When I was 17, I lifted weights for months on end. I structured ny exercises into sets and reps. I followed my workout religiously. 2 hours straight every 2 days. I didn't do lower body weight lifting because those exercises kept cramping me up every time (but I did play football for 30 minutes every school day at lunch, for fun).
The workouts didn't help. I couldn't feel fear, anxiety, happiness or pleasure. Orgasms became almost non-existent when I turned 17, despite having high testosterone (checked by blood tests). That same year, after months of lifting, I became physically 50% stronger, but exactly the same mentally/emotionally.
I can't bring happy thoughts into existence any more than I can force myself to feel love for someone that I don't (like how couples grow out of loving each other and can't mentally force the love back into existence).
Today, music has no effect on me anymore (it used to be orgasmic), I haven’t felt love in 7 years, video games/action movies give zero excitement. Comedy has no impact on me at all anymore (I used to love it more than any other film/TV genre).
Drugs like weed, caffeine, opiates, and stimulants don't help (and I've only ever had a weed habit and caffeine habit, when they used to help). Half the time amphetamines and opiates do nothing at all (I just sit there as if I just took homeopathic meds), and the other half they put me on an emotional roller coaster (without the happiness/pleasure). That’s right, I got sad and violent from a shot of morphine in the ER, and
I've also gotten sleepy from adderall and meth before. Ritalin made me incapable of feeling pleasure or emotion, and that was at age 13, when I was still normal.
Alcohol kind of works for 30 minutes, but I get a hangover after 2 drinks, and 1 drink lasts 1 hour tops. Anti anxiety meds make my body sore and weak, and make me grouchy (always did, even before the depression).
I DONT FEEL SAD; I FEEL NOTHING!
I often laugh at jokes or pretend to be enjoying a movie when I'm with friends or at a party, but its just a mask/face I'm putting up; there is never any emotion behind it. Until I turned 16, things weren't this way. In fact, suppressing negative emotions is part of how I became like this: I supressed the bad ones, and now I don't need to supress anymore; I have nothing left to supress, good or bad. P
Although you will immediately brush off the idea, still, volunteering for some worthy cause to help others would get you moving in the right direction on two of the necessities of life, a sense of purpose, and a healthy connection with others. Beware of self-focus when you do volunteer. Self-focus is the road to ruin in any situation.. For instance, self-focus means analyzing your feelings constantly while you are volunteering and thinking to yourself "Why should I bother doing this, this isn't making me feel any better."
When volunteering keep turning your focus away from how you are feeling and concentrate, instead, on what you are doing or what somebody else is saying.The way you make other people important to you is to make an investment in them, to listen to what they are saying, to see how you can join them in some endeavor or help them in some small way to make their lives better for that moment.
Look around you and see what small task continually presents itself for you to concentrate on instead of concentrating on yourself. There is always some small next thing to do. Do the first thing near you, the second task will present itself. Most depression comes not from emptiness but from lack of fulness.
A. B. Curtiss