Russell The nice old bloke

Russell commenced bus driving following retirement and is a well-liked member of the team. Russell had a series of events on the bus over the past month involving abusive teenagers calling him “ old man” and general threatening behaviours of physical violence to him and others on the bus.

Russell has noticed increased heartbeat/pounding heart as he drives into the depot each day to start work. If Russell identifies male teenagers on approach to a bus stop, Russell develops chest pain, shortness of breath and increased sweating.

Russell is experiencing anxiety.

Anxiety is our body’s response to danger. It is normal. Anxiety is not just feeling stressed or worried, it is when these feelings don’t subside and are ongoing without any particular reason or cause. Anxiety can look different for everyone.

Anxiety Physical Symptoms

  • Pounding/racing heart
  • Dizziness and vertigo
  • Sweating
  • Muscle tension, tightness or clenching of the jaw
  • Trouble sleeping or insomnia.
  • Shortness of breath or feelings of suffocation or tightness across the chest

Anxiety Emotional Symptoms

  • Feelings of dread/apprehensive/powerless
  • Constant worry that something bad is going to happen
  • Feeling in danger
  • Difficulty concentrating, finding it hard to think.
  • Absentmindedness/memory problems
  • Irritability and edginess
  • Fear of losing control
  • Avoidance
  • Feelings of anger and disappointment

There are different types of anxiety, and everyone’s experience is a little different – to learn more about the types and treatments for anxiety, please click on our anxiety fact sheet.


Click on the links below to learn more on how you can seek help and support.

It sounds a bit like me – I AM Russell

It sounds like someone I know – I KNOW Russell

It sounds like someone in my team – I MANAGE Russell

Living with a mental health condition looks different for everyone.
Click on the profiles below to understand what experiencing mental health issues might look like in your workplace, and how to get help.