Sloth (sometimes called acedia) is laziness -- particularly when it concerns prayer and spiritual life. It centers on doing nothing or doing just trivial things. Sloth is always wanting to rest and relax, with no desire or intention of making a sacrifice or doing something for others. It's an aversion to work -- physical, mental, and spiritual. Sloth inevitably leads to lukewarmness and tepidity and then deteriorates into disinterest, discouragement, and finally despair. Sloth breeds indifference, which prevents joy from ever being experienced.
Spiritual laziness can only be overcome by practicing the virtue of diligence, which is the habit of keeping focused and paying attention to the work at hand -- be it the work of employment or the work of God. Diligent prayer and diligent worship can make you more reverent. Diligence in all things ensures that you don't become idle ...
Catholicism For Dummies by John TrigilioRecommended reading: Back to Virtue by Peter Kreeft. He examines the virtues in depth and also looks specific virtues and Beatitudes as antidotes to each of the seven deadly sins. Not a new concept but one that he writes about superbly (as always).
I have to say that, upon finishing this little review of these seven core sins I was surprised to find definite identification with two of them specifically. For the moment at least that has resulted in an identification of them in my daily life and an effort to move away from them through practicing the virtue prescribed as a remedy. Perhaps this is a sign to myself that whenever I feel too complacent it is time again to read through the list of sins and virtues to see what else I find.