My depression has been really bad lately due to a recent loss and some medical problems. Mornings seem to be way worse for me than any other time of day. As soon as I wake up I notice that my body hurts and I’m also bombarded with sadness and negative thoughts about myself that make it very hard to get out of bed. Eventually I’m up and slowly getting ready for work. I get frustrated with myself for taking so long and for struggling to find my things in the mess I’ve let my place become. The frustration then leads to worse thoughts including suicidal ideation. Once I’m more awake I remember to be kind to myself, but I usually have places to be and naturally getting to that nice wakeful state can take hours! Work doesn’t even start very early (9am most days) yet I’ve been struggling to get there before 9:15.
On Friday I got so overwhelmed that I started disassociating or something after leaving for work. I’m not sure how I managed to get to the ER because I don’t remember much of the drive. I do remember feeling confused and I know that I drove myself. I’m not sure what all I said to staff but I ended up being admitted for suicidal intent and was transferred to inpatient psych. By Saturday afternoon I felt much better and less confused so they let me go home. I’m still feeling better overall, but this morning was again rough with the thoughts, depression, and now anxiety about having a repeat of Friday. Tomorrow I plan to go into work/at least talk to my boss right away to explain my absence Friday (not sure how much I want to share with the boss yet). Tuesday I’m thinking of taking a personal day off (and I also have an appt for therapy). I’m really worried about the morning struggle though… how can I motivate myself to get out of bed and to work on time without pushing myself too hard?
Is it possible to set your phone alarm to play some music that you really love, so that’s the first thing you hear when you wake up?
Are you getting sufficient rest, so that getting up doesn’t feel like so much of an effort? It also sounds as though you may have some physical health issues. Take good care of your body!
The therapy should offer an organized approach to address the issues that have led to your depression/anxiety.
You need to go with your instincts regarding how much to share with your boss, but I think it’s a good idea to provide as much reassurance as you can, as it will help keep your job secure.
Hi Friend, I have major depression and I find that having a to-do list and a routine really helps me. You could have a weekly calendar with one or two “cleaning” things to do each day to keep your place kept up (That’s what I do). I don’t work, but I think getting some of the things you need to do done the night before is a good idea. You can make your lunch, get your clothes ready and even shower. Or you can wake up earlier, so you have more time to do those things. I’m happy to hear that you have a therapy appointment and can hopefully work on figuring out what’s going on. You matter! ~Mystrose
Hi Friend and thank you for your post, I am very sorry for your recent loss and of course any medical problems you are dealing with. Learning to live with loss is hard enough without anything else piled on top. I am going to talk about your mornings and how hard it is and how I help myself getting up and facing the world, its not easy when you have pain and life just feels somewhat unbearable to wake up and have a load of jobs to do before you can leave the house. My suggestions would be to get your morning prepared in the evening, its something I do every evening as I am not good in the morning either, I have my clothes out ready, my lunch made, any bag im taking, phone charged etc, so all I have to do in the morning is have a coffee, take my pain relief, allow that to work then shower, dress and leave. I dont know if this is of any use to you. But it really is helpful to me and it truly is a way of being kind to yourself. Much Love Lisa. x
NewAtThis, it’s really hard to move and motivate when both your brain and your body are giving you trouble. And one definitely impacts the other. Depression increases pain, and pain increases depression. And the downward movement leaves you in a place where you don’t do what you need to effecitvely. And it sounds like Friday was really bad and it’s left you wondering if it will happen again. So how to break that cycle? I don’t know how you did it, but I’m relieved to know that you got yourself to the ER safely and that is right where you needed to be. You have therapy to go to - and that will help you develop those new means to do what you need to do daily. It will take a bit of time, but therapy can really help you work through what you are doing and thinking. Follow up with your doctor as far as your medical conditions go. Those are just practical steps in the big picture. It can be hard to organize yourself, but perhaps picking out clothes the night before, packing a lunch ahead, and setting the alarm a few minutes earlier to help you get moving would help. Set an alarm to leave for work 20 minutes sooner may help. Those are things I do to keep myself organized. I wish you well and please let us know how you are doing.
I totally get where you’re coming from. This has been an issue of mine as well for the past several months— if not almost a year. I’m not sure if you may be able to find certain overlapping circumstances.
I think my problem started when I started having relationship problems. Once things started souring for me and my partner, everything felt over. This situation technically lasted until December of 22, but it still dreaded on past that.
I was late coming into work every day. I’d hit snooze on my alarm, over and over and over again. I had no function, and no drive to really want to be up anyways. I told a crisis line that I didn’t “feel like even getting out of bed.” And I’ve always hated sleeping. My job sucked, I lost not only my relationship but also my deep friendship with my partner. I was told I’m going through apathy, and it’s a dangerous tango. Honestly? In my opinion, I contacted the crisis line and still do frequently for ideas. I’ll try to elaborate some, in hopes that I can get you some relaxation.
Make sure your environment is nice and snuggly for you. It’ll help keep you relaxed to sleep. A nice warm atmosphere, with how you would adore to fall asleep would definitely help do wonders. I have to have a little light and a video going for me, my dog all snuggled up to me, and a nice temperature with a good blanket. I found one night that I was extremely anxious until my dog was right up against me.
Going to therapy is a great first step for you, and your therapist would be a good tip to give several resources. Training yourself into mindfulness and journaling to help get these overwhelming feelings out may also do you some justice as well. I’m hoping some of this helps, I can help where need be.
Update: i met with my therapist today. She said Friday’s episode sounds like dissociation and we worked to identify the trigger. I’m still either depressed and very anxious or in a decent mood but detached from the hard feelings. I’ve been doing emdr for years with this therapist now for childhood trauma. We tried some emdr with how I’ve been feeling and I suddenly felt in two places at once, probably more dissociation. (It was strange bc usually I feel I’m in places I’ve been before, but this time the other place was just like the inside of a giant white box.) So we switched back to just talking and teased out that the “trigger” is likely just the whole miscarriage. My therapist encouraged me that we found different things she can help work on, like my fear of becoming a bad mother, the negative way I see my body, and the grief ofc. I feel marginally more hopeful.
I’ve still been super anxious. Especially in the morning but also all day long. My husband has been helping me wake up to my alarm and remember to get moving right away so I have a better chance of getting to work on time. I might hire somebody to come clean my place for me. My therapist thinks that would be worth it to decrease the stress of my surroundings. I’m not sure that my husband will be willing to spend the money for a cleaning service. I might give him a time limit to get things cleaned up for my sanity and then schedule somebody if it’s not clean enough by the end of the week or something. I also want to schedule some couples therapy sessions. We’ve done them before to help us communicate through my mental health struggles and keep a strong relationship. I convinced my husband to let me schedule with that previous therapist, but she won’t be available until mid-march. My husband doesn’t want to see someone new and thinks we’ll be good enough by then that extra therapy won’t be necessary. I’m not so sure.
Thanks for the support and ideas everyone. I’m struggling but still going one step at a time…
I appreciate you sharing your struggles. This is an area I’ve felt myself in many times. It’s encouraging to me to see that you are fighting for help and looking to find ways to improve your quality of life. That’s not easy especially when you feel like things that would seemingly be simple are overwhelming and caving in on you. I think you hit the nail on the head with your question of how do I motivate myself without pushing myself too hard? Having expectations to go from nothing to achieving everything won’t help. It takes time. For me I found giving myself something to look forward to to give myself purpose sets the day. Something as simple as getting up with the intent to make your bed can shift your morning into having purpose, therapeutic and shifting the narrative in your head from chaos to order. Once that becomes a routine than find another area that helps you feel in control of your surroundings whether it’s laying your clothes out the night before, making time to meditate, making yourself tea or coffee, reading etc. your purpose is to show up for yourself because you’re worth it and when you fall short, it’s ok, give yourself some grace because over time it’s progress not perfection.