I Have No Motivation To Do Anything: Am I Depressed?
Have you ever found yourself struggling to get through the day without crying? Do you feel constantly tired or upset? Do the things you used to enjoy bring you no fulfillment anymore?
If these symptoms sound familiar, you may be suffering with depression. However, many people have come to confuse depression with simply being unmotivated. If you've ever said to yourself: I have no motivation to do anything, then this doesn't necessarily mean you're suffering with depression, despite the symptoms being similar. Depression and a lack of motivation are two sides of the same coin, in a sense, but ones which can overlap without prior understanding of the differences between the two.
Depression or something else?
So, if you've arrived at the conclusion that you're feeling un-motivated to do anything, how do you know if it's related to depression or not?
Well, first you need to look at exactly what it is you don't want to do. Do you simply not want to take out the trash? Do you struggle to find the energy to head to the grocery store for a few items? Or is it a lack of motivation for more vital aspects of your day? Do you have no desire to get out of bed, or shower, or eat properly?
If it's the latter, then you're likely to be suffering with depression.
Depression can be caused by many different factors. The condition is usually only temporary and can always be treated. There isn't always a single factor which causes depression, which means pin-pointing this factor (or factors) can sometimes be difficult.
In general terms, depression can be categorized as a lack of desire to do anything, not just certain activities. Those suffering from depression want to go about their daily activities, but certain psychological factors keep them from summoning up the energy to do so. In contrast, a lack of motivation usually sees your motivation re-routed towards something less demanding, like food, drink or entertainment.
I have no motivation to do anything - what can I do?
A lack of motivation can be caused by factors unrelated to depression. Wrongly diagnosing yourself with depression can lead down an unhealthy path, so it's important to distinguish between the two before addressing your issues.
If you still possess the desire and the ability to get out of bed and go about your day but still feel lethargic, this is your lack of motivation coming into play. Motivation can be depleted by a number of factors, but the most common factor relates to a complete lack of interest in your daily activities.
If this is the case, it is wise to re-evaluate your circumstances. You should consider your social environment, your work and your hobbies. Find the things you enjoy doing and spend more time doing them. Instead of over-indulging on food or entertainment, take the steps to better yourself physically or mentally instead.
However, if you still find that the things you used to enjoy aren't providing you fulfilment anymore, then this may be depression setting in. If this is the case, it is wise to speak to a mental health professional regarding your state of mind. Differentiating between depression and a lack of motivation is only the first step - the next step is to take charge.