Productivity While Depressed/Anxious | Positive Psychology

Productivity While Depressed/Anxious | Positive Psychology

I did not want to do anything today. Yet here I am, hair done, showered, talking to you. Hey, guys! That was more of a wheeze that a cough. This is just a quick video for you guys. I wasn’t planning
on filming this. I wasn’t planning on making it. But, I have not been having the
best couple of mental health days. And there’s a tip – or a trick – that I’ve been using a lot. And I wanted to share it with you guys. As you can see from the title of this video,
I think this is a really great tool for depression, but it also works if you’re struggling
to get things done during the day, with the anxiety or any kind of mental health issue. It is called “chunking the day.” At least that’s what I call it.
I don’t know if it has an official name. This is a resource, this is a
tool that can be used on those days when you’re having
trouble getting anything done. Maybe you have really low levels of motivation,
maybe your’e feeling really down, really anxious, having trouble getting out of bed. Chunking the day is great for those times when the world
and your to-do list just seem so big, it’s insurmountable. And it’s exactly what it sounds like. Put simply, you’re taking your tasks
whatever it is you need to do – and breaking it down into small, bite-sized pieces. I’m going to use the example of making this video today. I was not feeling motivated and so I chunked the day. I chunked it down. Instead of thinking about the finished
video that needed to be created, in terms of showering, doing my hair, doing my
makeup, getting dressed, setting up the camera, setting up the lights, getting my memory cards sorted,
filming the thing, putting it on my computer, editing it, uploading it, making the thumbnail,
sharing it around, hoping it does well. That’s a lot. And today it felt like too much. And so from the minute I got out of bed,
I’ve been chunking my day. You break down your task into small simple pieces. Really attainable, achievable goals. For example, the first thing that I did was take a shower. And so I told myself: “Alayna, all you need to
do is take a shower. You’re going to get out of bed, you’re going to take a shower, and then if
you want, you can go right back to bed.” I wasn’t already putting pressure on my mind,
committing in my mind, to the next goal. I was just focusing on the one thing –
the first step that I had to get done: Taking a shower. And I showered! And after I showered – okay, you know –
I felt a little bit better I had gotten something done, and I could go back to bed if that
was what I thought I needed. Or, I could go on to my yoga
mat and do my practice. Does that seem like too much? Going on the yoga mat
and committing to a half-hour, 45-minute practice? Then all I’m going to do is sit on my yoga mat. Maybe I’ll do a short meditation.
Maybe I’ll do a couple of stretches. But I’m not committing to a full yoga class.
I’m just going to get on to my mat. Surprise, surprise. Once I’m already on the mat,
I feel motivated and ready to do a class. Do you see what I’m getting at with this? Once you’ve broken down these massive tasks into
small consumible pieces and you complete one task after the other, no matter how small,
you start to build momentum. So the next thing is making this video. I said “Alayna, just do your hair.
You don’t have to do anything else after that. Just do your hair. And that’s it! Then we
can go back to bed. That’s totally fine.” Shocker! Once I’ve got those few things on, I’ve
got the ball rolling and here I am filming a video. It’s not going to surprise you hear me
say that the key to all of this is kindness. There’s no point in ridiculing yourself and beating
yourself down because you’re not feeling super motivated that day or because you’re
having a bad mental health day. It doesn’t help anything to
belittle and put yourself down. Be gentle with yourself. Chunk the day. That’s all for this video.
I just wanted to share this tip with you, guys. I get this question a lot about motivation or
getting out of bed on the really hard days, and this is always my recommendation,
because this is what works for me, and I hope that it can
help some of you, too. I love you very much. If you’re interested in any of my other mental health
videos, they are all linked in the playlist down below. Subscribe for more videos like this
and I will see you guys on Friday. Bye!


100 thoughts on “Productivity While Depressed/Anxious | Positive Psychology”

  • This is such good advice, and it'll be SO useful. Instead of thinking about how I need to study hard so I can ace my upcoming exams so I can get into my dream university, so I can get a degree, so I can get a doctorate, so I can have my dream career…Maybe I'll just start with getting out of bed, and sitting at my desk if I feel up to it.
    This is so what I needed right now. Genuinely can't thank you enough!

  • LoveIsaLosingGame says:

    I've been having the worst mental health days the past 2 weeks, and I really needed this. I'm taking my finals this week and it's just been the worse because iv'e missed alot of my classes because I haven't been able to get out of bed in the morning. So I have to makeup my missing work +study for finals that i'm not ready for… Like it's hard to pay attention in school and get good grades when your mental health is down the drain.. Thankyou for this video <3 I feel like a lot of youtubers are scared or something to talk about mental health. Thankyou for speaking up on a subject that usually wants to be hidden.

  • I really needed to watch this. When I had my first baby, I had undiagnosed Postpartum Depression, and when I finally went in to see if I could get help, I was diagnosed as severely depressed. I've been battling depression and anxiety off and on for most of my life, and I recently had another baby, and every day is a battle. Some days I have good days, but others I don't. I have two other children as well as my baby, and I have such s hard time doing daily tasks sometimes. I get so down on myself.
    This is great information I otherwise wouldn't have known. โค

  • Good Lord! I really needed this very much. Especially the last bit about being kind to myself. I just keep "punishing" myself for not completing a chunk. I have tried the chunking method before, and that "being kind" bit never was really something that crossed my mind. I say to me, "If you can't even do his small task, you're slow AF". And then, I wouldn't finish it, and feel horrible about it. And so went on the downward spiral.
    I was honestly tearing up when you said "Be Kind".
    Thanks a lot Alayna! Love these Positive Psychology videos!

  • This is such a good tool. I've used it for my patients regularly and for myself. I have perilously low motivation and setting one attainable goal at time does really work.

    That aside, how in the world do you do yoga after a shower? Lol. I get so sweaty in my practice! Do you have magic? ๐Ÿ˜„

  • Thankyou so so much this really helped me get to understanding what i should be doing to get motivated cos i wasnt thinking the right way so thankyou thankyou thankyou this will help a lot xx

  • This is an amazing advice. Recently, I realised that putting myself down for every little thing that goes wrong, heck even for the things that I don't know the result of, is very damaging both to my efficiency and well being. Yet, being kind to myself is extremely difficult. We are taught that self-love is wrong and low confidence and shyness are awfully romanticised. I would love to see more videos on the topic of self kindness from you. Could you make also something about how to allow ourselves to be kind to ourselves? The mental block of "I can't be nice to myself because then I…" is really hard to overcome.

  • Sunflower Aulait says:

    Needed this๐Ÿ˜•
    It's what I've been doing but being kind to myself does not come naturally. Having to keep reminding myself that I actually don't have to conquer the world every day is not easy, but this video has been a good reminder and boost to be kind even to myself. Thanks for posting this even though I'm sure you were exhausted afterwards๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ’ฆ

  • This is such important advice! In CBT, it's sometimes stated as the 5 minute rule. Commit to doing something for 5 minutes, and if after 5 minutes you don't think you can do it? That's cool, you tried. But more often than not, I find that I can do a lot more than I thought I could after I get started. I used to handle essays the same way. Just open a Word document. Format the pages. Write SOMETHING, even if it's bad and will ultimately get deleted. A lot of times, with both anxiety and depression, it's about starting. Thank you for the reminder <3 I really needed it today.

  • I "accidentally" stumbled upon this last night. But I've been dealing with a deep cloudy over engulfing depression.
    This video was a wonderful reminder. I had more confidence and motivation chunking today.
    Blessings ๐Ÿ˜Š

  • hey, Im asking this here because I dont know where else, and i Hope for a Little help. i think my girlfriend May struggel with her mental health. I want to be supportiv but when I have a Little Problem myself she doesnt Care or tells me to leave her alone. So I left her alone. And during the 48h we havent talked to each other she seems Like the happiest Person on earth. I dont want to lose her but if I bring her Down that much, maybe I have to let Go?

  • MyWildlyBoringLife says:

    I absolutely loved this video so much. It's so important for mental health to be a topic of frank and honest and open discussion. I'm so thankful that you speak openly about your struggles Alayna, it's really so inspiring and more helpful than you know! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I love this! I go to a psychologist for my anxiety and depression and this is exactly what she told me to do. It's definitely helped me in more ways than one. Whether it's just getting out of bed, studying for 5 minutes, or just getting my clothes into a hamper so I can wash them. I love seeing someone else using the same techniques and it working for them! <3

  • Thnk u so much i really needed this today has been a bad day n watching your videos n following your advice has helped me so much in the past few years. so just know that what your doing in really making a difference in a lot of peoples lives!!!!!!!๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ˜‰

  • do you have any tips on how to incorporate this in a work day? like, in an office situation for instance, where everything isn't up to you?

  • Glad to know that other folks use this strategy as well, I just never had a name for it. ๐Ÿ™‚ My to do list has been overwhelming me the past couple days and taking it a little at a time helps improve my mood and confidence!

  • The timing of this video couldn't have been better for me ๐Ÿ˜Š I've had a tough time getting through this semester and the upcoming finals are getting me stressed already.. thank you โค๏ธ

  • This is pretty much what I needed lastly. For a couple of days I have had this barrier that stops me from doing things I normally enjoy. And I thought I might need some sort of mental detox but I'll try chunking my day and see how it plays out ;3 I love your videos <3

  • Nicholas Davenport says:

    I thank you for this. Honestly I really appreciate it. Ive been noticing that normally I operate as such: I have days where Im motivated to be productive whether it be with school or writing or music or anything and I feel amazing. But then I have days where I just dont feel like moving out of bed at all and I overthink about everyhing and start to get mad at myself for having low motivation for that day. Before watching this I thought that I was just a few of the only human beings that experience this issue. I honestly have been "chunking" forever but have had no idea this was even an actual exercise or mental health obstacle. Thank you so much for this again and I look forward to more videos such as these where I expect to maybe learn something new about myself ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

  • I just downloaded an app that I think is really cool. it's called headspace-meditation. I'm going to try it out because all of your videos brighten up my day and I just think I get ahead of myself. I just figured I would put it up in the comments and hopefully you can check it out

  • This could not have been more timely! I had a meeting for one of my classes today that culminated in having a very long to-do list of things to prepare for job applications, and it was incredibly stressful. I was doing my best to break it down into chunks, and seeing this was just so encouraging! Thank you! Also I'm proud of you for getting this video uploaded. <3

  • I really needed this. Thanks, Alayna. I'm currently doing A Levels while being depressed, stressed out, and more than a little anxious. They've wrecked havoc with everything, and I went to one of my teachers today after class and explained to him why I didn't get the work done, and he was so supportive I started shaking and nearly cried. Other teachers wrote it off as laziness, despite proven hard work and good grades in the past, so huhhhhh, but he wasn't like that. He asked me what he could do to help, offered to organise a classroom for me to do my exams in to help stop my panic attacks, and even said he knew it seemed impossible to get anything done when you feel depressed, but he suggested stuff I could do to help boost my surprise drop in grades when I felt like I could manage it with the support I'm still waiting to receive (I'm still on the waiting list for therapy I've been waiting six months GRR). He got it. He understood. No-one else did.

    With this video, I feel so grateful I could cry. By taking your advice and chunking, I can actually get the required work done that he expects, and all my other assignments too, as well as practice. To say you've saved me rn is not an understatement. These last couple of months have been so bad I've self-harmed, binge ate, stopped running as often, and a lot of the time, cried in bed all day. So this is amazing. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you. xxx

  • This is good ^^ and please, everybody, tell your parents! It may feel to you like you'd be a burden, but it'll explain your recent "unusual" actions to them, so that they don't have to worry. And if you had a kid, wouldn't you want them to tell you if they had that problem? And it feels good to get it off your chest ^^ And writing a note or text is fine too if that is easier for you!

  • This is super helpful. it seems like i have been having "one of those days" every day for the last 8 months. Everything seems overwhelming and unattainable, and the condition my house is in right now, particularly my bedroom, is so gross because of it. lol

  • An amazing video! Great job! It has definitely gotten the ball rolling for me! Thanks ๐Ÿ˜€

    If I could add anything I would say: To listen to yourself, don't ever force yourself to do anything you don't want to. In the end, if you force yourself, you're going to end up not enjoying whatever it is you are doing, and in some cases it may make you feel worse even it is something you usually enjoy. So keep calm and listen to yourself!

  • I did this today. Bad anxiety day, which then makes me depressed because I'm sad and pissed that I'm so anxious. I work from home, I'm a metalsmith (/jeweler), so I chunked the shit out of this day and got so much accomplished when I was SURE I wasn't going to move off the couch. Thank you. โค๏ธ

  • Just out of curiosity, when was the last time you had your vitamin D level checked? You'd be surprised the wonders it does for motivation and eliminating anxiety.

  • Francisco Almeida says:

    I thought this was going to be a really heavy video about depression/motivation/slash coping with the two of them but it was a really cool one, seriously! Up until now and I didn't realize I do the same 'chunk the day' as you do when I get anxious, it really gets you going during the day! Guess that's a good option to avoid anxiety! ๐Ÿ˜€ Keep up with these cool vids! xo

  • man, i been thinking. how do you distract yourself from the 'UM SWEATY, YOU'RE LYING TO YOURSELF BIG TIME' thoughts? aside from depression and anxiety i also have ocd/bpd (my previous doctor and therapist disagree there).

  • I can't tell you how thankful I am for this video right nowโค I've been having huge mental problems again lately and I will definitely try this out and I hope that it'll work for me as good as it worked for you ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks

  • I've been feeling this way for the past few weeks , and I must say watching this helped me a lot . You are truly so helpful with my mental illness and honestly it helps me, It all started when i saw your mindful video and ever since I have been trying to keep my mind on just that and It helps .. just had to say Thank You Alayna!!!

  • I've been depressed/manic/anxious for years and this is really really good advice. At least for where I am now. Like I wish someone had said this to me years ago…It's so simple but so useful. Thank you! I hope it helps lots of people. It's good for people with depression to share how they cope, otherwise we just hear from professionals or friends who may or may not understand what it feels like.

  • udel. just udel. says:

    This sounds so beautiful and healthy, but I'm afraid it doesn't fit me all that well. The thing is, my motivation seems to be even more complicated. If i 'chunk my day' and start, say, with a shower (cause that's typical), I take the 'you can go back to bed after that' quite literally and then it takes me another half an hour to get out of there again to face the next challenge. I feel like with every second more I spend in my bed, I feel worse overall. Sometimes I can keep at it and not go back to bed and then sometimes I feel alright again after some productivity.
    I feel so bad for always finding flaws in other people's tips for self care and stuff like that, ugh, I'm sorry.

  • Maru Shinu Nakamura says:

    It actually might work! Got depressed and it lasts for the last two weeks + I'm struggling with anxiety and I have a lot of work for school. Couldn't get anything done, I was sitting on my laptop and on one hand I couldn't find the motivation or power to do stuff, on the other I was so anxious that I won't be able to go back to school after the break, because I don't have the essays written and all that stuff done. I'm going to try it out with small tasks and maybe I will have at least one thing done and I will feel a bit better ๐Ÿ™‚

  • this is such great advice! I've been doing this for a couple of years too now and it improves my productivity and mood so much!

  • AlwaysfightFangirl says:

    i literally just found you channel this week. I been having the worse time with my depression. I'm now seeing therapist because both Anxiety/depression/suicidal thoughts.

    Its been to much and point i'm feeling numb and always get mad at myself just thanks for this video its really needed right now just thanks so much

  • I just stumbled across this video. I really needed to hear this especially after the on and off months I've been having and even this week. Thanks so much Alayna <3

  • Christa Loves Espen says:

    Thank you for this, Alaynaa. Your mental health videos are becoming some of my favorites. Even if it's just seeing your face and hearing your kind words. You are a genuine human and your effort to help others is much appreciated. ๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ’•

  • I just cant. I cant.. All these things i will have to do.. I need to do.. Theyre not really hard things to do.. Take a shower.. Do homework.. Study.. I WANT TO BUT I CANT. Ive been crying in my bed for like IDK how much… Everytime I get up to do something I suddenly start crying even harder.. My head hurts. IM TIRED OF THIS CRAP

  • I'm literally crying, thank you so much <3 I really, really needed this. It can be so hard to just get out of bed in the morning and this video just helped so much. Thank you thank you thank you just thank you <3

  • Smiley Sara Janee says:

    Great video, really needed some help with this issue. On my anxious days the worst part is when I feel guilty for not getting anything done and it just compounds the anxiety

  • Shannon Cowie says:

    This has helped me so much today, honestly did not want to get out of bed at all! Thank you for making this xxx

  • Sydney Gassiot says:

    my family calls this "how to eat an elephant"haha not the most vegan friendly phrase… but same idea! thanks for being such an inspiration ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I'm going to try this, after I wake up. No, really. I didn't sleep at all, though I tried. I will get a little sleep; afterwards, I have a few tiny ideas that are pieces of what I will try to get done. Great advice!

  • Oh my goodness I should have rewatched this at the beginning of the day, not late at night. I'm so stressed right now and I'm not getting anything done. Today was another wasted day.

  • Good advice well packaged, thank you! I'm a therapist and I think I will bookmark this to use with clients who are struggling with motivation. (Also, well done you for being kind to yourself and getting stuff done. <3 )

  • Brianna Victoria says:

    this is so nice, just watching you explain it has made me feel less pressure to get things done. thank you for making this, Iโ€™m gonna try to go through my day tomorrow using this method and hopefully it helps me out. and if it doesnโ€™t we can try it again the next day. sending love โ™ฅ๏ธ

  • Thank you so so much for every single one of your videos. This video is what i need in my life right now, i appreciate you. T

  • As a person who has depression , i think your method is the most effective , there's is no other way for a person like me, who doesn't enjoy doing thing , to get anything done because the key is to remember :" it's not about enjoying it it's about getting done with it " . Thank you so much …

  • I just wanted to say thank you for making this video short. When I'm having a bad day I can't concentrate on anything for more than five minutes so the short length of this video was really helpful. Thank you x

  • This advice is soooo helpful. I have struggled so much lately because I think of the 50 million things I need to do instead of focusing on one thing at a time. I will definitely try this!!

  • I hate it when this happens…

  • this is great, I really struggle with this sometimes, especially because iโ€™m still in school and have so much to do

  • Gosh I'm just seeing this why didn't I see this before this advice is so helpful and you're so fucking adorable ๐Ÿ™

  • Love this and you. I have my official exams ( senior year finals ) after 20 days. I have to study everything we took this year. So itโ€™s a lot. My friends have already done most of the studies and I still havenโ€™t done anything, and i was getting really anxious about it. Everytime i tried to study something, i would think about what i have to study for the whole 20 days left, and it was way too overwhelming. So iโ€™m gonna start step by step without overthinking about what I have to finish before the exams. Big thanks for this advice.

  • sincerelymajestik says:

    Iโ€™m just going to brush my teeth & come back to clean my room. Not for a specific amount of time. Just until Iโ€™m done for today, then I can do what I need for myself.

  • Robert Lombardo says:

    The simplest things can seem insurmountable these days without breaking them down. How do you break down the already huge obstacle of "get over your depression?"

  • Thank you soooooo much for this video. I'm so fucked up mentally and getting things done its just so hard. But i'll try to follow these tips โค๏ธ

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *