How to Motivate Yourself When You are Depressed

How to Motivate Yourself When You are Depressed: 5 Tips

Do you lack the motivation to work or you’re wondering how you can motivate yourself in the absence of willpower? Then you may have already given more than enough space for depression in your heart. 

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, in 2020, adults in the United States had at least one major depression estimated at 21 million. And that is approximately 8.4 percent of American adults at the time.

But according to the World Health Organisation, people around the globe suffer from depression is estimated to be 280 million. While these figures point to the fact that depression is a rampant mental condition, it comes with different symptoms. 

Some of them include—

  • Lack of enthusiasm to get involved in activities you once considered exciting and fun
  • Inability to focus and achieve success in your daily tasks
  • Poor self-esteem and low self-confidence
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Abnormal eating habits, as a result of reduced appetite or increased need to eat

5 Tips to Motivate Yourself When You are Depressed


#1. Shrug off your negativity

A depressed person already has enough negativity to get rid of. So giving room for further negative thoughts ends in more frustration. That’s why you need to check and control what goes into your mind– the things you hear and watch.

And a sure way to avoid negativity in this present age is limiting the extent of your reading or listening to heartbreaking news. It could be on TV, social media, or even through physical interactions with people. Also, that could mean staying far from people whose presence often drains you mentally for one reason or another. 

#2. Be part of a support group

Heard of the saying, “a problem shared is half-solved”? 

That’s often true because some strength comes when two people join forces together. More reason finding and being part of a support group is paramount. Remember, this network of people should consist of those you’re comfortable with to share deep matters of the heart. 

#3. Rest Adequately 

Excess or little sleep can be a problem and, of course, impact your mood. But to combat depression, enough sleep of about eight hours (as recommended) is advisable. This is because the quality of sleep you have can impact how your body functions. And that, in turn, influences your effectiveness 24 hours a day. 

#4. Stretch yourself socialize

Depressed people indeed find it difficult to stay open and isolated. But in reality, socializing with positive people can help ease the anxiety that emanates from depression. Also, take your mind off yourself and look towards others and how you can meet their needs in the little way you can. 

Doing that can help your mood and boost your motivation. Meanwhile, beyond interacting with other positive individuals, you can also decide to volunteer for a good or charitable cause. 

#5. Live in the moment

Many people live in despair and regret because of the past, while others are anxious about the future. And the effect of living in other of these lanes can add more fuel to the case of one’s depression. But to find a balance between these two extremes, you must learn how to live in the moment by practicing gratitude. 

5 Reasons for Motivation at Work

Motivation for work performance has remained a subject worthy of research in the corporate and academic world. That’s because employees’ motivation influences their productivity level at the workplace and, of course, the bottom line of a corporate organization. 

With that said, the following are reasons account work an employee’s motivation for work performance: 

1. Sense of fulfillment 

You’ll agree that salary is a good consideration for wanting a job in a particular organization. But some people would settle for a job that pays them a relatively low salary. As long as such a job gives them a better and stronger sense of fulfillment. 

That’s to tell you that most employees whose job is connected to their purpose seem more motivated to work. Unlike people driven by the pay of their jobs and nothing more. I mean everyone wants to feel deep down inside that they’re contributing something valuable to the world. And many hope to achieve that through their jobs. 

2. Employee Recognition 

Aside from earning their basic salary, every worker’s motivation can shoot up when he realizes his input and hard work are duly appreciated. That’s also true with interpersonal relationships. By default, you naturally want to do more for someone or a friend who genuinely values you. 

When employers recognize their workers’ diligent work through word of mouth or other incentives tends to get them flattered. But beyond that, they want to do more– resulting in increased motivation to work. Note, some of the ways staff gets recognized for their loyal, productive contribution towards an organization’s success include: 

  • Promotion 
  • Salary increment
  • Bonuses 
  •  And other entitlements

3. Positive Work Culture

Another factor that stimulates motivation in an employee is the type of work environment in a company and its work culture. A positive work culture can boost your motivation as an employee of a firm. I mean, in a company that has a good work culture, you observe the following: 

  • Support for employees’ initiatives and innovation without micromanaging them
  • Use of technology
  • No Work Overload 
  • Support work-life balance

4. Opportunities for Career and Advancement

Gone are those days when employees stayed with a company more than they could tolerate. Especially if their work environment looks stale and void of opportunities to learn and develop professional skills. That’s true because many millennials would rather work in a company that can teach them valuable life and professional skills. Instead of settling for a company where growth isn’t feasible. 

How to overcome a lack of motivation at work

At times, you’re down, and it looks like your motivation is at a point– where you feel like giving up on your job. And probably, you’re wondering how you can stay motivated at work when you want to quit. 

  1. Don’t beat yourself 

As you know, first things first. To overcome a lack of motivation at work, you must be honest with yourself. And begin by telling yourself that it’s okay to feel demotivated. It happens sometimes. But it shouldn’t be why you should beat yourself all day and night in frustration. 

That takes us to the next point. 

2. Reconsider your motivation 

After you’ve acknowledged your lack of motivation, the next thing is to reexamine your motivation. You can do that by asking yourself, what is motivating? Is it internal or external? 

If you realize why all along has been external– what is referred to as extrinsic motivation, then it’s time to get a better motivation. For example, employees who work without a sense of purpose but for money may feel emptiness until they find a job that aligns with their purposes. 

And that’s why you should ensure you get into a career role you truly desire. And through which you can envision growth and career progression. 

3. Don’t Compare Yourself

“Don’t compare yourself to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about,” says Regina Brett. That’s true. You only know the journey. Fine, you’ve experienced lows and highs in your career path, but you must celebrate yourself and your little wins– and, of course, learn from your mistakes. 

4, Surround yourself with positive people

As already said, positive company culture can be a strong source of motivation for any employee to work. And having great minds as members of your team is a quality of work environment that is conducive. Everyone is on the lookout for the betterment and growth of the next person. 

Recall the acronym TEAM– Together Everyone Achieve More. 

5. Constantly keep your goals in perspective

It’s easy to feel demotivated at work when your willpower to press on gets affected. Yet, that’s the time you need to focus your thoughts more on your goals (broken into bits) than the challenges you’re facing. 

Yes, it’s time to apply mental toughness. But to learn how to engage your mental toughness and self-discipline, get and read this book. Meanwhile, when your goals get broken into pieces with actionable steps you can take daily, you feel less overwhelmed by them. 

A Final Thought: How to Motivate Yourself When You are Depressed

Whatever form of depression one might be through, whether acute or chronic, it can be traced to one single: loss of hope. And that usually thrives in the absence of gratitude. That’s why you should practice gratitude

It helps your motivation not to dwindle. In other words, trying to motivate yourself to work or study without gratitude may be somewhat difficult. 


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