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When we feel depressed, we often also feel overwhelmed, tired and demotivated and the simplest tasks seem impossible or too difficult to achieve. As we then balk at or stop doing our tasks, chores or even getting out of bed our self-esteem takes a nosedive and we feel less in control than ever. 
So, here’s some creative strategies to help get you going again. 
Three key factors that need to be addressed: 

1. Proactiveness 

Plan in advance for the next time you're going to feel lethargic, overwhelmed and demotivated: When you do this, you need to think about your symptoms. And the strategies that will work for you. 
What are your symptoms? 
Loss of appetite 
Sleeping too much or Not enough 
Outbursts of anger 
or something else 
Write yours down. 
So, when we recognise our depressive symptoms rearing their heads - we need to proactively spring into action. 
So, what do you need to give you a boost and get you going again? 
To be with your family 
Time speaking with your friends, 
Taking exercise, 
Some space to read, 
Listening to music 
Motivational YouTube videos 
ASMR like Ozley on YouTube who will comfort you when you feel Anxious or Depressed. 
Going outside into the Light? Sunshine 
Watching a funny, uplifting film 
Talking to your Therapist 
See our Self Soothing Tool for ideas. 
The best defence is a good offence. 

2. Urgency 

This is being able to understand what is most important and more pressing so you can block out all the other distractions that will be overwhelming and focussing only on what is immediately important only. 
Keep a to-do list and give tasks a score dependent on when they are due: 
Things that must be done today 4* 
Tomorrow 3* 
Sometime this week 2* 
Next Week 1* 
When you are not at your best then only aim to tackle 4* tasks on the do list for today and in total, I suggest you ignore anything that is less than three stars urgency. 
Say ‘No’ to non-essential tasks 
So, eating and handing in that important report may be essential but seeing a friend or attending something that could be postponed is a non-essential task. 
When we say yes to everything, we amplify our stress. 

3. Difficulties 

Tasks can also be marked with a difficulty score of 1, 2 and 3. 
Level 1 Difficulty task score 1 (Easy) e. g eating breakfast or taking a shower 
Level 2 Difficulty task score 2 (Moderate) e.g. You decide what this would be for you 
Level 3 Difficulty task score 3 (Difficult) e. g Scheduling an appt/ finishing a report 
When depressed. I recommend you focus on all difficult level one tasks, first, so that you don't feel overwhelmed and feel that you're making some progress. 
Tick each one off as you go along, you'll feel more empowered and prouder of yourself. This feeling often boosts you to go on to the level two, difficulty tasks. 
Slowly step by step do one task at a time until you reach level three tasks. 
Now, level three difficulty tasks. The best way to handle these is to break them down into level one tasks. E.g., If you can't face a 30-minute exercise session could you commit to say 10 minutes. Often when we commit to less, we end up doing a little bit more. 
Anyway, I hope you find this helpful. Also, watch out for any negative self-talk sabotaging you as you celebrate your successes. I recommend this affirmation to counteract them: 
‘I am being the best I can be today’ 
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