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mscosette
@mscosette

Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 19, 2018

Doing things to relieve depression... Motivation and ideas

Posted by @mscosette, Thu, Mar 22 8:22pm

Hi I just started with Mayo Clinic connect yesterday. I noticed a couple people commented on motivation. This is something that I definitely can relate to and would like to discuss with others.
I have struggled with depression since my teens I and now 57 I’ve been seeing a wonderful psychiatrist for many years, take depression meds, and have been in and out of therapy. My clinical depression is pretty well controlled.
However I am finding myself very lonely and vulnerable.
And I want to fight this. There are things I know I need to do that would help me. But I’m not doing them.
Basically I sleep, work, watch TV and overeat at times.
My goals right now are to exercise, do what I need to do to be around people more. Really anything rather than watching television all evening would be better for me.
What has worked for other people? I thought it would be helpful to have people that I can share these types of issues with.

REPLY

Hello @mscosette Nice to e-meet you here on Connect! I am Scott and I came to connect out of a need to battle the isolation caused by my role as a primary caregiver for my spouse for over 14 years. I found and loved Connect for a variety of reasons, but one was that I could connect (pun intended) at anytime! This helped me a lot knowing this avenue to share was always available!

The more I posted on Connect the more I realized there were many additional folks traveling the same path I was and it felt good to share with them. Plus I have found Connect to be an open, accepting, and listening community.

As I struggled I found two things, which helped me. One was I kept a running list of things I wanted to do. From the smallest (clean out the kitchen junk drawer) to clean the garage and from iron the clothes on the chair to write a note to an old friend. I pledged to do at least one thing on the list a day AND when marked it off, I never did so without adding something on the list, which I felt would be a fun thing to do as a reward of sorts. Soon my list was just as many fun things to do as 'chores'. I still do this!

The second was I taped up a quote at my desk. It says "Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying 'I will try again tomorrow'". It helps me remember my goals don't always need to be to move a mountain!

Courage, strength, and peace!

I find helpful, among other things, 1) having a great therapist, 2) exercise (enjoyable exercise, like walking in nature or even around the block, to start), and lots of social activity and a supportive network of people. Still working on it!

I just joined and I'd like to follow this group. But I don't see the word "follow" with the plus sign to click on. Where did I miss that?

@edithanne

I just joined and I'd like to follow this group. But I don't see the word "follow" with the plus sign to click on. Where did I miss that?

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Hi, @edithanne, and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. If you'd like to just follow this discussion (the one titled Doing things to relieve depression… Motivation and ideas), you are now subscribed and following it by virtue of posting in this discussion. If you'd like to follow the whole mental health group, you can do so here, https://connect.mayoclinic.org/group/mental-health (see bottom right of top gray-blue banner with the photo). If you would prefer to follow specific discussions, you can look at the list of discussions on that same page, click on one you're interested in, and then click on the blue-color "Following" in the gray-blue at the top that includes the initial post on that topic.

Would love to know more about you, @edithanne. Are you in treatment for depression at the moment?

I, too, have had MDD for years going back to when my mother died of Lou Gehrig's disease and the things that help me include walking walking walking and good nutrition and doing things I enjoy like playing and listening to music. And the worst thing is when I "hibernate," I HAVE to get out of the house and be with people and volunteering helps, you can't help someone and not feel better yourself, I've found and there are so many lonely seniors in nursing homes who would LOVE to get a visit from a volunteer. May we all have a complete recovery and soon and feel better! Exercise, Music, Volunteering are 3 biggies.

@IndianaScott

Hello @mscosette Nice to e-meet you here on Connect! I am Scott and I came to connect out of a need to battle the isolation caused by my role as a primary caregiver for my spouse for over 14 years. I found and loved Connect for a variety of reasons, but one was that I could connect (pun intended) at anytime! This helped me a lot knowing this avenue to share was always available!

The more I posted on Connect the more I realized there were many additional folks traveling the same path I was and it felt good to share with them. Plus I have found Connect to be an open, accepting, and listening community.

As I struggled I found two things, which helped me. One was I kept a running list of things I wanted to do. From the smallest (clean out the kitchen junk drawer) to clean the garage and from iron the clothes on the chair to write a note to an old friend. I pledged to do at least one thing on the list a day AND when marked it off, I never did so without adding something on the list, which I felt would be a fun thing to do as a reward of sorts. Soon my list was just as many fun things to do as 'chores'. I still do this!

The second was I taped up a quote at my desk. It says "Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying 'I will try again tomorrow'". It helps me remember my goals don't always need to be to move a mountain!

Courage, strength, and peace!

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Thankful our goals do not need to move mountains. I am a list person and I find satisfaction in crossing something off of my list-yes, a goal oriented person who struggles daily with major depression. I enjoy drawing and painting when I can push through the gray fog. the hardest thing is picking up the paint brush. Something I enjoy so much seems daunting and I would say this is the depression weighing me down. Hard to battle my way through even though I feel better when I do.
I am sad you are struggling with this illness too.

Lonely and vulnerable are uncomfortable. I am lonely because of not wanting to be vulnerable to others. The old push me, pull me thing. I am in too much physical pain to volunteer. I try to get motivated to do things and can not find a valid enough reason to try and accomplish anything-why bother?

@edithanne

I just joined and I'd like to follow this group. But I don't see the word "follow" with the plus sign to click on. Where did I miss that?

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@edithanne Hello Edith Anne:

I was just thinking about you and wondering how you are doing. I hope you are enjoying the spring weather. Did you find where you can "Follow" the group?

I would enjoy hearing from you.

Teresa

Best advise I’ve heard and need to keep doing is to get out of the house and connect and get exercise

Hi, @bykrchic — getting out of the house, connecting and exercising all sound like great tactics to help relieve some of the symptoms of depression.

If you feel comfortable sharing, @bykrchic, do you also have a diagnosis of depression? If so, how have these tactics helped you?

Hi Lisa: I am almost constantly depressed as a result of PTSD after being caught in a fire. This has led to agoraphobia and of course, depression. I am a senior and have trouble getting up from low chairs, which makes it very hard for me to go out and eat, because mostly those chairs are too low for me to get up and out of them, so I do not get out much and I am very, very lonely–thus the depression that I cannot seem to shake.

Hello @joanm65 and all. I am Scott and while I'm late to this discussion, this last comment struck a chord in me.

When I was in the last few years of my wife's caregiving I, too, was fighting depression. The isolation was especially difficult for me as I am a 'people person', had lost my job, and due to the demands of my wife's care, was as much of a shut-in as she. I was struggling to find a way to fight the depression that could fit into the tiny bits of open time I had.

I began to keep a 'To Do for Scott' list — not caregiving chores, but small things just for me. I picked four things to put on my initial list. They had to be something I could do without disturbing my wife, do in five minutes or less, and do from my home. If I remember correctly two of the four times on my first list were to call an old friend to say hi. Another was to toss out an old plant in my office, which had seen better days and clean the pot. The last was to look online for any information I might be able to find about an old uncle of mine, who I remembered fondly from when I was just a kid. I also committed to not letting the list go below four, so as I did one I would make myself think of something to add to the bottom of the list. Always easy, quick, and enjoyed by me.

This was a small thing, but it really helped me find some meaning for myself during some very challenging years. One fun outcome was that I began to develop a real interest in our family history, a lot of which can be done online these days and has morphed into having our first ever family tree.

Courage, strength, and peace!

@lisalucier

Hi, @bykrchic — getting out of the house, connecting and exercising all sound like great tactics to help relieve some of the symptoms of depression.

If you feel comfortable sharing, @bykrchic, do you also have a diagnosis of depression? If so, how have these tactics helped you?

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Yes I do and I take meds to help it all started I’m sure years ago but the big thing was I retired all of the sudden and I had estrangement issues with my son I felt like I lost my whole world as i knew it and I was so lonely I still am at times I know when I get up in the morning and I make myself get some exercise and I eat well and connect with the friends that i do have now I can feel happy again.i still struggle with this sickness still but I am trying now and can see the light mostly now so I’m thankful and grateful for that

@parus

Lonely and vulnerable are uncomfortable. I am lonely because of not wanting to be vulnerable to others. The old push me, pull me thing. I am in too much physical pain to volunteer. I try to get motivated to do things and can not find a valid enough reason to try and accomplish anything-why bother?

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@parus,
I just joined the Mental Health Group a few minutes ago. I am not 100% certain how to use the web page, but I do not see where anyone replied addressing your inability to get out and volunteer. I wanted to suggest that you try to find ways online.
How computer savvy are You?
Ask yourself whether you have skills or knowledge that can be shared. There may be some work you can do over the internet like word processing, internet research… just brainstorming here. For example, I am a graphic designer and get emails from a couple of groups who want something laid out like a brochure or Powerpoint presentation on a volunteer basis. It would be done "off-site", that is, from anyplace.
But if you figure out a way to volunteer without leaving the house: please let us know!

Oh, the shame of it all

@parus

Lonely and vulnerable are uncomfortable. I am lonely because of not wanting to be vulnerable to others. The old push me, pull me thing. I am in too much physical pain to volunteer. I try to get motivated to do things and can not find a valid enough reason to try and accomplish anything-why bother?

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I find the online stuff empowering. You may say it doesn't entail fresh air and exercise. "Do what you can", motivates me. Online work is my feel good medicine.

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