Report: What Colleges Should Know About Teletherapy and How to Pick the Best Telehealth Vendor for Your Students
There is no excerpt because this is a protected post....
If you are feeling uninterested in your relationships, unmotivated at work, uninterested in school, or just feeling empty and you don’t know why, you may be feeling apathy. Sometimes, apathetic feelings are a result of things we can recognize and change—for example, we’re feeling bored at work or we’re no longer attracted to someone we once felt attracted to. But sometimes apathy is a symptom of a larger issue we’re facing, like trauma, grief, or an underlying mental health condition.
If you are feeling empty and apathetic, it’s important to understand where those feelings come from and what you can do to change them.
Apathy may make you feel like you are empty or feeling nothing, but it can cause noticeable changes, such as:
You may be asking yourself, “Why do I feel empty?” There are many reasons for why you may be struggling with apathy.
If you have a negative self-image, struggle with low self-esteem or feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, or incompetence, you may begin to feel like your life doesn’t matter. This can be a sign of suicidal thoughts or behaviors, so if you begin to feel this way, it’s important to tell a friend or an adult you trust, and be on the lookout for other changes in your mood and behaviors.
Experiencing an event like the loss of a loved one, financial difficulties, getting laid off or failing out of school can make you feel lost, sad, scared, or isolated—and may make you question the point of living. If you don’t cope with your trauma, you may start to feel apathetic and disconnected from your everyday life as a way to handle the pain.
An event doesn’t need to be traumatic in order to trigger feelings of apathy. If you’ve experienced a recent change, like changing jobs or changing schools, a breakup, or a fight with a friend, apathy may be a sign that you’re having trouble adjusting to your new situation.
When we don’t feel like our hard work at school, at work, or at home is being acknowledged or rewarded, it’s easy to feel resentful of the people who are not acknowledging us. If you don’t practice self-care while you’re working hard, you can start to feel exhausted and overworked. If you’re feeling overworked, burned out, or unfulfilled by your current lifestyle, you may start to shut down and feel apathetic.
We want rewards for the hard work we do, and one of those rewards is feeling stimulated and interested in our own lives. If you are feeling like you’re in a rut at work, in your classes, or in certain relationships, and you can’t immediately leave or change your situation, apathy can quickly take over.
If there is no apparent cause—for example, you have not gone through a sudden major tragedy or other significant life change—and you still have prolonged feelings of apathy and emptiness that you can’t shake, it’s a good idea to ask for support or reach out to a mental health professional, especially if feeling apathetic is interfering with other areas of your life. Apathy can be a symptom of a larger mental health issue, or related to other mental and physical health issues.
Apathy often occurs at the same time as other aspects of mental health conditions:
Apathy, anhedonia, and lethargy are all symptoms of depression. If you are feeling a combination of these symptoms, reach out to a mental health professional, or text HOME to 741-741 for a free, confidential conversation with a trained counselor any time of day.
.If you or someone you know needs help right now:
If you are worried about your apathetic feelings, a good place to start is by asking yourself some questions about what is causing you to feel apathetic, either on your own or with the help of a mental health professional:
Identifying potential triggers of your apathy can help you avoid those triggers—or, if you can’t change them, learn how to react to them differently with healthier coping strategies. If you recognize that your apathy is linked to an event in your life, it may pass after you adjust to your new circumstance. You can also address your apathy by finding a new goal to focus on, like making new friends or searching for a new job.
If at any point your apathetic feelings lead to thinking suicidal thoughts, such as “What’s the point of being alive?” or “No one would miss me if I died,” it’s time to tell a parent, teacher, or therapist. Any suicidal thoughts, or thoughts about hurting yourself, should be assessed with support from a mental health professional.
If you have noticed a friend or loved one is exhibiting signs of apathy or showing a lack of interest in your relationship, tell them what you’ve noticed, express your concern, and offer your support without judging them. If they tell you that their apathetic feelings have included suicidal thoughts, reach out to a trusted adult who can support them or call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 800-273-8255.
If you or someone you know needs to talk to someone right now, text, call, or chat 988 for a free confidential conversation with a trained counselor 24/7.
You can also contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741-741.
If this is a medical emergency or if there is immediate danger of harm, call 911 and explain that you need support for a mental health crisis.