Depression Can Drain You Of Your Will To Live
Depression can drain you of a lot of things: motivation, self-esteem, focus, decisiveness. The list is long (Why Live When You Feel Like Dying?). The very worst of these is when depression drains you of your will to live. I know. I've been there.
Depression Drained My Will to Live
I think about that day a lot, less than two years ago, when I almost killed myself. I sometimes wonder if I would have gone through with it. How much lower would I have needed to be? I was pretty low - holding the lethal pills in my hand. I felt so desperate, so sad, so lost and alone.
At the very lowest moment, I had one, very brief moment of clarity in which I asked myself to think about just one thing that I was looking forward to.
And then I lived.
The 'Just One Thing' That Stopped Depression From Draining My Will To Live (And More)
From that moment on, that technique of finding just one thing has become my saving grace. When I lack motivation, I tell myself to get up and do just one thing, like vacuum the rug. When my self-esteem is low, I remind myself about just one thing that I am good at, like writing. When my focus is blurred, I pick just one thing to concentrate on, like reading. When my depression threatened to swallow me whole, when I nearly took my own life, I thought of just one thing to stay my hand: my daughter's wedding.
Can Something So Small Stop Depression From Draining Your Will To Live?
It is a very rudimentary, yet powerful, technique I learned during cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). People scoff at psychotherapy, calling it ineffective. When partnered with other treatments, psychotherapy and CBT can save your life.
Today, my particular battle is with this unbelievably long, brutally cold and snowy winter (What is Seasonal Affective Disorder, Seasonal Depression?). I'm trying very hard to think about just one thing I appreciate about the winter besides my love for wearing warm, cozy sweaters; the just one thing I appreciate about the winter is that is always ends (eventually), and it always ushers in the spring!
When depression is draining you of you will to live, of all those things that make you who you are, try, if you can, to think about just one thing that can help change your state of mind. Try it. It works!
Scott, L. (2014, March 16). Depression Can Drain You Of Your Will To Live, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2021, July 24 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/copingwithdepression/2014/03/depression-is-draining
Author: Liana M Scott
Hello, Mike, I'm Jennifer, the current co-author of the Coping With Depression Blog. I know that things are difficult for you right now, but you still have so much potential. From what you wrote about your past accomplishments in education, you have the ability and the intellect to achieve success. Depression contorts our view of ourselves and makes us feel hopeless and worthless. I know how difficult it is, but you can begin to take steps to get your life back on track. If you haven't already sought professional help, then I recommend you do that first. The right treatment can make all the difference. Don't give up on life. There is so much good left for you. Also, I understand the inability to connect with others; I have been through that myself. Medication and therapy have helped me work through that, which has proven both beneficial and important. You need the support of and connection to others on this path to healing. Finally, you are not a loser. You are a person who is battling depression, and you deserve to get the medical treatment you need. Then you can begin to see the beauty that life holds for you.
Findibg those small things to motivate you step by step is great and all, but it it can also make you feel more like an empty shell seeking for something to fill that numb void, we were forced into these lives that we did not choose after all. Few years back i wanted to take my life same as many others that feel the same, but after about an hour kneeling on thr floor with a gun to my head, i though that maybe there is a happy version of me in the future that has found a something to fill this dark hole in my chest, and the only thing sitting between these versions of me is time. I spent the next few years of my life trying to wait out these hollow feelings, but ultinately this just left me numb and now incapable of communicating these feelings with other people.
Ultimately i am trapped in a dark cell wherein im both the afraid prisoner and the cruel warden.
... i guess 8 years wasnt enough... i need to wait more, till one day i can find that happiness that can make these years worth it. I have given up being suicidal and decided to be stubborn instead, no matter how much time i waste. This intovert will just have to sleep it off 1 night at a time.
I understand where you are coming from, Mitch. You are not alone in your feelings. The afraid prisoner and the cruel warden...very well put.
I know how you feel, man. The main reason I don't self destruct is because of my dad. Logic help when once he's gone, I don't that I wouldn't be right behind him.
You are beautiful, you are enough and you are loved, never forget that..
I had the odd thought today, as I felt, to my core: "I have nothing to lose. Really, I could die right now and be okay with it." The subsequent thought: Well, if it's no great sacrifice, time to be a superhero. Risk everything doing something good, something that matters.
I guess I'm probably not going to pick out anything in spandex (I'm already wearing yoga pants, after all), but when I feel like I've got nothing to lose, maybe that's a potential position of strength.
That's a great way to put a positive perspective on it. You can find courage that you never even knew you had.
My opinion is like: Continue living so you can change things. There are plenty of reasons to live on and love and try. If there is pain or if there are problems, as long as we live, we can fix it. Taking your life will hurt others whether you recognize it or not. If you've held on for this long, then you have enough strength. Seek help and cast out the demon of depression. If you take your life you can lose things that you don't know about yet. You can not meet people you need. You cannot meet the people that will need you in the future that can make your life beautiful and vice versa. Good luck everybody and hold on. [Edited]
I just feel they have all hurt me already and it would just be explained away like every other death as a oh well you know he was depressed and suddenly everyone will have amnesia as to just why this all happened. When you've spent your life neglected by your family and peers it's a bleek existence
That is how i am feeling right now.
This is so good...Thank you!
Yes i believe that. Many times I want to end my life. I am so sick and tired of living in the dark place. I want my emotional pain to end. Yes, when I think about singing because it is my passion to sing one day in front of a big audience. To be recognize with such talent.
I will always keep that in mind. When the whispers of suicide knocks on me again.
Damn son, you really are good at writting. Thanks for this great article.
My wife has had m.e/chronic fatigue syndrome for 3 years now, lately she told me that she reserves all her energy for our daughter, and that she has nothing left for me. I dont have any friends and my family live overseas. I have chronic back pain and now can't go back to work. Without any income now, we are having to sell our house. I really miss initimisy, even a cuddle would be nice. I love my wife and daughter. I am trying to live. I should be grateful. I guess I'm venting because I have no one to talk too. Honestly, I don't want to live any more, but I can't give up for my daughter. [moderated] Sorry, I'm such a mess. But I have to endure. I feel for all of you. Best of luck. Does anyone else feel like earth is hell and we are here to be punished?
I'm so sorry you're in that position. It sounds very hard. I know what it's like to feel like life is hell and I know what it's like to feel like you're being punished. But please realize, this isn't true. It's a lie your brain is telling you. Please reach out and please get help. It can get better.
- Natasha Tracy
Thank you Natasha, you are absolutely right. Wouldn't it be nice to have a moderator in your head which only let the positive thoughts through. I guess that's what I have to learn to do.
I agree with Peter, I'm not suicidal but I am exhausted and overwhelmed by a life that's just too hard. There aren't many nights that my last waking thought isn't the hope that I don't wake up and have to do it all again.
I feel like nobody cares and that I'm faking it. I've lost a daughter, I've been deployed, I lost both grandfather's in one year, I was hollered at a lot growing up and started fist fighting my stepdad at age 8, I got beaten until almost dead in my second marriage, he put a gun to my head and shot a round next to my head, I've tried asking for help, I've gone to the VA, I've gone to counseling, I've taken pills prescribed, talked to a grieving counselor, I almost died because I attempted suicide, I've been in the hospital, it's all the same textbook stuff, everyone looks at me like I'm a monster, I don't fit in anywhere, people talk over me or they ignore me, I'm angry all the time, when I'm alone I have punched holes in the wall. I'm ready to just go to sleep, I'm tired of this life so tired of it, I force myself to do every day things and I fake it good, I just hate everything about this world and I'm better off dead.
I'm so sorry you have experienced so many hard things all at once. That sounds really, really tough.
But I want to tell you not to give up. Healing is a process that takes time. And if you feel like the professionals you've talked to so far haven't helped, then get referrals to others. Healing is possible.
You can also look for resources and useful hotlines here: https://www.healthyplace.com/other-info/resources/mental-health-hotline-numbers-and-refer…
Please call one of them. Don't give up. It does get better.
- Natasha Tracy
I have been through counselling, antidepressants and nothing seems to be working. I pretend I am OK and things are helping out of embarrassment and not wanting my privacy invaded anymore. I have a beautiful 18 month old daughter but I can't enjoy her because I'm so sad and hurt inside. I have had a difficult time through my life, my father died suddenly when I was 9, I was raped at university, things spiralled down then. I thought I had everything together after coming out of post natal depression with a new baby and a husband who loved me. That was all false hope, my mother got diagnosed with a terminal illness, I found messages between my husband and other women on his phone. He has reassured me it was nothing. My mother has been dead for a year, I don't trust my husband. I feel like I have nothing but hurt left.
I can relate to a lot here. I've been through post natal psychosis, anti-depressants, psychotherapists etc. I feel caught in between my husband's culture and my culture so it feels unnatural bringing up the kids. I keep worrying about the future without being able to appreciate the present. When I feel ok, I load a lot on to my plate and then I crash... right now I'm at that limbo stage, not feeling like myself, not wanting to carry on. I worry what people who see the bipolar aspects of my personality think...I can't be trusted! Just struggling through another day.
Hi its been a year since i found my dad commit suside and i dont now how too deal whith my self any more where do i begin feel hope less
You begin here, commenting on an article about what you're fighting. You continue by reading other articles, by looking elsewhere for answers you can't find inside your own mind. You reach out to professional counseling if you want, you reach out to anyone who will support you, and you keep moving forward. The hopelessness won't last forever, and the healing will start eventually. We're here for you.
Author, Coping with Depression Blog
Thanks i now that he was sick and it was fathers day so i was down but i have to go on and be strong for my mom and my kids. But i now i cant keep the bad feelings. Talking helps thank u
Hi Juan, I have a little girl who I love more than anything and yet I still feel suicididal. Although your dad couldn't live in this world I'm sure he loved you more than anything.
Life sucks and then you die. I am not suicidal, but I have no will to live, life has just completely drained me. Too many struggles, just plain tired.
This is my first time on a blog. I feel like I am in a vortex of water swirling, swirling, swirling and slowing sinking. I can't take this depression anymore. I thought i won the fight.
I have come across this page looking for something to help me from taking my life. I was blissfully happy until 7 months ago my youngest child started having problems with his walking, and after many months of investigations and hundreds of tests the conclusion is it is some genetic condition for which there is no cure at present, and he will most likely become disabled. The thought of watching my baby deteriorate like that is do unbearable that I do not want to carry on living. I have lost interest in everything, including my other child and husband, and my mind is one dark place. I don't know how to carry on. I will never be happy again so there is no point in carrying on. I know o have to be there for my children, but I can't live with this pain and misery for the rest of my life.
I am deeply saddened to hear of your child's diagnosis. I understand that it feels impossible to live with the sorrow that you feel right now, and I think those feelings are valid. Every moment you spend moving forward with your family will bring light back into your life. I encourage you to seek professional help in coping with the challenges you're facing, and fight for yourself and for your family.
Author, Coping with Depression Blog
Don't give up. There is a lot of things doctors claim to be because of genetics. Cancer is an example of this, cancer seems to only take place in subjects with week immune systems, then the doctors give you chemo which actually breaks the immune system down further. My point is you should look into the diet of your child. Remove unhealthy food and drinks, let him drink water and make sure he gets all the protein he needs (1 gram protein per pound of bodyweight), also make sure he gets in all his vitamins and minerals because they also assist in growth. You can also attempt to see how intermittent fasting affects him, intermittent fasting is proven to increase natural growth hormone by up to 2000% in males. Growth hormone is one of the hormones that help with the growth of the entire body.
There are many ingredients in the foods we eat that cause problems such as cancer, I am confident that these ingredients can cause other problems as well such as the problem you describe. Although it is not proven yet. But my point is to take what the doctors say with a grain of salt because they treat symptoms and not problems. Only after putting your child and a vegan diet with sufficient amounts of protein for at least 2 years, can you say that you did all you could. You should also teach him to perform exercises such as bodyweight calve raises and bodyweight squats. He will not need to do more than 10 reps for 3 sets of each of those exercises. This will strengthen his leg muscles. Pace him though, if he experience pain when squatting deep allow him to reduce the range of motion (in other words to not go that low). He should do these exercises 3 times a week with rest day in between (for example let him do it on mondays, wednesdays and fridays).
PS you can give him a multivitamin for the vitamin needs, I recommend bio-nutrient's multi vitamin.
Give his body what it needs and let it do the rest.
Exercising will also make you happy, perhaps this should be the one thing that you stay alive for. You can use the same diet recommendations I gave you for your son.
I wish you and your son the best.
Its sad but at the same time relieving to know im not alone. I just feel sp worthless and cant stop the thoughts that it would be better without me here. I used to drink to mask feelings which ended me with a dui and crash that led me to trouble and now here i am still feeling the same way with no masking and wondering why i am here. I cant seem to get a grip. I try to stay positive and to kill the negative thoughts but they return everytime.
I Suffer from Depression, Mikaela. It started late last year. At first, It terrified me, I felt the weight of the world on my shoulders while ALL the emotions and feelings were drained out of me. I started losing interest in EVERYTHING that used to make me happy. Friends, Family, Music, Everything. Happiness was just absent, I found everything pointless cos it doesn't make me feel any better, all I feel is sadness. I find it pointless to get out of bed in the Morning. I have NO REASON to smile, I look foward to nothing. But I had surrounded myself with so many friends already, I felt so disconnected from them. Everything we used to do together was just dull and grey for me. I see them smile and laugh but to me it's all the same, just sadness throughout my day.
I don't want anyone to feel like I'm abandoning them or I'm distancing myself from them so I fake it, I put on a smile everyday, almost a mask, I drag myself out of bed and do my daily routines although it's hard, almost impossible, in fact cos I feel so empty. I go to school, I go out, I hang out with friends, everyday i constantly drag myself to do things cos it's what normal people do and it's what Society expects from me but I have no interest in any of it, What I really want is to be alone, crying on my bed as I do every night cos I can't sleep. I just lay there and surrender myself to my thoughts.
I feel dead, Mikaela. I'm totally disconnected from the rest of the world emotionally. My body is the only attachment I still have in the world. I can't be happy, I can't be angry, I can't feel anything, I don't find anything funny anymore. I'm just dragging my body along as hours pass.
I have so many people looking up to me, Mikaela. I have people who love me, Friends and family who care about me, A girlfriend who adores me yet I can't receive what they're giving, nor can I give it back. These people see me as a normal person yet I feel like a mere corpse. I don't want to hurt anybody, I don't want them to see what im going through. I find it a lot easier to stay in bed all day, reading articles about other people suffering from this darkness, At least I can relate with them. At Least they know how it is for me.
Depression, I've learned, isn't caused by sadness or being alone. In Varsity, I have people who think we're friends, best friends even, yet I barely remember their names. I'm doing great academically, In fact, when I'm in class is the only time I see colour. Otherwise my entire life is grey and my comfort zone is in utter solitude, painted black with a pool of tears.
I love my girlfriend so much. I've told her about it but she's overly optimistic about it. She tells me it'll all be fine, telling me I must pray, Her optimism keeps me alive really but it's only limited in facilitating my survival.
I like to think I have a strong relationship with God, I pray twiice a day and I am unashamed about my faith in HiM but... I see no change, Mikaela. I've given HiM all I can, God knows my intentions and my purpose in this world but I can't even find a purpose for the day. I'm drifting deeper and deeper out of the real world. Too often for my own good, I think I've reached my time-span In this world, seeing as I'm so disconnected from it, I feel like emotionally i died sometime last year but God forgot to take the life out of my body, it comes with no saying that I always think about doing it myself instead.
I'm sorry to bother you with my shit. But my story has to be told.
And please talk to me as a normal teenager. No amount of asking me to pray, go to church or strengthen my relationship with God will make a difference cos trust me, I've done all the above to the best of my abilities but I'm still right where I started.
I have been the hospital with a mini stroke because my landlord has been attempting to destroy me and has succeeded because she won an eviction. I also suffer with Bi Polar and been abandon by all my family . I have lost my will to live.
I've been touched by reading how so many people are struggling with so many different issues, it brought tears to my eyes. We are all human beings created for a purpose. Just reading how some people are coping and not giving up is up lifting in itself. The pain of suffering is real. Life moves quickly with no regard to emotions. I pray to God that everyone who is in that blackness of hopelessness will find the strength to hold on. I believe in the power of prayer. I hope that all of us will gather hope through each of our stories. Hope, compassion, love, concern. We have to believe in God and one another. God Bless you all.
But my one thing is thinking about a woman who will never ever love me, so I'm really starting to lose the will.
There is the potential for love from many different people, in many different forms. Mental health is often a connection point between people, so please don't lose hope for human connection and love. Keep fighting the good fight, and remember to be kind to yourself.
There is so much pain in this page. I came here looking for support..i am early 40s n had anxiety n panic attack severe 3 months ago..now im on medication but the side effects are terrible..i was told to resign from job...my body is in pain all the time..
I'm heartbroken to hear of your struggle. It seems to have hit you suddenly, and without holding anything back. The fact that you're here means that you're reaching out and continuing to look for help, which is a sign of strength. I imagine it feels quite hopeless right now, but please remember that things won't always be this dark and painful. And no matter what, always be kind to yourself. Keep fighting.
I appreciate the sharing of such personal pain. I too struggle, have since I was quite young...have been suicidal..however, It gives me hope when I read of other's suffering and then how with diet, exercise, CBT and other methods one can maintain mental health. I work on it. I have a hope that one day I can maintain a fairly predictable happiness. Sending cyber hugs to everyone. I have read each persons comments and i do care. I am not religious, but i am sending love and prayers to each one of you.
You sound incredibly kind and strong, and I appreciate your cyber hug and love. Keep working towards that happiness; I have full confidence that you will reach a point where you can maintain it as you wish.
I have to admit that I am empty inside, have lost the will to live, and lost my faith too, which was basically nothing but 'jam tomorrow'. I think self-reliance is the only possible way out of this. Relying on an 'external deity' for help is pointless and a delusion. I have seen and experienced too much suffering to believe that an absent father could ever really love his children.
So now I will have to learn to rely on myself and the medical profession to find a way out of this ugly hole.
I am sorry to hear of your emptiness and loss of will to live. I am glad to hear of your determination to practice self-reliance and to work with the medical profession. I have found that faiths help a lot of people because relying on a deity helps people place hope in something. While I don't maintain a faith, I try to support others with different beliefs than mine, because sometimes that is just as useful for them as self-reliance will no doubt be useful for you.
I wish you the best,
I'm 34, I'm a dentist and I had it of fighting this depression everyday of my life. The thought of killing myself is never too far from my mind and sometimes it takes such a grip on me that I would do it right away if I just have the means that will guarantee my death for good. I sometimes think of the huge pain my family would endure if I kill myself so I want to find a way to make it look like it's a natural death or an accident. I could think of a million reason to keep me alive but in my head it's JUST NOT WORTH IT. All that pain, everyday, I'm a dentist and I'm putting my practice at risk for not showing everyday. Besides my horrific depression now I have this oppressive thought going like a loop in my head that if I don't get married this year I will put an end to my miserable life once and for all. People at my age are settled down with kids and all and I'm still laying in my bed debating if I should go to work or not. They say only you can save yourself but myself wants to anhiliate me and I have this crazy thoughts like marriage will somehow save me. I'm holding to a brittle, or I'm not holding at all....all I know is that I can't take it anymore and this is so overwhelming that I can't contemplate anything else besides suicide. I know that depression will never leave and it's making me weaker everyday, and everyday I'm loosing more self-esteem. The funny part is that people see me as strong and successful but all I see is pain and despair. I have been fighting this for so long that I will give up in a blink of an eye if I just find the right mean. People would say if you wanted to die you would be gone by now, but I tried once . . . Well like I said I'm stuck in a loop and God has giving up on me ....I JUST CAN'T ANYMORE can anyone undtestand that !!!!
I'm so sorry to hear about how you're feeling right now. It sounds very hard and I know how hard it is because I have been there, too. (By the way, I have found myself thinking that someone (a marriage) could somehow "fix" me, too, even though I know that's not remotely true.)
I know it may feel like the end of everything, but there is help. But you need to reach out to get it. See our resources and hotlines page for more: http://www.healthyplace.com/other-info/resources/mental-health-hotline-numbers-and-referr…
I totally get what you're feeling but believe me when I tell you, it _can_ get better with help.
- Natasha Tracy
- Writer, "Breaking Bipolar"
- Blog Manager
Sometimes I think about what it means to die. If one day when we pass on and such a place like heaven exists. That would be nice. Or even if there is nothing I would still be satisfied because there is a relief from the hell that I re-live each day.
We can fight depression and overcome it. Lets stop waiting for good things to happen. Its all about ATTITUDE. Life isnt fair or unfair, life is just life. I go through depression evety now and then. What has helped me overcome it are
2. Healthy diet
4. Friends & family
6. Helping others
7. Reading, listening to positive speeches
Take one small step to make your life. Live in the presenr. Forget the past, IT JUST DOESN'T MATTER. DON'T THINK ABOUT THE FUTURE. We are all connected in some form. Believe first, or fake it till you make it.
We can live happy lives, my friends. Just be strong.
At my lowest, all I could think of is killing myself to the point where I planned what I would do in detail. I'm still here because of one thought that crossed mind. Emotions are temporary....do not make permenant decisions based on temporary emotions...
I've been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease recently as well as spinal issues. Is it worth taking medication for it when I just want to die anyway? Maybe this is my way out. Sorry to be a loser. Having a bad episode.
I can really relate to your comment. No-one I know can really understand how hard it is to do the smallest things when you're in the grip of depression. I've been okay for quite a long time but over the last few days, I've been in the black fog again. It does help to recognise that so many other people are having the exact same experience as me
even though their situations are very different. It helps me to see that maybe it is my perspective, not the reality of my life. Thanks for your comment. I hope your walk helped.
I have used CBT and it works! It helps to challenge the irrational thoughts and having an "anchor" thought that you instead focus on as opposed to the overwhelmingly negative thoughts swirling in your mind just like you did by giving yourself just one reason to live. Powerful stuff. Thank you for your helpful post.