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9 Tips to Help You Cope with Bipolar Disorder

 

Bipolar Disorder is a daily fight inside your mind. In an instant your world goes from happy to bleak, with no warning whatsoever. We might not know exactly how you feel, but we are definitely here to support you. At our offices, we’ve seen many people come through our door going through every variation of Bipolar Disorder. So, we’ve come up with some of the best tips and pieces of advice to help you get through the darkest of times, and prepare for them as well.

Below, you’ll find 9 things you can do to cope with Bipolar Disorder. While doing these things won’t make your condition go away, they can definitely help you be prepared for the worst of times.

 1. Learn as much as possible about your illness

There are so many online sources that can provide information. There's so much that you need to know about what you are dealing with. That helps you to decrease the stigma associated with your condition. If you don’t know about Bipolar Disorder, the  surprise of the unexpected episodes and symptoms alone can be overwhelming.

If you receive treatment with medication, you need to be educated how the medication works. Know how to take the medication, why it's necessary and what it does.

2. Make light of situations that can make you depressed

Who says mental health has to be serious all the time? Not David Granirer, who is a counselor, stand-up comedian and mental health keynote speaker. Through David's program Stand Up For Mental Health, he uses comedy to "give mental health consumers a powerful voice and help reduce the stigma and discrimination around mental illness". You can check out some of their videos here: http://standupformentalhealth.com/videos/

 3. Having a mental illness does not define you or your future.

Here's a trick that can change your train of thought in an instant: Stop referring to yourself as "Bipolar". When you define yourself as the mental illness you are struggling with, you are subconsciously telling yourself that you're not allowed to be anything else. Telling yourself that you are Bipolar is telling yourself that you're not allowed to be happy, outgoing, attractive, positive, selfless, energetic, healthy, creative, or beautiful. If that's what you want to be, then why not? Unfortunately, we cannot wish mental illnesses away, but we don't have to let them define who we are. Next time your mental illness comes up, don't say "I am Bipolar". Say "My name is ___, and I have Bipolar Disorder." This works with anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and every other mental illness out there.

4. Realize you're not the only one.

Building off of our previous tip, know that others have gone through what you are currently going through. And we're not talking about just anyone; famous celebrities and people who have changed the world had Bipolar Disorder as well! People like:

Russell Brand,

Winston Churchill,

Vincent Van Gogh,

Frank Sinatra,

Pete Wentz (Fall Out Boy),

Carrie Fisher

Nina Simone,

Isaac Newton,

just to name a few!

5. Communicate with those around you.

When you’re going through an episode of depression or anxiety or mania, it’s hard to let people know exactly how to help you. Take advantage of periods of normalcy and let those closest to you, like family, spouses, or friends, know how to best help you in your most difficult moments.

6. Don't blame yourself or anything else for your predicament. When you develop a condition of Bipolar disorder, it's often a family condition or environment that triggers Bipolar Disorder. Don't feel guilty; it is not your fault.

7. There's a risk of having more difficulty when you use inappropriate techniques to deal with your symptoms. We're talking about drugs and alcohol here. Use professionals who have been trained to deal with what you go through.

8. The more you are motivated in dealing with your condition, the better you will be able to manage symptoms.

9. Know that each episode doesn’t last forever. You WILL make it through!

 

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