There are many not-so-awesome things about living with depression. One of those not-so-awesome things is how it robs me of energy and motivation to get things done. And it is so dangerously good at convincing me to push things off because it has an ally in future me. And when these two team up the result is often me cursing them out, ‘damn you depression and damn you future me.’ Seriously, those guys can be such jerks.
The reason future me is used so well by my depression is because my depression lies to me and convinces me that it is okay if I am not productive now, it is okay if I don’t have energy right now, because future me will have the energy I need to get things done. Spoiler alert, the same depression that robs me of energy often robs future me of energy too.
And so I get into this rut of procrastination and unproductivity. And while measuring yourself based solely on your productivity can be a dangerous trap, one that should be avoided, not having any productivity because depression robbed you of your energy could open the door to depression staying around. Sometimes, just getting anything done is a good way to push back against depression.
And pushing back becomes easier once I am mindful of this tag-team act by depression and future me. I can say to myself, ‘I may not feel like it right now, and it might be easy to push it off until later, but I’m not going to want to get it done later either so I might as well do it now.’ And then when I do it, I get a bit more energy sometimes. Or I find it isn’t actually that bad. And this can all be used to reinforce more proactive productivity the next time this situation comes around. And hopefully, this is something you can use as well if procrastination is something you struggle with.
P.S. Spellcheck says that unproductivity is not a word, but I just made it a word and used it in a blog post so take that. I’d say inventing a new word is productive.