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Kritterszoo
@kritterszoo

Posts: 2
Joined: May 17, 2017

Depressed and Need Ideas for Motivation

Posted by @kritterszoo, May 17, 2017

I struggle with depression and have for all of my adult years. I am 41 now. I have a husband and two young children. My current struggle is getting motivated. I know that life would seem to feel better if I could motivate myself to do tasks that are good for me in the end, like getting exercise, doing household tasks, taking medications regularly, getting up early so I have enough time to get ready for work without rushing, etc. (I could go on and on.) What I’m looking for are ideas of tricking myself into doing healthy lifestyle changes – everyday tasks, so that they will become good habits to build on. Does anyone have tips and tricks that have worked for them?

REPLY

@kritterszoo Welcome to Mayo Connect, we are so glad that you have joined our online support group. We have many members who deal with depression and the motivation problems that go along with depression. First of all, I would like to invite you to join in a program created by Dr. Amit Sood, entitled Happiness a One Week Journey. Dr. Amit Sood, is a psychiatrist at Mayo. This is a free online program that addresses the issue of happiness. Here is what Dr. Sood says about this program.

Dear friends,

You and I face one common enemy – suffering. Pain, physical or emotional, when it becomes unbearable, is experienced as suffering. Pain is unavoidable, but suffering is optional. My goal is to help you find a path so you can bypass suffering in this life. One reward of traversing that journey is finding greater happiness.

Happiness is a habit. Some of us are innately happy. But most others have to choose. We often, however, don’t realize we have that choice. We also don’t know how to exercise that choice. As a result, we push happiness away. Let that not happen to you.

Join me, if you wish, to spend the next week of your life, choosing greater happiness. Each day, you’ll be guided to a practice that can make you happier. To enroll, you’ll need to register with your name and email address to connect with us for the next week. Select ‘Happiness: A One Week Journey,’ below for more information.

Take care.
Amit

Here is the website where you can sign up for this journey: http://stressfree.org/happiness/

In the meantime, keep sharing with us, as you are comfortable, about your experiences with depression and we will be a “listening ear.” Teresa

I, too, have suffered from major depression for most of my life and most of my family has, too. I believe it to be chemical and genetic. I was treated by my family doctor and placed on low doses of various antidepressants which did little to help, mainly to keep me from being suicidal. Last summer, I was in a serious auto accident which left me traumatized. I was forced to see a psychiatrist for PTSD, depression and anxiety who put me on 150 mg of Zoloft and 15 mg of Adderall. I also saw a psychologist twice a month for 10 months of cognitive therapy. I now have much more energy, stamina, focus and less depression. I was also diagnosed with ADHD which had gone undiagnosed since early childhood. Yesterday I worked in my yard hoeing, planting, weeding, raking and watering for two solid hours. I have not been able to do this for many, many years. I was not even tired. I guess sometimes something good can come from a trauma. I hope something good comes for you soon. Stay Strong.

@Gray

I, too, have suffered from major depression for most of my life and most of my family has, too. I believe it to be chemical and genetic. I was treated by my family doctor and placed on low doses of various antidepressants which did little to help, mainly to keep me from being suicidal. Last summer, I was in a serious auto accident which left me traumatized. I was forced to see a psychiatrist for PTSD, depression and anxiety who put me on 150 mg of Zoloft and 15 mg of Adderall. I also saw a psychologist twice a month for 10 months of cognitive therapy. I now have much more energy, stamina, focus and less depression. I was also diagnosed with ADHD which had gone undiagnosed since early childhood. Yesterday I worked in my yard hoeing, planting, weeding, raking and watering for two solid hours. I have not been able to do this for many, many years. I was not even tired. I guess sometimes something good can come from a trauma. I hope something good comes for you soon. Stay Strong.

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@Gray Thanks for sharing your experiences! The great thing about Mayo Connect is how we all learn from each other. Best wishes.
Teresa

@Gray

I, too, have suffered from major depression for most of my life and most of my family has, too. I believe it to be chemical and genetic. I was treated by my family doctor and placed on low doses of various antidepressants which did little to help, mainly to keep me from being suicidal. Last summer, I was in a serious auto accident which left me traumatized. I was forced to see a psychiatrist for PTSD, depression and anxiety who put me on 150 mg of Zoloft and 15 mg of Adderall. I also saw a psychologist twice a month for 10 months of cognitive therapy. I now have much more energy, stamina, focus and less depression. I was also diagnosed with ADHD which had gone undiagnosed since early childhood. Yesterday I worked in my yard hoeing, planting, weeding, raking and watering for two solid hours. I have not been able to do this for many, many years. I was not even tired. I guess sometimes something good can come from a trauma. I hope something good comes for you soon. Stay Strong.

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I am glad that you are able to be motivated to do outside tasks (and not get tired). 🙂 I am hoping that some day, I too will be able to find motivation to come easier. Right now I am working on small goals to do each day to build into routine, so the tasks will come naturally. Consistency is hard.

@Gray

I, too, have suffered from major depression for most of my life and most of my family has, too. I believe it to be chemical and genetic. I was treated by my family doctor and placed on low doses of various antidepressants which did little to help, mainly to keep me from being suicidal. Last summer, I was in a serious auto accident which left me traumatized. I was forced to see a psychiatrist for PTSD, depression and anxiety who put me on 150 mg of Zoloft and 15 mg of Adderall. I also saw a psychologist twice a month for 10 months of cognitive therapy. I now have much more energy, stamina, focus and less depression. I was also diagnosed with ADHD which had gone undiagnosed since early childhood. Yesterday I worked in my yard hoeing, planting, weeding, raking and watering for two solid hours. I have not been able to do this for many, many years. I was not even tired. I guess sometimes something good can come from a trauma. I hope something good comes for you soon. Stay Strong.

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Back when I was so depressed, I also suffered terrible fatigue and physical pain. Yes, depression is physically painful. I was unable to do even the smallest task. One way I would get a few things done was to break tasks down into small steps. If I needed to clean the bathroom, I would get out the cleaning supplies and put them on the vanity. I might then sit down to rest for awhile. Later I would go into the bathroom and clean the toilet. Then I might go into the kitchen and fix something to eat. Later I would go back into the bathroom and clean the lavatory and vanity. Much later I would clean the bathtub which I did with a long handled brush. It was too painful to bend over to do it. If I wanted to vacuum the living room, I would get out the vacuum and leave it in the middle of the room. It was difficult to ignore the vacuum in the middle of the room. Then in small increments I would vacuum small areas at a time. This was not greatly productive, but I was able to get a few things done. I think you are wise to do small things but it would be easier if you could get some significant help with your depression. That is the key. Blessings.

@kritterszoo Small goals are great! Counseling can be very helpful as well when you are dealing with long-term depression.
@Gray Thanks for the great examples of the “small step” approach. You have developed some great habits to keep yourself moving and motivated. Thanks again for sharing with us! Teresa

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