Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

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shm317
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Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by shm317 »

I need some advice. It appears I may have a job opportunity right down the street from my current job. Similar role, Fixed Income research analyst. The big differences are better pay, better job stability, very successful track record and process, and small satellite office (about 9 guys). This is vs my current employer where the office politics have gotten insane and leadership is abysmal, pay is declining, and frankly I’m losing interest in the work. Additionally I used to work with the guys where this new opportunity has arisen and they are generally sharp and friendly.

So here is the big twist. I have IBS which a couple years ago got real bad in part to work related stress. Through therapy, meditation, being more open about it, and just adjusting to it at my current workplace, it had calmed down. My boss has also been very understanding, which can be rare in my industry. However I have noticed it flaring up again as a direct result of this possible change. I know it’s a good opportunity financially, but unsure in terms of stress. It will be challenging but rewarding I believe. I’m just terrified of adjusting to a small, quiet office with an open format desk setup. I frequently have loud bloating etc that are embarrassing. The more this happens the worse the symptoms seem to get. I’ve seen doctors/therapists and taken measures to help (diet, therapy etc)....My question is does it seem like I’m letting fear hold me back? Or am I more keenly aware now of what is best for my health now? What would you do in this situation? Thanks! Please let me know if anything is unclear
ohai
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by ohai »

I don't think others will be as bothered by it as you are fearing. Also, it's not like they can condemn you later for having a medical condition.
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Raymond
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by Raymond »

Maybe your condition will improve once you get settled in the new office, since you're leaving the crappy situation.
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sport
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by sport »

shm317 wrote: Wed Jan 08, 2020 11:14 am This is vs my current employer where the office politics have gotten insane and leadership is abysmal, pay is declining, and frankly I’m losing interest in the work.
This would seem to answer your question. After a short period of adjustment, your stress level should be much lower.
rj342
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by rj342 »

Raymond wrote: Wed Jan 08, 2020 11:20 am Maybe your condition will improve once you get settled in the new office, since you're leaving the crappy situation.
Heh. I think the stress is from thinking about changing from the devil he/she knows, and not form what the new job will be.
Agree would expect their system to calm down, just have to get over the threshold.

P.S. I see what you did there. :mrgreen:
stoptothink
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by stoptothink »

I don't mean to make light of your health issue, I have an autoimmune disorder which causes almost constant digestive discomfort, but the one thing possibly stopping you from accepting (what sounds like) a way better opportunity is IBS?
NerdicSkier
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by NerdicSkier »

I have this condition, it's real. Often for me it's stress about IBS that gets my IBS flared up.
slyfox1357
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by slyfox1357 »

Understand your apprehension and perceived stress. You have to make the move, so try to rationalize the change and worst case scenario, which really isn't that bad. Personally I'd front-run this and discuss with your manager. It can only help, perception is almost always worse than reality, probably he/she is understanding and perhaps even you can work remotely a few days. Just a few thoughts.
fposte
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by fposte »

I have Crohn's, and that's factored into my career trajectory and decisions. However, this does seem like what you're hanging your fear of the unknown onto, because it's mostly about the social impact of the illness. Most people you sit near really aren't going to care. Have a quick matter-of-fact script ready for your first couple of days ("Sorry if there's a little extra noise or I leave the conversation quickly--I've got IBS") and people will take their cue from you. And remember that it really isn't just you: Everyone Poops.
Last edited by fposte on Wed Jan 08, 2020 3:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
fru-gal
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by fru-gal »

I just explain to people that I have IBS and what it is. Everyone has always been understanding.

I think if I were you, I might mention it to someone in the new group and see what response you get. Otherwise the new job possibility sounds excellent.
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celia
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by celia »

Does walking help? (no need to answer here) A walk right after eating may get you "moving" properly again. And it sounds like you need a new routine anyways.

As far as "open" offices, I assume they don't have "walls" between the employees. I've worked in a large "open" office (200? people) and small ones with 4 people with movable screens between each co-worker. Overall, I found the large open space to be more accommodating to talking to others (because you can see who is not currently working) although I'm sure I'm being a distraction to more people in that situation.
Topic Author
shm317
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by shm317 »

Thank you guys a bunch for the advice. It’s a constant mental battle because the physical symptoms are definitely real. Def agree that stress about the IBS makes it worse

Ha I should throw the trust your gut saying out the window here because when I think through it, it would be a better move for my career. But my gut goes haywire at the thought of it. I guess I’m dreading the whole process of settling down in a new environment (and small, open floor plan) after being at my current one so long (13 years). Harder to go unnoticed when my IBS issues act up which can be quite frequently. Easier to skip meetings if need be. Etc. But seems like it’s becoming too much of a crutch

Anyhow thanks for pushing me in direction of accepting. Part of the issue is it’s a couple month process before I’d go over (long story) which just leaves me a lot of time for my mind to wonder.
Texanbybirth
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by Texanbybirth »

IBS/IBD can become a crutch to indecision. (Ask me how I know.) You've really got to face the disease head on. I don't mean to "tough it out" or "be a man", but avail yourself of the resources that are out there. Sounds like diet helps you, but I bet having a regular companion (counselor, psych, whatever you want to call it) will really help. There are tried and true ways to keep your mind from wondering, also, which will probably go a long way to helping you in the transition.

I wish you all the best and hope this doesn't keep you from a seemingly better all-around situation! :beer (<- beer, tea, water, whatever is palatable at the moment)
“The strong cannot be brave. Only the weak can be brave; and yet again, in practice, only those who can be brave can be trusted, in time of doubt, to be strong.“ - GK Chesterton
Broken Man 1999
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by Broken Man 1999 »

It would seem that after you have settled into your new company your stress level will decrease, no?

So, after the initial adjustment you would seem to be better off.

Through my career in managing people, there really are very few people that would intentionally cause you stress.

If you desire to discuss your issue, I would be surprised if you received much other than understanding from your co-workers.

Make your move, and enjoy less stress! I'll bet your new co-workers will be an understanding group. After all, you already have positive history with some of the members of the new company.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven then I shall not go. " -Mark Twain
Katietsu
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by Katietsu »

I do not have IBS. I do feel great stress while significant decisions are pending. It is almost always a relief after A or B is made concrete. This can be try even if you made the less than optimal choice. Is it possible that your stress will be relieved after the decision is made even if that decision is to change jobs.
HomeStretch
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by HomeStretch »

Agree with the suggestion to simply tell new co-workers, if necessary, “I have IBS”. If you really want to make a job move, don’t let your IBS be the only reason for not making the move. Otherwise it likely will just get harder to make a move in the future.
Topic Author
shm317
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by shm317 »

fru-gal wrote: Wed Jan 08, 2020 3:17 pm I just explain to people that I have IBS and what it is. Everyone has always been understanding.

I think if I were you, I might mention it to someone in the new group and see what response you get. Otherwise the new job possibility sounds excellent.
That's ideally what I'd like to work up the courage to do. There's a discomfort (pain) aspect that would still remain, but would eliminate most of the social aspect I would hope
celia wrote: Wed Jan 08, 2020 3:19 pm Does walking help? (no need to answer here) A walk right after eating may get you "moving" properly again. And it sounds like you need a new routine anyways.

As far as "open" offices, I assume they don't have "walls" between the employees. I've worked in a large "open" office (200? people) and small ones with 4 people with movable screens between each co-worker. Overall, I found the large open space to be more accommodating to talking to others (because you can see who is not currently working) although I'm sure I'm being a distraction to more people in that situation.
Yes walking helps some. I have a number of tricks I've picked up over the years.... It's a small space but easy to talk to others.
Texanbybirth wrote: Wed Jan 08, 2020 3:30 pm IBS/IBD can become a crutch to indecision. (Ask me how I know.) You've really got to face the disease head on. I don't mean to "tough it out" or "be a man", but avail yourself of the resources that are out there. Sounds like diet helps you, but I bet having a regular companion (counselor, psych, whatever you want to call it) will really help. There are tried and true ways to keep your mind from wondering, also, which will probably go a long way to helping you in the transition.

I wish you all the best and hope this doesn't keep you from a seemingly better all-around situation! :beer (<- beer, tea, water, whatever is palatable at the moment)
Ha how do you know? Yes for sure, a lot of paralysis analysis with it. The past year or so I finally at least took the plunge to take some action with a lot of the suggestions you mention. Some do help for sure.
Katietsu wrote: Wed Jan 08, 2020 4:02 pm I do not have IBS. I do feel great stress while significant decisions are pending. It is almost always a relief after A or B is made concrete. This can be try even if you made the less than optimal choice. Is it possible that your stress will be relieved after the decision is made even if that decision is to change jobs.
Yes that will help some. But the biggest aggravater i think is just fearing the adjustment.
rich126
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by rich126 »

I've had stomach issues since I was a kid and it definitely affected what I wanted to do. You don't want to go somewhere that doesn't have a clean bathroom to use if you know you are going to need it. In those days I went through some tests but I got the feeling people thought it was something mental instead of physical.

Over the years I thought it was various things such as lactose intolerance but nothing really seemed to add up and I just figured out what foods were more likely to trigger my problem and avoided those when I needed to travel. Recently I had some tests and they finally figured what it was and that kind of made me happy since I knew it was something physical. The diet they recommended was largely stuff I already figured out over the last 40+ years. Medication was provided to get rid of an infection and reduce some symptoms although I'm not taking anything any longer. Stress certainly doesn't help although it is kind of hard to live stress free and a lot of stress is self inflicted.

I agree that starting a new job is stressful and it could be a trigger to more problems. In my case it is why I don't like to do a lot of flying. I've been to Europe a number of times for vacations but I really don't want to spend a flight in an aircraft's bathroom. It would have been nice to have lived w/o the issue and be able to just do whatever whenever I want. Instead when I am in business class and I have to say no to a sundae, chocolate chip cookies or other food it is annoying but I know it may be a bad idea. But I figure everyone has issues and you just got to do the best you can with it.

Have you brought this up with the new employer (sorry if I missed it)? If you need to take leave do they give you enough leave to take time off or work from home?

Good luck.
Zombies
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Re: Job change and possible resulting stress/IBS

Post by Zombies »

I’ve had stomach issues ever since college, and I always figured they were stress related.

I semi-retired recently, and my stress levels have gone to zero. Stomach issues? Gone. Other likely-stress induced problems (headaches, etc.)? Gone. It’s amazing how radically different my health feels. I thought that feeling might only last a few months, but I feel great every single day now, when previously two days in a row would constitute a “good week.”

Not everyone is in a position to walk away from a stressful position and land in something stress-free, but whatever you can do to get _closer_ to that situation I heavily recommend it.
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