Many people struggle with motivation problems, but in many cases, people tend to leave the problem at this stage. Motivation issues can arise for a number of reasons, and instead of simply saying that you struggle with motivation, it’s important for you to consider the actual cause of the problem.
One of the main reasons that people struggle with motivation problems is because they have issues with depression. In this article we’re going to discuss some of the differences between motivation problems and depression, so you can figure out how to best move forward with the issue.
Motivation vs. Depression
One of the main reasons that motivation and depression are so often related is because depression is known to lead to motivation problems, and vice versa. According to Tracy Smith, “a lack of motivation is a classic symptom of depression.” There are both psychological and biological reasons for this.
One thing to be aware of is the way that dopamine can influence our mental health. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, or brain chemical, that is responsible for leading to feelings of happiness, contentedness, and motivation. People with a lack of dopamine or problems processing dopamine often have trouble feeling happy and content (depression) and have problems with motivation.
However, there are lots of other things that can contribute to motivation problems. These can include:
- A bad diet. If you’re not getting the nutrients that you need to be healthy and energetic, then you will probably lack the motivation required to fulfill other secondary tasks. Taking care of your body should always be of utmost importance.
- Lack of exercise. The body is adaptable. People who exercise frequently and move their body a lot often have an easier time being motivated because it gives them more energy and accomplishment.
- Not having passion in life. People who work at jobs that they don’t enjoy or otherwise don’t have the ability to follow their passions often find that they lack motivation. The reason for this is simple – it’s hard to motivate yourself if you don’t like what you’re doing!
As you can see, motivation and depression go hand-in-hand. The most difficult thing for many people can be to determine whether they are struggling from energy-related motivation problems, or if they struggle with depression and need to be treated for that.
Am I depressed or just unmotivated?
If you can’t tell whether you’re depressed or just struggling with motivation problems, you can begin to find a solution by seeing if you have any of the symptoms of depression. Some of the most common symptoms of depression can include:
- Low energy, lethargy, and not taking place in activities that were previously enjoyed
- Feeling antisocial, losing connections with friends or missing out on social occasions
- Having issues with self-esteem and self-confidence
- Changes in thoughts, having darker thoughts than usual
- Changes in sleeping patterns, especially oversleeping
- Changes in eating habits (eating significantly more or significantly less)
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms in conjunction with a lack of motivation, then the most likely case is that you are struggling with depression and should seek professional help. As you work through your depression, you will find that you are better able to motivate yourself.
Whether or not you have depression, having motivation problems is a sure sign that you are in need of a lifestyle change. Make sure to find things that you are passionate about – even (and especially) if they are things that other people may find unfamiliar. Find the things you love doing, even if nobody else does.
Find the things that motivate you – don’t try to motivate yourself to do things that you don’t like. If you have depression, you should seek counsel with a professional.