I’ve talked here a bit about my struggle with severe, chronic depression. In addition to this, I have some other health problems that lead to chronic fatigue that is at times nearly debilitating.
Like so many things with depression and it’s symptoms, it’s a vicious cycle. Depression and other health problems leave me drained of energy and unable to perform necessary tasks, and my inability to do these things leaves me feeling even more worthless.
I’ve been planning this post in my head for a while now, but have been procrastinating because it’s not a fun topic. It’s uncomfortable, embarrassing, and vulnerable. One of my biggest personal struggles is admitting the fact that depression and my health prevent me from serving my family in the way that I desire. Nobody can do it all, but I have health limitations that make my all even less than I’d like.
In the worst of my depression and fatigue symptoms, there were days when nothing got done. Days when there wasn’t even one thing in the day that I could look back and be proud of.
Just One Thing.
I’ve been in the dark pit of depression, and it can be debilitating. It drains you of energy and motivation, and the result is an even deeper feeling of worthlessness and self-loathing. It’s a vicious cycle, but you can break it.
During the worst of my depression symptoms, I determined to do just one thing. One productive thing each day. One thing that I could look back and be proud of at the end of the day. Sometimes it might be as simple as:
- take a shower
- pick up a room in the house
- cook dinner for your family
- clean up the kitchen
- wash the dishes
- play a game with your kids
I know to some of you that sounds ridiculous. But I also know that to some of you, it sounds hard to think of doing even just one thing. Give yourself some tough love and just do it. I promise you, it will help. Get up and be productive.
Tip: Keep a journal of these things. It will help you on the bad days to be able to look back on.
Maybe you’ve been down for a while and your to-do list is so daunting you don’t know where to start.
Forget about the to-do list.
Just do one thing.
And then at the end of the day, at the very least, you’ll have that one thing to hang on to. The trick about this is that sometimes, that’s all it takes to get you back on the right track. Sometimes that one thing leads to more things.
But even if it doesn’t, you can feel better at night knowing that you accomplished at least something.
Not Just For Depression
Maybe you don’t suffer from depression. Maybe for you it’s a physical illness or something else that drains your strength and motivation. Or maybe your goal is something else entirely. I think this concept can help you, regardless of your goal.
Maybe for you it’s not being productive that’s a problem. Maybe you need to focus on doing just one fun thing with your kids each day. Or just one fun thing for yourself.
Whatever it is, don’t underestimate the power of doing just one thing.
- 21 Days to a more disciplined life (baby steps)
- The Life-Changing Practice of Gratitude
- The Homemaker’s Quiet Time Journal
- Intentional Marriage (Doing just one thing for your marriage each day)
- Say Goodbye to Survival Mode
- Now is the time