I’m lazy on a good day. I am completely content relaxing on the couch with snacks and a good tv show all day long. When depression hits, I take laziness to a whole different level. I won’t just hang out on the couch; I’ll stay in bed all day. I’ll skip showering because standing up for that long feels like too much. I’ll skip schoolwork and cleaning and let it all pile up.
When I’m feeling depressed I struggle with staying motivated to do even the little things, and the big things, they aren’t even an option. But sometimes I manage to stay motivated even when depression adds an extra 10 pounds onto my shoulder, and here’s how.
First things first, GET OUT OF BED. Getting out of bed can sometimes be the hardest part. The easiest way for me to get out of bed is to sit up. When I first wake up, the easiest thing to do is roll over and smash my head back into the pillow. I don’t work in the mornings so that makes it even easier to do. If I sit up and stretch it helps with keeping my eyes open. Making the bed also helps, but if it doesn’t make you feel more productive and you prefer to keep your bed messy, all the power to you.
Have a slow morning
Nothing is better to me than having a nice, slow morning. Make a coffee, read a book, go on social media. I am not one to get up and go. Never have been, never will be. On days I’m feeling depressed, my slow mornings get a little slower. I read 2 chapters instead of one. I allow myself time outside to breathe in the air and I scroll as much as I feel like it. I find on days when my mental health isn’t in tip top shape, it’s better for me to be kind to myself. To allow myself that extra time, because I need it.
Plan a “light” day
being productive doesn’t have to mean time blocking every hour into your planner, always doing something, or not getting a moment to rest. Some days, being productive looks like reading a chapter of a text book and then taking a nap. On bad mental health days, I plan for a “light” day. Meaning, maybe in the morning I will clean the kitchen, and then relax for the next couple hours. When your mental energy is low, your physical energy is low. At least that’s how it is for me. Writing lists and planning creates an illusion of productivity, and that in itself can sometimes raise your spirits. On the other end of things, a big to do list can stress you out, so keep it simple.
Get Dressed/Dress comfy
I am an athleisure type of gal. You almost never catch me in jeans unless I’m at work. However, with that being said, getting dressed (even into sweats and a teeshirt) helps me feel like I’m ready for the day. I know a lot of people are different. If you feel the most ready to take on the day in slacks and a blouse, maybe you should try that. But I feel best in comfy clothes, so I make sure on bad days I am the comfiest I can be.
Start out with the things that make you feel the best
I know a lot of people suggest that you should start your to-do list by doing the things that you are dreading the most, to get them out of the way. However, I think differently. I believe you should start your to-do list with whatever makes you happiest. Because I mean, why not? On days that you aren’t feeling happy, should you really push yourself to do things that make you feel even worse at the very beginning of your day? I don’t think so.
Remember that there is always tomorrow
Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to do everything or be everything today. You do not need to check everything off of your to-do list to be accomplished. You do not need to be busy to be productive. Sometimes you need a day off. There is always tomorrow, and a lot of things can wait till then. I promise.
Take care of yourself