Because fear is such a common block, we’ve spent several lessons talking about how to recognize and overcome fear. But sometimes you stall out for other reasons. Sometimes you just completely run out of steam, and it has nothing to do with fear. That’s why over the next few lessons we’re going to examine some of the other reasons why you may lose your motivation… plus you’ll find out how to get it back.
When Depression Causes a Lack of Motivation
Sometimes when you have a hard week, you may experience “the blues” for a few days. During this time you may not feel like doing much. While this isn’t considered clinical depression, it is fairly normal to feel “down” every now and again. If it’s not something that’s happening on a regular basis, you don’t have to worry about it.
Now, in just a moment I’ll give you some tips for dealing with these “down” days. But first, let’s take a look at the signs that someone is clinically depressed. Here are some of the common symptoms…
- Lack of motivation. This is where you just don’t feel like doing anything… including the things you used to enjoy. For example, it may seem like a big chore to get ready to do something fun, like going out to see a movie.
- Lack of joy. Even when you’re doing something you used to enjoy doing, you don’t find much joy in it.
- Feeling worthless. Sometimes people who are depressed start feeling worthless. They may even have suicidal thoughts.
- Feeling guilty. Some people who are depressed tend to beat themselves up over past mistakes. They feel guilty. They can’t forgive themselves. Fixating on these sorts of thoughts can lead to feelings of worthlessness.
- Change in appetite. You may eat more or less than you usually do, and in turn this causes you to gain or lose weight.
- Change in sleeping patterns. You may have troubles sleeping. Or you may want to sleep all day.
- Anxiety. Some people with depression have feelings of anxiety, even to the point of having a panic attack.
If you have these signs of depression, see your doctor. This is a medical matter, and thus should be treated by a psychologist or a psychiatrist.
Now, let’s assume you’re not clinically depressed. What then do you do if you’re just having an off week? Here are some suggestions:
- Take some time off. Sometimes the reason you feel down, tired and even depressed is because need to relax, unwind and just forget about things for a while. So go ahead and enjoy a few days off without guilt.
- Go through your ritual. Let’s say you want to work on a book. Even if you don’t feel like it, go through the motions. This may include turning on your computer, putting on your favorite comfortable clothes, putting on your “writing glasses” and so on. Often, just going through the motions can get you excited about moving forward.
- Get some exercise. Go for a walk and get some fresh air. Do something vigorous to get your heart pumping. Sometimes when you feel down you just need to get some exercise to start feeling good again.That’s it for this time.
Next time you’ll find out what to do when you lose interest in your goals!