Causes of feeling “empty inside” and how to deal with it?

What is chronic fatigue syndrome?

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a complex disease that likes to disguise itself as banal overwork, autumn-winter blues and lack of sleep.
It’s not surprising: the range of symptoms is so wide and plays out so differently for everyone that it can be extremely difficult to recognize this scourge. In scientific circles, chronic fatigue syndrome is also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis. Between 17 and 24 million people worldwide suffer from this difficult-to-pronounce disease. At the same time, women experience CFS on average 2-3 times more often than men.

There is no single generally known cause for CFS. The trigger for the disorder may be different for each person: for some it is an elementary flu, and for others it is a mental shock.

Diagnosing CFS is difficult even for doctors. Doctors may not recognize the symptoms, believing that they are dealing with manifestations of completely different disorders. Moreover, some doctors, unfortunately, tend to attribute this condition to laziness and unwillingness to be productive.

However, methods for diagnosing CFS may improve in the coming years. A study published in the journal Scientific Reports identified the presence of specific molecules in blood samples from people with CFS. However, there is currently no specific laboratory test to confirm this diagnosis.

How to understand that you are not just tired and need to see a doctor?

The list of potential symptoms of CFS is impressively diverse. Many of them, we repeat, may resemble ailments of a completely different nature, which makes the process of making a diagnosis a task of increased complexity.

In order for a doctor to confidently diagnose chronic fatigue syndrome, he must identify a set of the following symptoms.

1/ Extreme degree of fatigue

We are talking about a catastrophic lack of energy. Doctors officially recognize fatigue as pathological if a person experiences difficulty performing actions that seemed elementary and routine before the onset of CFS. With CFS, the feeling of fatigue often continues for 6 months or longer.

It is important to note that the term CFS does not apply to people who feel low energy or lack of motivation during certain periods of the workday: patients with CFS in the "Diagnosis" column cannot cope with fatigue for months. At the same time, sleep does not replenish energy properly, and in some particularly severe cases it can even worsen the situation.

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2/ Post-expression malaise

Another mandatory marker for CFS. When a person with this syndrome is exposed to too much physical or mental stress, they are guaranteed to experience worsening of the condition over the next few hours or days.

This can be figuratively compared to zeroing out the charging of a smartphone. When such perfectionists and workaholics overburden themselves with tasks, it can cause serious physical harm to their body. Exit? People with CFS should, by hook or by crook, avoid overexertion during the day.

3/ Sleep disorders

People with CFS have trouble sleeping - and even after a night's rest they wake up tired.

There are a number of such disorders: insomnia, when it is almost impossible to fall asleep; hypersomnia, which, on the contrary, is an “overdose” of sleep; apnea, in which a person stops breathing at night; shallow sleep - a disorder in which the deep sleep phase does not occur; fragmented sleep, when a person constantly falls asleep and wakes up; a phase shift in which it is impossible to fall asleep before sunrise; involuntary cramps in the legs or arms; nightmares; night sweats.

4/ Cognitive impairment

People with cognitive impairment experience difficulty thinking and memory problems. They may not remember recent conversations, forget appointments, or lose things. Even movies and books can become extremely difficult for such people to understand. In addition, they have difficulty remembering names or understanding simple directions or even written instructions.

5/ Pain

Almost all people with CFS experience some form of pain, ranging from migraines to cramps. People with CFS most often describe pain as general discomfort in the muscles and joints. In this case, pain may arise in one area and then migrate to another. With CFS, it is common to experience sensitivity to light, touch, heat, or cold.

False reasons for emptiness in the soul

Do you often feel empty inside? Discover the true cause of inner emptiness and determine what to do about it.

Many people feel empty inside, and most people have false beliefs about the occurrence of a state of emptiness. Common reasons why a person feels empty:

  1. The partner does not give the person enough attention and affection.
  2. There is no reliable partner for a fulfilling life.
  3. The work does not satisfy one’s ambitions, and at the end of the working day one feels as if one’s soul has been stripped away.
  4. The long-awaited success and rise up the career ladder does not come.
  5. There is not enough money for a comfortable life.
  6. Life is boring and uninteresting.
  7. There is not enough love, attention and approval from friends and relatives. Life is perceived as hopeless gray everyday life.
  8. There is an acute lack of sex, and how to fill internal turmoil seems quite realistic.

None of these situations are the real cause of inner emptiness. What does a person usually do to try to fill the emptiness within? A person begins to perform the following rituals:

  1. Consumption of large amounts of food (especially sweets), alcohol, cigarettes and drugs are also used, even if this was not wanted before.
  2. Detachment from the real world by immersing yourself in television or the Internet. Passion for gambling or shopping. The emptiness is filled at such moments, but this feeling is false.
  3. Trying to gain other people's attention or approval through inappropriate behavior.

There are many rituals that people begin to perform to try to get rid of the emptiness in their souls. They may work at a certain moment, but soon the emptiness will return anyway, and the person will again seek dependence in order to create the appearance of fullness in life and soul. The fact is that any method (be it eating sweets or shopping) only helps to eliminate some symptoms if emptiness has settled in the soul. The underlying cause of mental illness still remains “behind the scenes.”

How to fight the disease?

People with CFS tend to be very sensitive to chemicals, and any medications they take may have an adverse reaction. That is why, when prescribing drug therapy, it is extremely important to start treatment with minimal dosages to avoid side effects.

However, relying on medications alone in this case would be a mistake. The most important component of success in the fight against CFS remains a review of lifestyle.

Chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers must find a way to manage their activity levels and avoid high-impact activities whenever possible.

The simplest and most obvious lifestyle measures aimed at neutralizing CFS include the following:

  • make it a rule to enter all important things into the “Notes” section on your smartphone or write them down in a diary - your memory will thank you;
  • decide to go to a psychotherapist - together you can find emotional and psychological strategies to overcome the problem;
  • choose the best relaxation methods - for example, breathing exercises, meditation or massage may suit you;
  • Don't skip meals and avoid (or keep them to a minimum) stimulants like caffeine and alcohol;
  • add special nutritional supplements to your diet if you are deficient in certain vitamins or minerals. Let us remind you that your doctor should select them for you based on the results of a blood test and other types of diagnostics: incorrectly selected dietary supplements can worsen the situation with deficiency and absorption of nutrients.

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What else should you pay attention to in order to restore your vitality, to get tired less and rest more effectively?

Feeling empty: where does it come from and what to do with it

Perhaps many are familiar with the state when strength seems to disappear somewhere. For some it accompanies life, others experience it at certain moments, for example, next to a specific person, during certain activities. Olga Gordeeva, an expert in the field of relationships, author of the “Change of Course” project, talks about where vitality disappears.

General state

The state of “no strength” invariably indicates the presence of some problems. Maybe you haven’t been on vacation for a long time and are tired, experienced a difficult event, or suffered a serious illness. Depression and personal crises are also accompanied by a loss of strength, and often this is a signal that it is necessary to consult a specialist.

But it happens completely differently. You have good energy tone, but in some areas you suddenly feel empty. For example, in relationships. Where does all your energy suddenly go?

Internal struggle

It would seem that everything is going well: you don’t quarrel with your boyfriend, he takes care of you, your friends consider you a wonderful couple... but after communicating with him, you see that your vitality is at zero. And there is nothing to say, and there is nothing to accuse the person of.

If you come to your next date apathetic, you shouldn’t blame everything on work: after all, when you meet with your girlfriends after the same work, you are full of energy. The problem is in relationships.

Ask yourself where your energy is being spent. Usually this is an unexpressed conflict - with a partner or with oneself.

Anna, a 34-year-old woman who dreams of starting a family, came to me for a consultation. Sergei, her boyfriend, is a wealthy man and a wonderful suitor. And after dating she’s like a squeezed lemon. He is serious, his parents and girlfriends unanimously repeat: “Don’t miss it.” We look into it and find out that she likes him as a person, but as a man she is not at all attracted to him. She knows that Sergei is a worthy candidate for husband, but “her soul does not lie.” She persuades herself to be with him, and a huge amount of energy is spent on this internal struggle.

Sometimes the lack of strength is associated with a suppressed conflict between a man and a woman.

Vika and Egor are a wonderful couple; they have been living together for six months. We planned to get married, but suddenly we lost interest in sex, both were constantly tired and depressed. There is no reasonable explanation for this: Vika and Egor sincerely love each other. We begin to figure it out and find out that about a month ago they had a serious quarrel based on jealousy, but they hushed up the topic. Both act as if nothing happened, avoiding the topic of their exes. But mutual resentment remained.

Thus, unresolved and suppressed conflicts literally drain the strength from people. And pretending that everything is fine when you feel pain is not so easy: try running with a sore leg like healthy ones. Note that this apathy occurs if the conflict is suppressed. In a normal situation, conflict rather gives strength, albeit accompanied by negative experiences: fear, anger, malice. It takes a lot of energy to suppress all these feelings, which is why there is not enough energy for anything else.

What to do

If you are faced with a similar problem, try to figure out what you are suppressing. Maybe you need more attention from your man, but you don’t tell him about it, being content with little? Or do you swallow your grievances to preserve your relationship? Your first task is to identify this.

You can do this yourself or seek help from a specialist: deeply hidden experiences are not always easy to see.

How do you know that you have found the reason? You will suddenly notice that you have a lot of emotions - and strength. You are ready to scream and swear, you wash the dishes with frenzy, resentment, fear cover you headlong - powerful emotions indicate that “the dog has been rummaging around here.”

Another sign is an acute reaction to similar situations in other people. Your friend talks about a fleeting quarrel with her husband, and you suddenly want to cry. Maybe these are suppressed tears about yourself?

If you reach that conflict and those feelings that you suppress, look at the difficult situation, discuss it with someone who will understand you. Your task is to find a way out other than suppression. What if you can truly forgive him? Or do you need to stop convincing yourself to do things you don't like? Why don't you discuss the difficult situation directly with your man?

Having found a suitable solution, you will be surprised how much strength and energy will appear in you, how your life will shine with fresh colors.

Normalization of microflora

Many people suffering from CFS experience problems with their intestines. Restoring the balance of the body's microflora will strengthen the immune system - and therefore help defeat the disease. It is also important to remember that consuming large amounts of sugar (which is found in lemonades, packaged juices, and alcohol) and uncontrolled use of antibiotics (during self-medication) leads to excessive proliferation of Candida fungi, which also leads to disturbances in the intestinal microflora. Reducing the fungal population will not only help you get rid of chronic fatigue, but also get rid of chronic diseases such as sinusitis.

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