Jump to content

How do I find motivation to take a shower?


anchors

Recommended Posts

Hi there, I'm new and created this account to maybe find some people who (hopefully) feel the same way. So anyway, I'm depressed, obviously. It's bad this time around. I'll go through stages where things aren't as bad as usual (they last about two days) but I always end up right where I started, which is in bed, wrapped in a blanket, staring at the ceiling and feeling sorry for myself. At this point my motivation has completely vanished, I can hardly pick myself to go to the bathroom. I think this is the part of depression I loathe the most, the lack of motivation and the constant exhaustion. One of the hardest things for me to do is keep up my hygiene. I don't think it's as bad as it could be, but it's still frustrating.

I have a love/hate relationship with showering. Even though I know that once I wash my hair and body I'll feel at least a little bit better, when I look at the task as a whole, it feels like climbing Mount Everest. It's unusual for me to go a day without at least washing my body because my mom pesters me until I do it, which I'm actually happy about otherwise it'd never get done. So I take baths at night most of the time. It takes me awhile because I mostly just feel like lying there without doing anything, but I do it anyway. Baths never make me feel as clean as showers do, though. I try (emphasis on 'try') to wash my hair every 2-3 days, but it pretty much never happens. I'm on day 5 now without washing my hair and I feel disgusting. I feel dirty and lazy and most of all I feel like a failure. I know this isn't true because I AM trying, I'm not just giving up, but why is it so hard for me to shower? I feel like it's such an easy thing to do, so why can't I do it?

When I do muster up the energy to get in the shower, I start to feel dizzy about three minutes in. I always make sure I'm not locking my knees, trust me, but I feel dizzy anyway. My showers usually last like 20 minutes, not because I mess around and just stand in there but because it just takes me that long. (How do people take five-minute showers?) I don't take boiling hot showers either because they don't make me feel clean at all. Sometimes I'll even sit down while I wash my hair because I get too tired. Anyway, it just wears me down so much I feel like it's not even worth it. I always end up feeling like I'm going to puke afterwards. Not a good feeling at all.

So I'm just sitting here trying to find the strength to pick myself and do it, but I can't. Does anyone have any suggestions for making it easier?

Thank you,

~M

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm on day 2 myself. If I don't have an external event going on rarely do I get going during this depressive episode. With my depression the harder I try the deeper I sink so I'm trying to not try and find some acceptance which sounds scary but counter-intuitively seems to be working by taking pressure off. Anyway welcome and good luck. You are not alone with struggling to take a shower here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi, anchors!! :welcomeani:

 

To be perfectly honest, the only way I get myself into the shower is to not think too much about it ahead of time.  I will be in bed or in the kitchen or wherever, and it will occur to me that I really need to get a shower in.  Then I start to think of why I don't want to.  At that point, I try to shut down my thinking and just put one foot in front of the other to get to the bathroom.  I make sure I have a clean towel, strip my clothes off and get the water going.  When I'm in the shower, I try to focus on what needs to get done while I'm in there, so I don't forget anything.  I'll think to myself, "hair, face, privates, feet and body" or something like that.  Then I go through the list and get each thing done.

That's the only way I can do it when I'm really depressed.  If I think about it too much, it overwhelms me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

sitting down is good breaking up your routine is good too. shave one day, not the next. 

getting nice shampoo? I know what you mean. it IS hard. you break it down into a million pieces and it's overwhelming. 

this reminded me of Mr. Bubbles. it used to make me happy as a kid. 

image.png

Edited by ejc
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can understand the feeling. These daily things we have to do can be very testing (as always, when someone else says it I feel sympathy for them but when I say it I feel compelled to make a remark about "first world problems"). I suppose I'm lucky in the fact that if I don't shower I feel extremely disgusting and it does things like trigger my allergies and means I'll have a much harder time sleeping that night. On the other hand it's another thing that makes me afraid to leave my comfort zone.

 

There's a few things I could say for psychological motivation, but I think you know them already. "You'll appreciate it after" blah blah. But I find practical solutions are often better than theories or faux mindsets. One thing I can suggest is to make the experience as pleasant or as fun as possible for yourself. Consider some of your favourite music in the bathroom? A radio or CD player? You could make a "shower mixtape" or something? Or is that also too much effort? I understand if so. Nice lighting might help you appreciate it too.

Sometimes I have to just yell at myself to do something. "Do it". "Go on, do it". "DO IT!!!" Sometimes accompanied with some naughty words. It can help.

Edited by King of Medicine
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 minutes ago, ejc said:

this reminded me of Mr. Bubbles. it used to make me happy as a kid. 

That reminds me...I have this wonderful-smelling Avon bubble bath...it's called "Blushing Kiss."  I put one capful of that in the water, and the bathroom smells divine.  I may do that tonight, with some candles and some classical music. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess my best advice would be to try to associate it with something else you do.  As bad as you think your hygiene might be I'm sure it's not that bad.  For example in the morning when you brush your teeth, make it a habit to have the mindset of "After I brush my teeth, I'm going to take a shower".  The theory behind this is known as the 'If-Then Statement' sort of like in computer science.  This means having the activity contingent on another thing that you know you do on a regular basis, will make it much more easier to achieve.  

Also, it may be a good idea to track your progress. One of the biggest clichés in life is that it is more about the journey than the destination.  Many people can feel the stagnancy of routines if there aren't any immediate results and I know it may sound a bit silly but keeping a journal of how long you can keep the streak can show you how far you've come and what an accomplisment it's been.  Hope this helps

Link to comment
Share on other sites

HI anchors :)

You could get a waterproof radio and play that while you shower. Listening to music would probably enhance the experience. I'm not sure why you're feeling dizzy though. Water does contain harmful substances like fluoride, chlorine, lead, heavy metals, anti-depressants and medications (yes that stuff is actually in our water). Maybe you are sensitive to those things which is making you feel unwell when you shower. That's probably less likely but it's all I can think of.

I did a google search and this is what I found:

The following reasons are all possible causes for you feeling dizzy after a shower:

  • Low Blood Pressure: Your blood pressure may be low. Hot water dilates the blood vessels which lowers the blood pressure. This makes you feel dizzy and faint.
  • Pregnancy: It is very common for pregnant women to have low blood pressure causing them to get lightheaded particularly when standing up from a seated position or changing positions quickly.
  • Dehydrated: How is your water intake? If you are not drinking enough fluids you could be dehydrated.
  • Lack Of Food: If you have not eaten for a long period of time, your blood sugar may be too low.
  • Medication Changes: If you have recently changed your level of any medication you may be prescribed, it may be affecting you. Consult your GP.
  • Hot Water: It is possible that your shower was too hot. Hot water can cause the arteries to get close to your skin and to open, allowing you to 'naturally' get rid of excess heat. This process lowers your blood pressure, so when you suddenly move up, not enough blood is reaching your lungs and brain, which can cause dizziness.
  • Infection: Dizziness can suggest a possible infection building.

I hope this helps. And yeah you should probably get a stool or something, you don't want to slip in there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, King of Medicine said:

First I've ever heard of it. Where did you hear this?

It's very well known and documented google it you'll be shocked at what they've found in our water.  Fluoride is not good for our brains either it messes up our pituitary glad. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Thank you to everyone who replied to this post!! Finding motivation is still difficult but I've been able to wash my hair more frequently and push myself to shower instead of bathe more often. Thanks for such good advice :happy::hearts:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I'll give you some reasons to shower. You don't necessarily need to shower everyday, but it's imperative to shower 3-4 times a week because showering too much will cause your skin to dry. Try watering your hair with cold water, since watering it with hot water will open the pores.

This is the best advice I could offer. Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I could lf have written your post! Depression "takes the wheel" and seems to make all our decisions for us, and keep us down. I do feel better after I shower, and feel even better when I actually do my hair, instead of throwing it up in a messy bun. If I put makeup on, it's even better! Finding the motivation to do all of this seems like an insurmountable task. It absolutely sucks. I wouldn't wish this on anyone. I try to focus on how good I look and feel if I do all these things, but the depression sneaks in and says "who the hell cares what you look like? Just stay in bed" ugh. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Hi, Helena,

Welcome to the forum! As you can see by this thread, many people who experience depression also find personal hygiene and good self care to be extremely difficult when depressed. This is a symptom of depression. Have you been diagnosed with depression or ever talked about this or other symptoms with your doctor? If you haven't, now might be a good time.

Glad to have you with us!

xo, C

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome to the forums Anchors (& Helena). :) 

 

I see so much of myself in your original post, and the way I used to deal with this was by an outside force; a person (with your case, your mom) having to come and intercept the laziness. It's hard when you're in your depressive state, hygiene is often times on the back burner of priorities (which could be like 1-2 things, or none!) when you're just contemplating living or questioning "why" for every unanswered thought. 

 

More or less how I "overcame" this was moving, helping others out which knew would raise my mood/energy (which is key) and filling empty gaps in my life (gardening has helped immensely). That said, this is quite a bit to do just for improving your hygiene, but it's not only about that as it is improving your overall health and mindset which can take months or years. Even still, I struggle lots. It's just one uphill battle after another, you just gotta keep your head up through it all.

 

Good luck and keep us updated when you can. :P 

Edited by Almha
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

Hi, I'm new here. I've lived with depression for years, and current relapse. It is so hard for me to get in the shower. I will procrastinate all day (I have oily hair that needs to be washed daily). Then I won't go anywhere because I haven't showered, which just makes me feel ashamed and more depressed. It's a vicious cycle. If I can just get myself in the shower, I always have better days. I'm glad I found this thread - I never told my psychiatrist this.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi. I have shower problem too. Now I end up by putting the face cleanser with just a bit of water on my hands, then I rub the cleanser, and then I wash with very little water, just enough to clean the cleanser from my face. I do the same on to the body. Just splash some water on to the part of the body that I want to clean and then I put on the shower cream. And then I clean it with very little water, enough to clean the shower foam. 

Hugs. 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think there's more than just being overwhelmed. Because I can rally through a fast hair wash with a self promise that I will rest before brushing teeth, hair, makeup, etc. 

I wonder in my case maybe I am angry at society's expectations of hygiene, the lack of acknowledgement that depressiom is a real illness (they say depression is the one illness people don't bring casseroules for), so my anger plus my depression sabotage my showering.

I wish I didn't have oily hair, then I would mostly take sponge baths. Dry shampoo is $19 per can, replaces 3 or 4 shampoos before running out, (if you have long hair it takes so much time to spray on each strand I might as well have showered!)

But it may work for those with non-oily hair or short hair.

I really hate the itchy scalp, the oily smell, and sending my children in to buy groceries while I wait in the car because I didn't shower.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sorry everyone, but I love the fact that so many other people struggle with this too. Makes me feel so relieved that I'm not the only one. Thanks for sharing! 

Btw I have low blood pressure and sometimes get a little dizzy/lightheaded when in a shower that's too hot and my doc recommended drinking a glass of cold water before showering. Might help. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...

I have lack of motivation to shower or clean the house. I tell myself all the positives from getting a shower too. When i started my medicine i was so lethargic i didnt shower for a little over a week but now i make myself do it at least every 3 days. I know i will feel better afterwards. The thing with showering though is making sure you have clean laundry so then you might have to do that and you're like ugh but i can't get off my ass lol. I wish i had motivation. Even on adderall i dont anymore.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...