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3 Factors for Recognizing Cognitive Changes & Mood Shifts with Bipolar

Brooke Baron
December 24, 2020

I love a good mood-tracking checklist, but to recognize and address my symptoms, I look to specific factors that provide the context of impending episodes. One thing I am currently trying to sear into my memory (and others’, too!) is that bipolar is a cognitive disorder—so the symptoms are incredibly sneaky…. And, unfortunately, undetected shifts...

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Ringing in the New Year Alone

Julie A. Fast
December 15, 2020

It won’t be hard to say goodbye to 2020, given all the challenges it brought. But New Year’s Eve itself might be difficult, especially if—like me—you are single and anticipating an emotionally charged time with potential mood swings. That’s why I am planning ahead for what to do—I want to ring in the new year...

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6 Strategies for Simplifying an Uncertain Holiday Season

Sasha Kildare
December 4, 2020

We are living through a stressful, complicated, and emotionally taxing time of year—all in the midst of a world health crisis. To reduce my anxiety, I streamline and simplify. Here’s how I’ve addressed the stressors of past holidays, plus what I am doing now to reduce my tension in this particular season of uncertainty. I’m...

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Giving Myself Credit for Overcoming the Odds

Carrie Cantwell
December 1, 2020

Prior to my diagnosis of bipolar, my life was marked by constant change that elated and destroyed me over and over again. With treatment and hard work, I’ve learned how to manage my moods and find stability. It’s about time, I think, to recognize how far I’ve come. I love a good whodunit. The second...

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10 Strategies for Getting Through the Holiday Season

Carrie Cantwell
November 30, 2020

Times have been tough. But so are we. The end-of-year holidays can be difficult any year, and, this time around, they pose new challenges to our mood and well-being. Let’s not forget: Living with bipolar has taught us how to navigate through uncertainty. Here are the coping skills I’ve been relying on to remain stable...

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5 Strategies for Handling Holiday Triggers

Tiffany Romito
November 26, 2020

For me, the holidays usually bring not only traditions and gatherings but also stress and strong triggers. Difficult memories arise as the season changes and the holidays are upon us. In the years since my bipolar diagnosis and sobriety, I’ve learned how to navigate these months and maintain a stable mood. Holidays & Memories—for Better...

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The Power of Gratitude for Finding Joy & Managing Bipolar

Sasha Kildare
November 25, 2020

With the current challenges of daily living, I’ve grown to appreciate my gratitude practice even more. Every small joy makes a difference, and creating my daily list helps me to be mindful, stay present, and monitor my anxiety. Gratitude Brings Me Back to the Moment Eighteen years ago, my first Overeater’s Anonymous sponsor suggested that...

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Thanksgiving & the Holiday Season—An Opportunity for Growth

Debbie Jacobs
November 20, 2020

My anxiety at the family dinner table often made me “check out” during gatherings like Thanksgiving. I got lost in my head, where I felt safer. But I also missed out on all the fun. Here is how I set an intention to stay in a healthy mindset, escape the holiday blues, and learned to...

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5 Strategies for When Bipolar Depression Returns

Tanya Hvilivitzky
November 13, 2020

To prepare for the possibility of a relapse of bipolar depression, it is important to consider a few ideas about mindset, control, and support. While bipolar is often equated with mania, it’s bipolar depression that predominates for most people and can be a destructive force in our lives. When the despair finally lifts, it can...

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Using Creative Pursuits to Cope with Bipolar Symptoms

Elizabeth Drucker
November 11, 2020

After years of finding new ways to tackle my mood episodes before they take over my day, I’ve noticed that those I turn to most are the strategies that allow me to be creative. Art, music, dance, and more … the creative arts help with distraction, self-soothing, and even relief from the anxiety and depression...

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How Managing My Bipolar & Mania Taught Me to Manage Myself

Debbie Jacobs
November 5, 2020

My first manic episode and diagnosis of bipolar hit me hard. They pushed me to become the person I am today—someone who proactively manages symptoms and not only truly knows herself but also trusts herself in the midst of any storm. My 1st Manic Episode My first experience of going to therapy was in 1998,...

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6 Ways to Get Through the Next 6 Months

Julie A. Fast
November 4, 2020

Living with bipolar isn’t easy—it requires strength. We can get through periods of societal instability and still remain stable with our bipolar. Here are the strategies I’m using to get through this stressful, triggering season. Bipolar & the Need for Support and Coping Skills in Times of Stress Bipolar disorder isn’t an easy illness. We...

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Reclaiming Your Power in the “Business” of Managing Bipolar

Brooke Baron
October 29, 2020

If you, too, are wondering how to find true acceptance of bipolar, I feel you. None of this is easy. In my opinion, “accepting bipolar” means accepting a new (but empowering!) full-time job: Chief Mood Officer. Where’s My Golden Parachute? I’m a big word nerd, and I’m constantly absorbing and (over-?) analyzing the language I...

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Do People with Bipolar Disorder Recover?

Julie A. Fast
October 28, 2020

I’m an expert in bipolar management, yet I still have frequent mood swings and deal with symptoms regularly. Shouldn’t I have “solved” this by now? Shouldn’t I have “recovered”? Bipolar Disorder, Expertise, & Mood Management I’ve been writing books about bipolar disorder management since 1998, and my webpage started in 2002. How is it possible...

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How I Shake the Feeling of Failure

Brooke Baron
October 22, 2020

Bipolar depression can make me feel like I am a failure. After sitting with this feeling so regularly, I began to recognize small steps that help the heaviness and negativity fall away and clear the lenses of my usual rose-colored glasses. Bipolar Disorder & Feeling Like a Failure I can sometimes feel like a complete...

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My Tips for Managing Moodiness

Debbie Jacobs
October 21, 2020

When I was first diagnosed with bipolar disorder, I thought it meant I was doomed to live with moodiness and irritability for life. Fortunately, I found that balancing my mood is not only possible but essential for achieving peace of mind. What Motivates Our Moodiness? Over time, I’ve learned that my moodiness has more to...

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6 Creative Ways to Combat Seasonal Triggers in 2020

Anja Burcak
October 20, 2020

In a year that has tested all of our tried-and-true coping strategies for our bipolar symptoms, the arrival of a new season presents a new challenge: How can we navigate mood episodes while staying physically distant? Here are my ideas. Season Changes & Mood Disturbances As the seasons change, have you noticed a change in...

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Mitigating My Seasonal Depression in a Turbulent Year

JB Burrage
October 14, 2020

I’ve always faced deep depression in the fall months, but now I’m wondering, how will this unprecedented year affect the darker of my bipolar mood episodes? It’s about that time of the year again. When the leaves change colors, creating beautiful landscapes. When the heat of the summer is replaced by cool, crisp evenings. When...

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Why Can People with Bipolar Disorder Be So “Mean and Nasty”?

Julie A. Fast
September 23, 2020

Some bipolar mood episodes can make us behave in ways that are “mean and nasty.” They aren’t fun—for anybody—but the good news is we can learn to recognize and prevent them before our relationships suffer. Many people believe that bipolar disorder comes with only sad depression or euphoric mania. In reality, this is just 50%...

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The Big Payoff: Easing My Depression by Improvising My Exercise in Troubling Times

Sasha Kildare
September 17, 2020

Negative self-talk and self-doubt set in when I start to miss my workouts. With all that has changed and how my routine has been interrupted, it has been imperative to find exercise alternatives to keep my mania and depression at bay. Many months into our global health crisis, I’m surprised to find myself not constantly...

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