How to Increase your Productivity when you are Depressed?
Self Help

How to Increase your Productivity when you are Depressed?

How to get stuff done when you are in depression

All of us experience sadness and despair at times in our life. But depression can never be equated to these feelings at all. Depression, as a mental health condition, is extreme sadness and despair that one experiences not just for a mere number of days. It even interferes with one’s physical health and daily activities inflicting pain, lack of concentration, lack of energy, rampant weight loss, loss of appetite, sleeplessness etc., upon them.

Read more : Depression: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

A combination of therapy and medication can help individuals suffering from depression manage their symptoms. Since depression terribly affects one’s energy, motivation and concentration levels in daily life, it becomes increasingly difficult for these people to live with the condition. It interferes with the completion of their daily chores, and academic and non-academic tasks and mostly renders them unproductive.


People can, thus, personally devise strategies or try and follow those that are found reliable and suitable to their needs. Since depression is such a commonly found mental condition in today’s world let us try and identify some strategies or tactics that can be actively utilized to improve their motivation and productivity.

1. Bring Clarity to the Work to be Done

One of the first things that one could consciously do to retain productivity is to bring clarity to the tasks that have to be completed during the day. writing them down, making a physical to-do list or even trying to arrange the works to be completed mentally and arranging them according to their priority would help the individual comprehend the several things that they have to complete and aid in decluttering their minds. This can also help them in gaining fresh focus on carrying out the tasks.

Read More: Exercise may Help Improve memory function in people with Depression

2. Breakdown the Tasks

Depressive disorders severely impair one’s levels of concentration. There would be times when they would not be able to work on something with their complete focus for a substantial amount of time. In such scenarios, breaking down larger tasks into smaller chunks of them would immensely help them retain their focus.

3. POMODORO technique

It is one such strategy that would aid a person diagnosed with depression to actively retain their concentration. The technique involves taking out about 25 minutes to complete one of the tasks and then subsequently breaking for 5 minutes. This method can be utilized to complete all the broken-down tasks. The technique becomes more effective when coupled with small treats or reinforcements after the completion of every task time.

4. Ask for Help

Asking for help is a critical step for every individual with depression. These individuals must ensure that they ask for help especially when they find it difficult to carry out complex tasks all by themselves. This would help them by reducing their distress in working alone and helping them cope with the tasks they are assigned. Talk to them about the tasks that are to be completed. Conversing with them will not only prompt the latter to provide suggestions for completing the distressing tasks but also will bring some sort of clarity in what is to be done to tackle the difficulty, within the struggling individual.

5. Engage in Activities

Even though depression can drain your motivation, one should try and engage themselves in activities that would help them remain active for at least a short while. Exercising, taking a walk, doing yoga, going to Zumba classes etc would not only help them remain active for at least a shorter period of time, but this routine would also help them improve their physical health. These activities also can aid in reducing the symptoms of depression disorders and can help them improve their focus and concentration levels improving their productivity.

6. Enough sleep is the key

Even though it may sound ironic, individuals with depression should try and adjust their daily routines, consciously, in such a way that their daily activities and their everyday diet support the availability of an adequate amount of sleep. Getting enough hours of sleep directly affects the mood, happiness, and mental and physical health conditions of the individuals. It also aids them in retaining their focus on the tasks that they undertake and helps them complete them efficiently.

7. Use Focus Exercises

Mantra recitation, breathing exercises, and short walks around your workstation are a few examples of focus exercises. A common focus technique that works anywhere is the body scan. It entails beginning with your toes and extending your awareness to your ankles, knees, stomach, and finally, the top of your head. You can control the symptoms of depression at work by practising grounding techniques, which can also make you feel calmer and more at ease.


There is no one optimum technique to deal with the complicated mental health problem of depression. Since everyone is unique, what may be appropriate for you may not be appropriate for someone else. Even while some of these techniques could assist you with daily duties, one should work with a reputable professional to develop a depression treatment plan that is customised to one’s circumstances.

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