How to not feel lazy

I feel like the laziest person in the world. Today I have done absolutely nothing except browse the web. My therapist and doctor tell me that I shouldn’t worry about it, that it is a symptom and I can’t help it. My GF doesn’t seem to mind it because I cook, clean and do laundry. But without an external direction I am utterly listless.

It is really frustrating for me because I would like to play video games or read at the very least. I have this dream of getting off disability and getting a job at a really small company writing reports or programming or whatever. I used to do it before I was diagnosed. I even have a CS degree and it is kind of morale breaking that I can’t will myself to do anything.

The metaphor I use with my therapist is that the engine is revving but the transmission won’t shift out of neutral. In over two years of therapy it has yet to make any difference. I want to quit that too, but the people around me think it is soooo good for me that they even pay for it.

I get a lot from SSDI, but its barely enough to live a lifestyle close to what I had before my diagnosis. I have an apartment, a car, a computer and internet. I can afford healthy food. I even manage to save $100 every month. I don’t need more than that, but it would be nice to be able to afford dental work, or god forbid medical care should I need it. A hospitalization costs $1600 by the time I am finished paying the doctors. My medication choices aren’t shaped by what is best for me, but rather what is generic. I want to be able to save something for when I am old. All these things are impossible without making more money. To make more money I have to find motivation. My doctor says my lack of motivation is my disease. My disease makes it impossible for me to attain my goals and it is depressing.

I just wish people would understand. I get a lot of ■■■■ because I don’t talk to myself or have crippling delusions. I am still just as broken in every way that counts, but people think I should be doing exactly what I was doing before I got sick now that I am on medication. People don’t understand it because its not something you can see or observe. Its not something that the medication treats (if it isn’t the medicine causing this). People have told me that I am stealing from them before.

Its just something that has been distressing me.

What are your thoughts.

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I understand this, it’s hard not to feel lazy when you don’t work like a lot of other people. My father in law doesn’t like that fact that i don’t work. But my partner always just explains it as i’m in early retirement. I too have “lazy” days where all i do is surf the internet or watch tv. I want to be able to see if i can read a book now that i’ve become sort of stable. I dream of day where i can go back to school and get off SSI to get a job as something anything other than be on “early retirement”;.

i have the same problem with motivation. the reason is different but the effect is the same. some days i fight it and do lots round the house. most days i can’t seem to move at all and i hate it. it’s like a kind of paralysis for me. my mind wants to get up and do things but my body tells me i’m not allowed. very odd. some days i can disobey my programming and i will do stuff, other days i totally give in to it and do nothing. i hate myself for being so weak sometimes but then i remind myself that a fully grown man couldn’t take what i’ve been through and come out unscathed so i’m actually doing ok. just would like to b busier is all. some people on here do less than me every day so compared to them i’m doing well but it’s not enough for me. today i have done nothing. unless u count going out for doughnuts and a kfc. in a minute i have to go and get some milk and apart from a bath, that will b the extent of my day and i hate it. must do better in the future. i too am on disability, get my rent paid, free dental and medical, free drugs. but i feel a failure. both my parents and my brother were and are successful people. i want to b the same. i know where ur coming from. apart from a torture induced mini episode at the beginning of last year i’ve been pretty stable for 3 years. i still have voices but i don’t let them lead me anymore so i don’t buy into the ■■■■■■■■ now. my mum thinks it’s time for me to get a part time job but i can’t do that as i don’t have the motivation to even clean my house properly let alone to do all the things to get to work everyday.

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Unlike you, I have low negative symptoms, in fact the only negative symptom I had was being asocial at the time of my diagnosis. I had one friend at the time and didn’t try to make new ones. Meds treat positive symptoms, and as a psych major I know what you are experiencing- you simply cannot find motivation to do much. I’ve read all about it.

I am sedated and tired from my meds but I drink caffeine and that brings me back to normal. Without caffeine I wouldnt even eat breakfast. I still sleep a ton and take naps during the day when I can.

Don’t blame yourself- it IS a symptom on this disease and it is one of the most crippling. Finding an occupation is maybe the hardest thing you could do. I myself take special preworkout supplements loaded with stimulants before I go to the gym (I am an amateur powerlifter) and I drink strong dark black coffee before school every morning.

Some of it is the meds, when I first started each of my meds, I was very amotivational and sedated, but by body adjusted to a degree and now I don’t have practical narcolepsy like I did when I started my current meds regiment. Again, I run on caffeine to this day, I just had a black coffee and I usually start the day with a black coffee while surfing this site.

Just try to gradually set little goals for yourself. It can be anything from more errands to household chores, (which you said you already do). I find myself vegetating with my laptop a whole lot, and I have LOW negative symptoms. I don’t like running errands and I have to force myself to do them. I don’t like showering and brushing my teeth and shaving but I force myself to. It’s really about willpower, wanting to change, and also help from coffee.

I wrote a paper on caffeine and schizophrenics. We are known to drink it like water. Just sharing a little fact with you.

Public awareness of our condition is improving every day, but most people still think schizophrenia JUST means positive symptoms (hallucinations, delusions, disorganized speech and behavior). Don’t let others’ ignorance affect your sense of self-worth. You live with an illness that is known to make people kill themselves or end up on the streets. Be proud to be a person with schizophrenia, not a complete schizophrenic, I like to think that there is a difference. People with schizophrenia manage their illness and live with it, schizophrenics are controlled by their illness. That’s my little thing I like to say about the illness. I used to be a schizophrenic, now I call myself a person who has schizophrenia.


Antipsychotics cause laziness and low motivation. When i was psychotic and i was not on med, i had the best motivation and energy to do things. Once i was put on med i became lazy, so if my doc tells me its a symptom of schizo, i will shovel the med to his ass so he will see the difference with med.

Being lazy while people have no problems towards it is no problem at all, actually I do nothing in the house, neither before the relapse or after, it’s my nature, and maybe one of my problems that I can’t hold responsibility of a house, like getting married and have children, but my job seems to work for me, I have to sit behind the computer all the time, I don’t need to move a lot, except for bathroom breaks, and in the house my parents don’t seem to have much problems about me not helping in the house shores. I don’t have much stamina like normal people, I get tired faster.
it’s okay for you if it’s okay with everyone, I think it’s our nature…


Thanks all. I do drink coffee otherwise I would never get out of bed in the morning.

As far as it being the meds, I thought it might be so I stopped them and that was a disaster. Then I met my girlfriend. She has bipolar disorder and takes the exact same dose of the exact same medication and she has no problems with motivation. She has a good job, she has a bustling social life, and she has goals she works on everyday. She improved her Spanish just by using a phone app every day for the past four months. In those same four months I have clocked in about twenty hours worth of video games and a short book.

I am just frustrated. It feels like I should be able to will myself out of it. My brain is broken and I can’t even see how it is broken from the inside, other people have to tell me. Oh well. Thanks for the support guys!

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I needed meds to kick start my upward spiral. It took a different meds before I had the motivation to go to more therapy. I know it’s takes motivation to get out and go to the doc, but when you make it, you might want to let him know your in this deep.

Doc’s know when positive symptoms are happening, but they never seem to get told when negative symptoms are happening. Is there a way your girlfriend could call someone like a a visiting nurse or volunteer care worker to come and help?

I know how awful I got and how depressed I got. But I could not break through until my meds got changed, and then I had the energy to take a walk and feel better, and go to therapy, and then do more stuff. But it had to start somewhere. I feel for you. I hate negative symptoms and I pray never to slide into them again.

I tried to find just one thing a day to get up for. Just one walk around the house. But I had help and encouragement. I couldn’t have broken out alone. I hope your girlfriend can help somehow.

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I experience this but can’t describe what it is.

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well what is your “official” diagnoses?
it sounds too me like a major depression or a burn out.

Schizophrenia AFAIK.

ok, but you dont have delusions, voices,paranoid thinking, or intrusive thoughts?
why would they diagnose you then SZ?

My meds make me slow and tired. I tried reducing them on my own so I would have more energy. All I got was worse symptoms. I didn’t know I was having problems, but others around me did. My doc says that we can reduce the dosage together, not by myself. It took a few weeks to feel better after that failed experiment. Won’t do that again.

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Last time I tried to tamper with my meds, I went psychotic and nearly ended in hospital again. I quit playing that game with out a goal keeper too.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts/worries. I have a lot of the same worries. I don’t hear voices or have delusions either. Not on a daily basis. I only really experience that during my “breakdowns” or during psychosis. But I suffer from negative symptoms now. I was doing a lot better when I was employed a couple of months ago and had less time to think and worry and waste away the day. But I eventually got fired, mostly due to my inability to form friendships and my social awkwardness I believe.

I am now on disability as well and I hate that. I feel like I can offer more than just lying around. It eats at me that I can’t be productive for long periods of time. But when I try, I have another episode of psychosis and I feel like I’m right back at square one again. So all in all, I’m glad for disability.

I don’t know how to overcome all the negative symptoms of this illness. I haven’t figured that out yet. Coffee doesn’t really do it for me. But I often wonder if it is the disease or the medication or a combination that causes them. I think I just need to find hobbies that I get lost in. Although, I have no motivation to explore what those might be. Hopefully, doctors will one day be able to treat the negative symptoms that are involved with schizophrenia. Or I’ll snap out of it.

I’ve also wondered many times if it is the ilness or the meds causing the negative symptoms. But if I think back to the time I was psychotic and still working, I remember how I use to go and sleep during my lunch hour and how I took small breaks during the day to try and cope. I’ve had this negative symptoms before I was diagnosed. I became socially withdrawn and to paralysed to do anything. I went and talk to my employer about my condition before I got fired for my incapacity so I went on disability. . Today my delusions and paranoia is largely under control with the meds but the negative symptoms are still there.

I lost a career in architecture at the age of 35 (16 years ago), it allowed me also to make quite a bit on SSDI, but I have vices that keep me poor…don’t beat yourself up for not doing much during the day, it is the life we live on disability…too much time on our hands and that leaves us feeling “lazy” but I don’t call it “lazy” we just have too much time on our hands…I listen to music on Spotify and CD’s during the day, hardly ever watching T.V. unless it’s a movie…which is rare…I get my news from friends and my ex, whom I talk to daily…the thing is, you aren’t “lazy”…just need more to do…which is very hard to do…I am thinking if I stop smoking I can have more money to paint at home more in my art…just an idea…by the way, I can’t read books anymore…no concentration, same reason I can’t return to my field…

For the first 1,5 years I had sz I searched for solutions to this motivation problem I had. I tried sarcosine for it but it had little effect, I still take it but right now for memory. At first I was put on a SSRI, that had some very moderate effect but made me terribly apathedic (lots of people have that reaction). Still recovering from that 1,5 years later. Right now I’m taking Bupropion XL for my motivation and it really helps. I wish I could take a higher dose though, (300 mg instead of 150 mg, but can’t because I have ringing in the ears from it and it would probably get worse) I think then I would have as much motivation as I did pre-disease. My doctor was hesitant to prescribe it because in rare cases it can make people more psychotic. Bupropion is supposed to be the best AD for motivation out of the newer ones. I also take NAC, but don’t find it terribly effective except for depression.

I’ve had a lot of luck the past week with motivation. My therapist said that an object in motion tends to stay in motion. I started going to a coffee shop and walking with my girlfriend for an hour and a half every day. By the third day I started playing video games again instead of just browsing the net.

I guess the weather just got me in a really bad rut. Now that it is kind of warm I can be active, which encourages me to be even more active.