Things You Hate to Do During Depression

Depression or bipolar disorder can make simple tasks seem like impossible feats

Woman with gloves in dirty kitchen

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If you have depression, live with bipolar disorder, or have a mental illness that makes depression more likely, self-care and household tasks can easily pile up and become difficult. 

Below are some common tasks that you may find difficult if you experience periods of depression. 

Personal Hygiene 

Personal hygiene is undoubtedly important, but when you are feeling down, you may not be able to muster up the energy you need to get yourself in the shower or tub.

Other tasks that can be challenging include:

  • Brushing your teeth
  • Getting dressed/changing out of your pajamas
  • Doing your hair
  • Shaving
  • Washing clothes 

Getting Out of Bed 

Depression and feeling fatigue often go hand in hand, making moving or getting out of bed incredibly difficult. This is often because people with depression have problems with sleep—trouble falling asleep or staying asleep throughout the night. These poor sleep patterns can make it that much hard to get out of bed in the morning, making you feel sluggish and unmotivated to move.

Household Chores and Management 

Taking care of yourself while depressed is difficult enough. Taking care of others or your household might just feel impossible. This can include the following:

  • Caring for your kids, pets or partner
  • Managing household chores
  • Cooking dinner
  • Doing dishes or laundry

But a pile of dirty laundry or ​stack of dirty dishes will only magnify your feelings of worthlessness. Do your best to start small and tackle one responsibility at a time.

Going to Work

Keeping a job can be difficult if you live with bipolar disorder or experience periods of debilitating depression. Not only is it hard to get out of bed and dressed for work, but once you get to the office you may have difficulty concentrating, which can lead to procrastination.


If your family and friends are having a hard time understanding depression, show them this list. Those who live and struggle with bipolar depression have many problem behaviors in common. That doesn't mean you can't try to overcome them, but if someone is angry at you, explaining your difficulties and that you need help and support may make a difference. 

If depression is causing you to neglect self-care, create a plan for change. This can include:

  • Start slowly. Identify one small, easy step you can take to begin caring for yourself better and build from there.
  • Break up daunting tasks into smaller activities. For example, instead of cleaning the entire kitchen, just tackle the dishes.
  • Avoid putting pressure on yourself or putting a time limit on how long it should take to "get your act together" or "get motivated."
  • Practice self-compassion and acceptance. This will help build a healthier inner dialogue, which can help motivate you to move past feelings of depression.
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Article Sources

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  1. Oral Health Foundation. Mental Illness and Oral Health.

  2. National Sleep Foundation. Depression and Sleep.

  3. National institute of Mental Health. Older Adults and Depression.

  4. National Institute of Mental Health. Depression Basics.