Having Bipolar Disorder and co-morbid piggy backers are not easy to live with. Some days, of course, are much better than others, but overall, dealing with mental disorders becomes easier as I learn more skills to combat the negative affect they can have. I have had some form of depression and bipolar disorder for as far back as I can remember. I think I really noticed it when I was about 11 years of age… and it has never let up since. Sometimes I have gone for a short time with no symptoms, but it is short lived. Some form of the disorder shows itself at all times whether it is mania, anxiety, depression, irritability… you name it.
So how do I cope?
One thing I have found SUPER important for me… and it helps others as well… is to have a very regular schedule. Go to bed at the same time every night, wake up at the same time every day, workout, spend time with friends and family, eat properly and don’t skip meals. All of these little things are very important. Now, I cannot control every single moment of the day… but these things mentioned are within my control so I make sure to use that to my benefit.
Sleep is so very important as well. Just two sleepless nights and I can be thrown into mania… and what is inevitable after mania?? Depression. Dreaded depression.
I do my best to keep my ‘action’ plan updated… this is a plan on what to do if I hit a manic moment or a depressive moment that seems larger than life… this plan is in place to protect me. Simple things on it… talk to a loved one, take walks outdoors, word in my DBT and Bipolar workbooks, distract myself with movies… etc. I am sure you get my point.
There are many ways that we can combat this disorder, and though we will always have it, we don’t always have to be at war with it.
How do you cope??