers, as suggested above. Schedulers, believe it or not, are human, too, and generally understand that health issues can prevent shops.

Best of luck to you.

Meanwhile, you might try some of the many on-line shops. They generally don't require interacting with a live human!
@ceasesmith wrote:

Bookgirl, I feel for you. No one who has not experienced a real anxiety attack can truly understand your dilemma. I do understand. In the midst of my last anxiety attack, my blood pressure (taken by a nurse) was 193/80. My normal blood pressure is 108/68! Anxiety/panic causes physical changes (mostly adverse!) to your body, and is 100% REAL.

Does the thought of giving up on phone shops cause greater anxiety, or less? Start there! Only you can answer that question.

Maybe set a goal? "Today, I will do ONE shop." Maybe find one that is similar to some you've already done?

But meanwhile, communicate with your schedulers, as suggested above. Schedulers, believe it or not, are human, too, and generally understand that health issues can prevent shops.

Best of luck to you.

Meanwhile, you might try some of the many on-line shops. They generally don't require interacting with a live human!

I haven't seen any online shops other than a credit rating one. Where can I start looking for online shops?

I was really proud of myself after I posted this yesterday because I got a shop done!
FWIW, I'm a long time shopper and get more anxiety from phone shops than in-person shops. I avoid them mostly. I don't know why, but I just get all nervous doing phone shops. Could it be the phone interaction is causing you the stress? Good luck and take a break if needed. Jump back in a little at a time.

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The more I learn about people...the more I like my dog..

Mark Twain
I am so sorry that you are having this experience, would it be possible to take a break and work on your health?

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Motivation increases when we assume large responsibilities with a short deadline.
Intelli-shop website has a place to click for web and phone shops. They currently have over 700. Go to the Job Board, and click on "web and phone shops".

Good luck.
Yep. I have the same problem. Then I realized that much of my anxiety is addressing the iceberg underneath of the water. Now, I am taking time to read about each MSO and seeking to learn how to make mystery shopping more of me providing mystery shopping/evaluator services and being able to write of transportation, apparel, and other requirements for the shops. IT really helps to put some distance between the MSO organization, the client, your process, and you.
Bookgirl,
I hope the ideas here are useful. I have no further ideas, other than to offer encouragement. Whatever your course of action is, just be yourself and persevere. Put one foot in front of the other, and if you fall, just keep getting up. My Best
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