Why am I so tired and unwilling to do anything? 10 common causes

We’ve probably all or almost all felt exhausted and helpless at some point. This state of lack of energy is very unpleasant and leads us to miss opportunities and even to be disabling.

But not having energy or motivation does not mean that on a cognitive level we cannot worry about what is happening to us and ask ourselves its cause. ** Why am I so tired and unwilling to do anything? **

Throughout this article we will try to establish some of the possible causes that can lead us to these sensations.

    “Why am I so tired? Understand this problem

    Often our level of activation responds to strange logics that we just don’t understand. Even at times in our lives when we feel like we are eating right and resting for the hours it takes for our bodies to maintain and repair themselves at the right rate, there are many people who at some point in time have ask themselves, “why am I so tired, if I am doing all that is necessary to be well?”

    This is usually due to a combination of biological and psychological aspects. For example, leading a relatively sedentary life weakens our bodies, making us less prepared when we eventually need to put in the extra effort. Thus, behavior and the body influence each other.

    On the other hand, there are a variety of pathologies that produce fatigue as one of its symptoms. This is usually due to the low efficiency with which the body manages the available energy, because the priority is to fight against the health problem.

    However, there are a number of health problems that deserve their own name, and which are often the cause of this feeling of fatigue. It’s asthenia, and we’ll find out in the next few lines.

    Apathy and asthenia: basic concepts

    Before we begin to assess the causes that can lead us to extreme fatigue and a lack of desire and motivation to do things, it may help to briefly mention what this fatigue and feeling of listlessness entails. To begin with, we must keep in mind that both sensations are deeply linked to our state of energy, in addition to being able to be influenced by mood, biology or the set of experiences that we have had.

    As for fatigue, it is a state of discomfort and weakness which, although generally undesirable, is natural and which in normative situations has adaptive meaning and function. And is that when our body or our mind uses large amounts of energy, the body warns that our resources are about to be depleted. This leads us under normal conditions to try to regain our strength, whether it is to sleep, eat or get away from what is causing us discomfort. This fatigue can lead to back-asthenia, in which we feel extremely tired and our action becomes impossible (even in activities that did not cost us before).

    The urge to do nothing corresponds to the syndrome called apathy: it is a state of partial or total loss of interest and motivation in which the person ends up being unable to act spontaneously and with initiative. This condition usually results in not only a lack of motivation, but a decrease in the ability to concentrate and pay attention (which is usually hampered by ruminating) and a loss of the ability to make decisions and reason objectively.

    While this does not necessarily imply sadness or a feeling of suffering, it is common for it to occur alongside degraded moods and hopelessness. To a maximum extent, we could speak of abulia.

    Common causes of listlessness and asthenia

    It is possible that at times we have asked ourselves the question that gives the title to this article, doubting the reasons we may have for being so lacking in the energy and motivation to act.

    The truth is that the causes will be different for each case, in addition it may be due to an interaction between several elements. However, generally speaking, some of the main reasons that can lead us to a situation or image of apathy and asthenia can be as follows.

    1. Lack of sound

    A possible cause of these sensations is the lack of a sufficiently long and quality period of rest. Our body and mind are constantly expending energy, so they need to rest to repair themselves and gain strength to take action.

    If we don’t get enough sleep, we will find ourselves unable to surrender and eventually reach a state of lack of motivation for action.

    2. Physical exhaustion

    Still similar to the above, the truth is that a second possible cause of listlessness and asthenia is reaching a state of exhaustion, whether mental or physical.

    Depleting our energy reserves will cause two sensations. However, it is also possible that even though our energy is low, there is a desire and a will to act.

    3. Anemia

    The third of the possible causes of fatigue and poor appetite is in food. We’ve said before that we need to rest, but our body is not a perpetual cell phone that can keep functioning: it needs nutrients and oxygen for our cells (including those associated with motivation. and control of our energy) can function.

    Thus, states of food deficiency or lack of certain nutrients can lead to a state of exhaustion and total motivation.

    4. Lack of activity

    Another of the possible reasons why we may feel low motivation and desire to do things is precisely related to lack of activity. Not doing anything usually leads many people to become frustrated or tired.

    Outraged, if we are used to an inactive life, the idea of ​​reactivating and starting to do activities, Sports, work or even going out to enjoy free time becomes much more difficult and difficult.

    5. Medical diseases

    In addition to the aforementioned anemia, different types of diseases can lead to listlessness and asthenia.

    Among them, we can find those related to the endocrine system, such as hyper / hypothyroidism or diabetes. (If there is hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia). Others are related to pain or physical energy level, such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, or arthritis. Heart, lung (eg COPD), liver or kidney problems can also affect this situation.

    6. Feeling of lack of control over what is happening

    A possible cause of fatigue and lack of desire to do things can come from our perceptions or beliefs about our own ability to influence the environment.

    People who consider that their actions have no meaning or effect on a given reality will tend to reduce their behavior and abandon the action by adopting a passive posture. The motivation and the drive to act are lost (because nothing is supposed to change or will be achieved with it), and the resulting frustration generates a wear and tear on the energy level.

    7. Frustration and lack of goals

    The absence of illusions, goals and vital goals, or the frustration or inability to achieve them (especially if we are faced with a fundamental or much desired goal or goal), is also a common cause of apathy and feeling of lack of energy and fatigue.

    Not knowing what to do or not being able to define an action plan leads us to a state of anxiety and dissatisfaction, Which, if maintained over time or becomes commonplace and prevalent in different situations, can lead to a feeling of helplessness and a lack of control over one’s life.

    8. Traumatic experience

    In addition to the above, among the different causes that can generate fatigue and lack of desire, there is the fact of experiencing traumatic situations. In this case, we can talk about a typical situation of what happens during a period of mourning, For example, when we lose a loved one or when we perceive that we are losing capacity.

    These are also symptoms that can appear in post-traumatic stress disorder, although hypervigilance, tension, and re-experimentation are usually prevalent.

    9. Stress

    In everyday life we ​​find a lot of demands at the social level. We must be effective and efficient in our work, proactive, competitive …

    All of this can lead to stressful situations and anxiety., Who is maintained over time can end up saturating the person and trigger a loss of motivation and great physical and mental fatigue.

      10. Depression

      In addition to all of the above, another reason that fatigue and listlessness can occur can be related to issues such as depression.

      In fact, some of the possible symptoms are precisely fatigue / feeling tired or listless, as well as more characteristic symptoms, but can also cause these feelings such as sadness or loss of ability to feel satisfaction and pleasure. with what we once loved.

      How can this feeling be alleviated?

      We have seen common causes of fatigue and unwillingness to act. But beyond what generated it, what many of those who are asked this question probably want to know is how to solve it.

      In this question, it is essential in the first place to try to identify the specific cause: it is not the same thing that these symptoms appear to us to have pulmonary emphysema as to have gone through the death of a loved one or of suffer from depression. To help with this identification, we will need to assess whether something has happened in the present or in the past that affects us emotionally (or something that reminds us of a misfortune or a previous problem). Blood tests or other medical checks may be necessary (especially in vulnerable populations), as this can be a symptom of certain illnesses.

      Knowing how long this state lasts is also helpful: if it is sporadic or if it is something that has continued over time. In general, the greater the continuity, the greater the need to seek help or a solution.

      Counseling and therapy

      As possible ways to resolve this feeling in general, it is advisable to establish or normalize the periods of sleep and to maintain a balanced intake according to the needs of our body. Finding enjoyable and enjoyable activities and formulating realistic and not overly demanding schedules is also a useful method. Writing down thoughts can also help us ease the discomfort at a time that can give us clues about possible causes.

      Another alternative is to practice relaxation techniques, especially if it is something derived from stress. Meditation or mindfulness can also be helpful. Finally, we need to make an assessment of our personal beliefs and demands about what we should do, be or achieve, and if necessary modify them to adapt and make them more realistic. In this sense, it may be necessary to seek professional psychological help.

      Bibliographical references:

      • Bigland-Ritchie, B .; Woods, JJ (1984). Changes in muscle contractile properties and neuronal control during human muscle fatigue. Muscle nerves. 7 (9): pages 691 to 699.
      • Jammes, Y .; Steinberg, JG; Mambrini, O .; Brégeon, F .; Delliaux, S. (2005). Chronic fatigue syndrome: assessment of increased oxidative stress and impaired muscle excitability in response to progressive exercise. J. Intern. Med. 257 (3): pages 299-310.
      • Ropper, AH; Samuels, MA (2009). Adams and Victor’s Principles of Neurology. New York: McGraw-Hill.

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