Lack of Motivation, Depression, and What to Do About It
There is no doubt about it — you are just plain lazy. It seems like you are constantly finding excuses to get out of work. You know what you need? You need to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and get moving. You need to quit feeling sorry for yourself and do something.
For you, the statements above will seem pretty familiar. People in your life have always made claims that you were lazy.
When you were younger, they blamed you any time homework didn’t get completed or your chores went undone. Now, people criticize you when the house is a mess or your quarterly reports are late at work.
Even worse, you have started thinking these people are right, and you labeling yourself as lazy.
What if isn’t laziness, though? What if it is depression?
Every day, millions of people meet the diagnostic criteria for major depressive disorder or another depressive disorder. They suffer from a list of symptoms that include much more than having a low mood.
There are 9 signs of depression that point towards the diagnosis, and there are two components that can contribute to low motivation: interest and energy.
The Interaction of Interest and Energy
People with depression tend to have less interest in activities and things they previously found pleasurable.
Some people are very interested in collecting comic books, for example. Every Wednesday, they visit their local shop to pick up the new releases, browse the store, make small talk with the staff, and head home to read their purchases.
Even if comic books are not your interest, you can see how this activity adds purpose, meaning, and happiness to someone’s life. It is a positive.
Depression will decrease the interest in this activity, leading to the person feeling less motivated to pick up their books for weeks or months on end. Without the positive support, depression worsens; but to people on the outside, the change in behavior presents as laziness.
The second component involved with motivation is energy level. Depression has the well-known ability to zap someone’s energy.
This may result in exaggerated sleeping patterns of too much or too little. While they are awake, they may feel fatigued or dazed.
This person would really want to head to the comic shop but would feel unable to muster the motivation to head out the door. The interest is there, but not the energy.
Left unchecked and untreated, depression will produce the worst-case scenario of lack of energy and lack of interest. When both are missing, it will be a struggle to do anything, whether you enjoy it or not.
Chores, work, and arduous tasks will feel impossible. People will call this laziness, but it is really depression.
Moving to Motivation
Throughout the worlds of mental health and depression, motivation is one of the most challenging aspects to recoup. Some people who lose their energy and interest may not be able to recover for some time.
If you or someone you love seems to be having problems gaining or regaining their motivation, seeking professional mental health treatment might be one of the best steps you can take. Being evaluated and treated by a psychiatrist can radically improve motivation and overall depression quickly.