Depressed People Share Tips About How They Get Motivated to Get Things Done

When you’re really feeling the major effects of depression, it can be hard to even get out of bed in the morning. Or the afternoon.

And folks who are struggling can use all the help they can get, especially from people who have been in their position before and can relate to their problems.

Folks on AskReddit talked about how they get motivated when they’re feeling depressed.

1. Check it off.

“I find that check lists help me.

The act of writing them and getting to cross things off helps motivate me as well as hold me accountable without adding any anxiety or pressure.”

2. And…go!

“I turn on the kitchen timer for 20-25 minutes and get as much done as possible. The rule is that I have to keep working and can’t sit down.

It’s amazing how much you can get done. I also give myself very small tasks and cross them off the list when I do them.”

3. It helps.

“Antidepressants. It isn’t for everyone but it helped me numb the feeling of being overwhelmed with so much to do.

Also I made it a point to make everyday a ‘no-zero day’. No matter what I will do at least 1 minute or 1 tiny push of my goal every single day.”

4. Get moving.

“Personally I’ve noticed the hardest part is always just getting out of bed. So to make that easier I’ll at least move to sitting up for a while.

I keep my phone charger on the other side of the room so when it dies I HAVE to get up. Once I’m up it’s like “might as well do the thing”.”

5. Good job!

“Sometimes I’ll give myself a “reward” after accomplishing something. For example, “If I do the dishes then I can eat this doughnut/watch a TV show”.

Even substituting or doing part of something helps a lot. I really don’t have the motivation to go to the gym somedays, so I do a shorter home workout instead, or if I feel too overwhelmed to fold all my laundry, I just fold some of it.”

6. You want to do this.

“I trick myself into thinking I want to do a thing.

Same way you might hype up a dog before going for a walk, but telling myself “oooo, time for a shower! Are you excited or what?!? How amazing it’s shower time, hooraaay! Go get your towel! Get your towel!

That hot water’s gonna feel soooooo good, go get it! Go get the shower!””

7. Whatever works.

“This is going to sound like a joke but I’m being 100% serious.

I wait until I need to pee, and since I’m up and about I decide I might as well get it done before I go back and get comfortable doing whatever non-productive thing I was doing beforehand.

This doesn’t really work well for stuff like university work, but for general household tasks it works wonders.”

8. Set aside some time.

“I’ll literally block out times to cry.

Like if I have s**t to do but just can’t, I’ll say okay get this done, then give yourself 8 minutes to cry and recompose, then take on the next thing.”

9. Less judgment.

“Instead of sitting there and berating myself with “Why can’t I get up,” I ask myself, “When will I get up?”

It takes the judgment out of it and removes a little bit of the pressure.

I also try not to punish myself for having a bad day. Instead of sitting there in silence, I’ll turn on a podcast.”

10. Baby steps.

“Do one thing for five minutes.

Set a timer and work on a task for five minutes.

After the five minutes, if you feel like you can keep going, do it.

If you don’t, get back in bed. At least I did something for five minutes.

It makes me feel better and much more likely to get up and work on it more later.”

11. Prioritize.

“Since I don’t have much energy, I prioritize things.

The more important things like school, and cooking, and chores, I do when I have the most energy just to get it out of the way.

The little things like showering, and reading , and stuff like that, I usually do if I have energy. (I shower like every other day). I really try to focus on self care as well. I try to do one nice thing for myself once a week. I take my medicine. And sleep is a big one for me, I try to get 8+ hours of sleep per night.

I read self-help books a lot. Some days are worse than others but I really try to push through it .”

12. Be good to yourself.

“Be easier on yourself. Find a psychiatrist to assist in diagnosing any other potential mental health issues. Give medicine a try.

We don’t disparage others for needing glasses to read or wheelchairs to get around. Don’t feel bad about needing medication to function. Then get a psychologist to talk to about your struggles and allow them to give you suggestions as to how to cope.

Not only do I have depression, but I also have ADD and generalized anxiety disorder. This makes my cognitive functioning (ability to prioritize tasks) non existent. Most of the time my medications help, but with Covid lock downs, being constantly surrounded by my husband and kids, and without my usual alone time to recharge my emotional batteries, I’ve had a very difficult time with motivation to do anything.

Thankfully, my husband is very understanding and is as supportive as he himself can be. He constantly reminds me that this will pass, just like all my other dark times before, and that I need to be nicer to myself. Easier said than done, but he understands that too.”

How do you deal with your depression?

And how do you get motivated?

Talk to us in the comments. Thanks!