Invisible Illness
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Invisible Illness

Why I Don’t Make the Bed

Photo courtesy of PixaBay

Are you struggling with depression? I’ve been battling it for years. The first step was acknowledging I had depression and finding help. Once I found help, I had to discover what energized my daily life.

Over and over, I would hear, “You have to start the day by making your bed.”

Making the bed doesn’t work for me.

Depression saps our energy. The shadowy monster reaches out from the depths of our soul, cloaking our energetic self in darkness. We can’t find any light, any energy to keep us moving.

So we sit.

We sleep.

We don’t move.

For me, I sleep constantly when I’m depressed. Part of that is related to the emotional abuse I experienced in my early years. My bedroom was my safety. If I was asleep, my parents would leave me alone… for the most part.

But it wasn’t just an escape. As I grew older, it was the demon reaching out, dragging me down, and keeping me from building the energy to move.

As I worked through myself with my counselor, we tried to find things that would give me energy. Things that fed the army waiting to fight the monster.

Photo courtesy of Unsplash

What army fights the monster of depression?

An army of mythological creatures sits in the back of mind, caged when I’m depressed. They sit, locked down, struggling to get out and be free. Unicorns, ogres, ents, giants, wizards, and more, are all willing to fight the monster once released and fueled with energy.

After years of fighting, I discovered a way to release the army and fight back.

Over and over, I would read, “When you first wake up, make the bed.” The author would say it sets your mind to day mode. It creates a connection, telling your mind and body it’s time to get energized and move forward with the day.

I’m calling them out.

Maybe it’s just me, but making the bed doesn’t help my energy levels. It has never told my mind, “Let’s get started with the day.” That might work for some people, but not me.

I’m sure there are others like me. Maybe it’s because I struggle with depression. But here’s how I see it.

  1. My bed is for sleeping.
  2. My bedroom is for sleeping and getting dressed.
  3. My bedroom has absolutely nothing to do with my day.

Other than sleeping, I stay away from it. That was a key in working through my fight.

As I made my bed, I would think, “Why the hell am I doing this? I’m just going to sleep here later. The cats will mess it up. It seems like a waste of time.”

Making the bed causes me frustration. My mind always goes to “Why am I doing this? This is useless.”

That is not helpful for someone with depression.

We need to find things that help us build energy, stay positive, and feel like we are doing useful tasks.

As time went on, I realized people who say, “You have to make the bed,” are 100% wrong.

You Don’t “Have” to Do Anything.

You “have” to figure out what works for you. If you haven’t tried making the bed, give it a try. Maybe it will set your mind for the day. Maybe it will give you an extra boost of positivity and accomplishment.

It doesn’t for me.

But, like Garfield’s hate of Monday’s, I hate mornings. I’m not a morning person.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay

I Need a Fixed Routine to Get My Energy Moving and Productive.

  1. Wake up and stretch
  2. Tea and breakfast with a short episode of The Office or some other comedy
  3. Shower
  4. Make a list of to-dos for the day and work on them

Making the bed does not fit into my routine. It makes me frustrated. I feel like it’s a useless task, but that’s me. If I skip any of those four items on my list, my day drags.

Obviously, we need to wake up.

If I skip my tea, breakfast, or shower, I feel bogged down.

If I skip making a hand written list, I struggle to do anything. The list has to be hand written with numbers to keep me on track, moving, and fighting the beast.

Figure Out What Works for You

What gives you energy in the morning? Don’t believe someone because they say, “You HAVE to do x, y, or z.”

We aren’t all the same. If we were, the entire world would be an uninteresting, dull place to live in.

Acknowledge your fight, find your weapons, and use them. Beat the beast of depression back and win back your life.

Will writes the action-packed urban fantasy series The Fae Awakening to fuel the army fighting his depression. The series follows Hunter as he teams up with Fae creatures — ogres, brownies, goblins, and more — to take down unicorns covered in fire, chase their monstrous friends, and stop dangerous enemies at all costs.

Read Sugar High, a Fae Awakening short story about goblins and a sugar addicted porcupine robbing an ATM, available on Medium.

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We don't talk enough about mental health.

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Will O'Shire

Will O'Shire

Creating action-packed urban fantasy stories filled with magic, myth, and monsters in my pajama pants. I also write about depression, anxiety, and life.

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