Five Ways to Motivate Yourself When You Have Depression
If you have ever experienced depression, you know how scarce motivation can be when you are going through it. People who experience depression have a harder time finding the energy to do the simplest of tasks. Whether it be taking your dog for a walk, going to work, or even doing laundry, it can seem as though these common to-dos are too difficult to achieve.
My mental health disorder, Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, makes depression a constant in my life. Every few weeks I go through a depressive episode. Although I find it hard to even move from my bed at times, I make sure to push myself to do the things I have listed below. I find that pushing myself to do these things makes my depressive episodes less severe and helps me recover from them faster. I hope you find these strategies helpful as well.
#1. Prioritize self-care.
When motivation is low, it is important to prioritize the most essential tasks. Try your best not to skip on daily hygiene. This can be incredibly difficult when you are dealing with depression. Sometimes you just have to force yourself to shower, eat properly, or even brush your teeth. I find that after completing those self-care tasks I feel infinitely better.
#2. Create a to-do list.
When I am going through depression, I often need to create a to-do list just to remember basic tasks. Creating a to-do list has saved me on days when I have to work but am going through depression. The first task on my to-do list is always: “Breathe, you got this!”
#3. Surround yourself with your loved ones.
When you are going through depression, it can be instinctive to want to seclude yourself from others. I have found that this only makes my depression worse. I always make sure to reach out to a loved one or spend a few hours with a friend when I am going through depression.
#4. Give yourself extra care.
Have a nice candle lit bath, put on a face mask, paint your nails, or do a nice hair treatment. Pampering yourself through depression is very important. I have found that it helps me remember my self-worth.
#5. Celebrate what you could do.
At the end of the day, depression is an extremely difficult illness to manage. Celebrate any accomplishment you were able to make, even if it was just getting out of bed. Be kind to yourself and realize that you are doing the best you can.
Remember, if you ever have thoughts of harming yourself you can call the suicide prevention line (1-800-273-8255) or go to the nearest emergency room.
Fighting depression is not easy, but you are worth the fight. Always remember that.
You can do this!