My friend is depressed but too lazy to do anything

This article will discuss what might be happening with your friend that is depressed and that might seem too lazy to do anything. For that, the article will do a brief explanation of what depression is, and what are its symptoms.

Aside from that, the article will discuss what ways you can help your friend with depression.

My friend is depressed but too lazy to do anything

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If your friend is depressed but seems too lazy to do anything, it might be just that. It just seems like they are lazy. There is a lot they are going through emotionally. It might seem, from the outside, that they are being lazy. But in reality, they might be experiencing intense symptoms of depression. 

To make it easier for you to understand if it is depression or laziness, let’s discuss some behaviors people with depression have that are easily mixed with being lazy.

Spending too much time on their phone 

When people are depressed, they tend to have many negative thoughts going through their minds. To cope with that, they can spend a lot of time on their phones. This can help them distract themselves.

Not taking care of the house 

Depression causes people to have a lot less energy and fatigue. This causes them to have trouble doing the simplest things. At times it can be hard to even get out of bed. Cleaning the house, or doing the dishes can be more than they can take at times. They might also feel a lot more pain, which can make it hard for them to do things.

Sleeping too much 

Even though it might seem your friend is too lazy to do anything, it is important to understand that people with depression tend to oversleep. This can happen as a way to distract from their pain, or because they feel too fatigued, and even after long hours of sleep, they still feel tired.

Resting a lot 

Resting or taking breaks between tasks can help a person that is depressed to feel more energized. Although people will think they are being lazy, it is a coping strategy so they can be able to do the things they need to.

Staying in bed a long time after they wake up 

People with depression can stay in bed for a while before getting up. This is a way they can think about the things they need to do during the day, curb their anxiety about it, and come up with a plan to do it.

Neglect self-care 

Your friend with depression that is depressed, but seems too lazy, can neglect self-care. They lose interest in everything, and in this, it also includes self-care. They might not care how they look or consider they need to change clothes. 

Not going to work or school 

When depressed a person has so little energy that keeping up to their responsibilities is impossible. They can let go of their school work or their job, little by little, to the point in which it might just seem easier to give up on it.

Eating unhealthy

People that are depressed won’t worry about eating healthy food. They lose the perspective of caring for themselves and their health.

If you have noticed some of these signs on your friends, it might be time to inform yourself better about what depression is. And through it, you can think of ways to be closer to them.

What depression is

Depression is a mental illness, not a choice. Nowadays it affects around 5% of the world’s population. Depression causes people to feel intense sadness, and a negative view of the world and themselves.

It causes the person to feel fatigued, empty,  less energetic, and with less ability to focus. Not only that, it makes the person lose interest in things they used to love. To be diagnosed with depression, the person needs to have its symptoms for more than two weeks.

Every person experiences depression in their way. The symptoms change their intensity depending on the type of depression. But the main symptoms of depression are:

  • Change in sleeping pattern
  • Change in eating pattern
  • Hopelessness
  • Excessive crying or inability to cry even when they want to
  • Low self-esteem
  • Decreased sense of self-worth
  • Pains and headaches
  • Irritability
  • Guilt
  • Isolation
  • Self-harm
  • Thought of death and suicidal thoughts

In knowing all that, it might be possible to affirm that your friend is not lazy. Depression can affect them in all dimensions of their life, and sometimes it can be hard to try and do even the little things.

How to help your friend that has depression

Now that you understand what is happening to your friend, let’s discuss some ways you can help your friend cope with depression.

Focus on your self-care 

To be a part of the support network of someone with depression, you need to take care of yourself. This process can be intense, and sometimes frustrating. 

To be able to maintain your mental health and your sense of individuality while supporting your friend will turn you into an even better caregiver.

Understand your feelings 

Taking care of someone with depression can have many ups and downs, along with focusing on your self-care, being a part of a caregiver support group might be a good idea.

Through it, you will be in touch with people that are going through the same thing as you are. And in it, you can all share experiences to deal with the frustrations that can come from caring for someone with depression.

Be supportive 

When a person has depression, you might want to help them as much as you can. There might be an urge to offer quick solutions. But the most important thing when being the caregiver of someone with depression is to be supportive.

Be open to listening, be patient, and let them know you are there for them. This can make them feel more connected, and not as worthless as they imagined.

Understand that it is not personal 

People with depression can have mood swings, they are also more irritable, and can try to shut themselves out. When this happens, try to not take it personally. Although they are distancing themselves from you, what is causing it is depression.

Avoid judgment

People with depression already feel guilty enough about their behavior. They are frustrated about how their life is at the moment. So don’t pile up on that and judge or blame them for not being able to do something.

At times, cleaning the house or even getting out of bed seems impossible. Be supportive of them at this moment. And maybe offer ways they can do things more simply. So they don’t feel overwhelmed by the activities.

Offer a positive view 

You might feel like your friend is expressing how hopeless they feel. The negative aspect of their life can be taking over everything. When this happens, try to be the person that will bring something positive.

It shouldn’t be the toxic positivity, but try to remind them how their life was not always about depression, and it won’t be like this forever. You can go back to happy memories you shared, and even cause some laughs.

Love them

Feeling loved and connected at this time can be life-changing. It may be what gives them the energy to keep fighting and not give into depression.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQ): How can I help my friend that is depressed but is too lazy to do anything?

Can being lazy make me depressed?

Being lazy can be related to depression. If a person is lazy for too long, and it seems like you lost interest in doing things you love, and you don’t have energy, it might mean that you are depressed. Laziness is a momentary thing, it usually passes after a while, but if it goes on, it might be important to look for help.

Is laziness a mental disorder?

No, being lazy is not a mental disorder. It is something momentary, or it can be related to your personality. But the lack of energy or motivation to do things can be a sign of many mental health conditions.

Because of that, when you realize that you have been lazy frequently, you should ask yourself if it is just that, or if you are also experiencing other feelings. Ask yourself if you have become sadder, less interested in things in general, or even if you have trouble sleeping.

Is it normal to be lazy? 

Yes, being lazy is normal, the problem is when it becomes something that takes you out of your routine or interests. If you understand laziness has become too intense, or if it is followed by sadness, negative thoughts, or losing interest in things you used to love doing, it might be important to look for professional help.

How do I know the difference between laziness and burnout? 

When you are lazy, it is a momentary thing. But after some time you feel ready to do other things. When you are going through burnout, it means that the things that burned you out don’t bring you joy anymore.

Let’s take your job as an example. You can be lazy about going to work one day. It is a momentary thing, in which the person doesn’t feel like going to work. But if you are burned out, you feel exhausted, and like you could sleep forever.

You completely lose interest in your job, and it is not something people just brush off. You can feel like you just want your energy and inspiration back. Being burned out makes you feel like you have nothing left to give.

Can anxiety make you lazy?

Anxiety can cause you to constantly worry and overthink situations. It can make you feel agitated. Anxiety doesn’t cause people to become lazy. What happens is that people with anxiety might choose to distance themselves from people and their activities.

Because of anxiety, a person can get scared that they will be judged by others in social situations, or that something bad might happen. And as a way to prevent these things from happening, they can shut off. Avoid going to events or being around people. And that, for people around them, may seem like they have become lazy.

If someone with anxiety is going through this, it might be important to reassure them that those judgments or negative thoughts are mostly in their mind, that in reality, you would be happy for them to join you in some activities.


The article discussed what are the differences between being lazy and depressed as a way to inform people that depression is not a choice. Not only that, but the article also explained what depression is. And how you may help your friend that has depression.

If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write it in the section below.


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