Reading posts on the forum gave me the courage to reach out for help. Growing up, my dad taught me that “real men don’t talk about their feelings” and “prayer solves all problems”, and “there’s always someone better than you”. I took those lessons to heart and kept my problems to myself. These lessons lead me to bottle my problems until I would explode and lash out at the people who care about me the most. As a result I became emotionally distant from my immediate family and walked aimlessly through my early 20s. Last April I finally had enough and got professional help. After being prescribed anti depressants, I’m happy but unsure of what to do next. Whatever I’m passionate about, I lose motivation and quit after thinking that my hobbies will never amount to anything. I’ve done a lot of soul searching and still can’t stay motivated at work or on my hobbies. Is there anything different I can do that’ll help?
Thanks for sharing some of your story. It sounds like all those messages your Dad told.you growing up sunk down deep. No wonder you were angry and in pain.
I’m wondering if you’re afraid to fail? Does that resonate with you at all. Sometimes that’s the reason I don’t stay motivated. Reading what your Dad said, “There’s always someone better than you,” made me wonder…
Good for you going to get some help! It seems like it was helpful, at least to some extent. Some others will
respond to your post, and will have other thoughts for you.
I think you’re right about me being afraid to fail. The thought always lingers in my mind and affects my confidence and motivation. I’ve tried reading different books and looking for new methods to better myself. But at the end of the day, all I can do is my best and learn from my failures instead of expecting myself to fail.
Hello Friend, Welcome to the forum and thank you for trusting us with your story. I’m so sorry that your father taught you those things. To tell your child that there are others better than you is pretty bad. With depression comes anhedonia, it is the inability or reduced ability to feel pleasure. When a person suffers from anhedonia, they lose interest in the activities, hobbies, or experiences they used to love. It’s a very common symptom and there are videos on youtube about how to manage it and of course talk therapy would be the best. I hope you can find your happiness again. ~Mystrose
welcome to the heartsupport community! super thankful that you’re here and feel comfortable to be vulnerable here. my heart breaks for you as you were raised on such harmful rhetoric that carried over into your adulthood. i’m proud of you for finding the help you needed and deserved when you got professional help - that is such a huge and powerful step so thank you for taking it.
when it comes to your hobbies, i truly believe that any amount of time we put into those activities is either beneficial to relieve boredom, grow our mindsets, relieve stress, or even teach us new skills. would reframing how you see your hobbies help with how your motivation drives you? i’ll give you a personal example: i love puzzles. does completing a puzzle help me be better at my job or become a stronger human being? not directly BUT it does provide time to decompress to be better at the things above while also find small blessings in this hobby: i get joy from it, i get better at pattern recognition, strategic thinking, etc… any hobby has benefits so please feel free to share what yours are and we can brainstorm how it’s helping you on your own journey! thank you for being here on this forum and in our heartsupport community, my friend, i hope to hear an update soon.
Hi Friend, Welcome to HeartSupport, Thank you for posting here. I found your post so interesting as only yesterday I watched a Heartsupport Stream where one of our streamers talked about “Core Wounds” also known as “Core Beliefs” and that is what came to mind when I read your post, reading whe you were told growing up must have left you with deep routed beliefs that will make you have negative thoughts and I wonder if it is those that are cause you to lose motivation? I am not a medical person but as I say this is what came to mind and it is also something I too can relate too so I am going to give you the link to the stream that I watched, you may want to start at the second hour as that is when that section starts at 1hr in. I really hope what Nate says helps you. It certainly peaked my interest. I wish you all the best. Much Love Lisalovesfeathers. x
Moose1 welcome to the HeartSupport community. I’m glad you’re here. I’m so sorry to hear about what you were taught about what it means to be a man and to deal with life. Honestly, that doesn’t mesh with what I learned about what God says about us as people, regardless of who we are. I believe that we are all created to be in relationship with each other, not to be an island. While prayer can be very effective - it usually means that the answer will come in the form of help or information from other people. I’m glad that you have gotten professional help and are on medication. That’s a huge step and is important for healing. Can I ask if you are also seeing a counselor / therapist? If not, that might be a great next step in healing. Please don’t give up on hobbies and doing things you enjoy. They can be a big part of getting better and with time you may find that you will find enjoyment in them again. I wish you well, and I’m glad you are here. You are now part of the HS community - welcome.
I am sorry that you are struggling with this right now, though I am glad to read about the progress you’ve already made. Going from the mindset of don’t talk about it, to accepting that outside help is not only OK, but will actually help you, is a great stride.
If I may ask, are you also talking to a counselor or therapist, along aside your medication? If not, I super encourage you to. Medication is great to help balance out things, but usually isn’t the full solution. Talking with a professional is also key. Also, if you truly are having a hard time finding any motivation or enjoyment from work or hobbies, maybe talk to your doctor about your medication dosage? Just a thought. Apologies if this paragraph didn’t apply to ya.
I enjoy my hobbies, even though I am actually not great at quite a few of them. I do them because I enjoy them. They are things to do when I’m not working, having to put my efforts and energy into required tasks, etc. I don’t do them to be the best, or to show others how good I am. I do them for me, and my own pleasures. Feeling the pressure to ‘be the best’ at it seems like it turns it into a job, not a hobby. Though that’s easy to say, I understand it may not be the easiest mindset to take up after years of feeling like you did need to be the best at it for it to matter.
Enjoy what you do for you.
I want to be one of the first people to welcome you to the HeartSupport community. I am incredibly proud of you for posting on The Wall, so we can encourage & support you. Is there anything you can change up to help you find a spark of motivation, maybe a new hobby or find something that you have wanted to try out recently? Maybe find a book club, D&D group, or something that interests you that might help you change things up.
Life can be difficult to venture through, but I truly believe life can be exciting. Don’t be defined by your past & your dad’s teachings…discover new aspects of life. I can relate to this post so much because my dad wasn’t always the most encouraging person…but you have to grab hold of the opportunities to rise above those ideals that he taught you. Don’t be afraid to venture onto new paths & create your own way in this thing we call life.
I feel very similar in terms of keeping quiet about emotions. I think the world out there is starting to be more accepting of men talking about it. If you listen to podcasts at all, I strongly suggest The Imperfects. It’s a beautiful podcast and they delve into some interesting topics. Hearing peoples stories is inspiring and shows so much unity.
As far as feeling demotivated, do you feel like you don’t deserve to enjoy the hobbies or that if you’re not doing it to be productive in terms of it’s for a specific reason that doesn’t include your enjoyment, then you’re not allowed to?
One hobby that got me out of that slump was Lego. Because it took so much attention and time, I couldn’t stop. I just had to keep building and in the end it felt like I accomplished something. It helped me realise that I was enjoying it just for me too. Not everyone enjoys or understands the same hobbies and they tend to talk down on it or say it’s a waste of time, but how you choose to enjoy your free time to unwind or bring a bit of happiness to your life isn’t for them to tell you. Unless you decide that the activity you enjoy is harming others or yourself OR eating liquorice, then I discourage it.
I’d also like to comment to make sure you tell your dr about lack of motivation as sometimes it can be a side affect of medications. Sometimes it’s safe to ride it out and sometimes things need tweaking, but it’s not right for me to make that call for you or to say that it definitely is the case of what’s happening. Just a reminder to be aware and to make sure you keep discussion open with them. I thought my mood lows were normal because at least it was 1-3 months apart instead of every other day, but as it turns out, I just needed a change of medication.
Very proud of you for taking the steps you have to seek talking to a professional and start medication! Keep us updated
My favorite hobby is music. I enjoy playing guitar /bass and trying to improve my playing and writing ability. But when I’m practicing, I often lose focus and only play for short periods. I’ve tried structuring my practice sessions, but it only helped a little and I stopped playing for over a year.
Hi Taladien, I really appreciate your input. At the moment, I’m not seeing a counselor or therapist, but I’m highly considering seeing one now. I’m very competitive, so I want to be the best at what I do. But at the same time, I should be enjoying my hobbies instead of grinding just to be the best, since there wouldn’t be a point if I wasn’t enjoying what I do. I should celebrate the talent I have instead of thinking negatively about how I can be better.