Avolition: Any Takers?


I was talking to a friend of mine the other day, and he touched on something that shared my sentiments.

He said “Someone needs to write a book on Motivation”. I agree with a hearty amen!

Whenever someone does venture to write such a title, they should also consider writing a book on “Avolition”. If depression is a common struggle, then avolition would be just as common. Avolition is one of the worst symptoms of depression. It’s one of those “odd filters” .

The DSM provides a pretty simple description of it, saying that it is a “psychological state” characterized by a “general lack of drive to perform activities or pursue meaningful goals”.

When I read that definition, I almost laughed at the brevity of the term. After that I nearly wept, because the term was insufficient to communicate the gravity of the actual experience.

All this to say, I neither laughed or wept. I didn’t have it in me. That’s Avolition.

Avolition is a characteristic of people who suffer depression. It’s that affective “flattening” of emotion. It’s when people say “I can’t feel anything”, but no one hears, because it gets absorbed into the black hole of the perception of apathy.  Avolitionists can’t tell whether or not you care, so they stop trying to speak. They lack energy as it is, so they aren’t going to spend it all on the treadmill of purposelessness.

I mean, who would want to be around such a downer? Avolitionism knew you’d think something along those lines. They’re mind readers. Like Micah, they say; “Woe is me…all of (the people) lie in wait for bloodshed; Each of them hunts the other with a net.” (Micah 7:1-2) Paranoid much? What’s their deal?

Avolitionists are wearied by their own cynicism.
Tired of being ignored, they remove themselves from social gatherings
Tired of being misunderstood,  They quit explaining.
Avolition prophecies rejection, and so they set out to prove its fulfillment

Thus says the LORD: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the LORD.

He is like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see any good come. He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness, in an uninhabited salt land. (Jer 17:5-6)

Avolition knows this from experience: “Cursed is the man!”  That will preach! If anything avolition needs to be carried to God’s Word to complete the thought. You see, Jeremiah 17:5-6 anticipates Jeremiah 17:7-8;

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.”

This is the beginning of the remedy to avolition.


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