One Word: HOPE!

My friend Julie Fast, who has a blog called, she is a bipolar d/o coach and advocate and she offers treatment plans for BPD, and she has written many books on the subject as well! She is quite amazing! She asked me what is one word I would say to a person who was newly diagnosed with bipolar disorder and my answer is in the mini video 🙂

You rarely hear the words bipolar disorder and hope spoken together. Lets hope (!) that treatment, education and other services needed to live well with this awful illness make the use of bipolar disorder and hope in a single thought a common occurrence!

Have Hope

I am reposting this due to some technical difficulties with the original post.

This, my first video blog post, is for people who have been newly diagnosed  with bipolar disorder. Just know that there is hope. And if I can do it so can you. And yes, meditation, yoga, relaxation, all that is great for you but it can not take the place of medication, specifically a mood stabilizer.i mean if you had kidney disease, would you think yoga, meditation, and relaxation would make you all better? No, you would not, you would take medication for it. Well bipolar disorder is a disease and you need to take medication for that as well. So remember, mood stabilizers and Hope are what you need.

Feelings are just visitors


This post is inspired by the graphic above that I saw on my Facebook newsfeed from a site called Recovery 4 All:

This seems to be quite genius advice. Feelings come and feelings go. How simple! But… yes there is a but, can people with mood disorders do this? I know I can hang on to feelings for days. It wouldn’t be so bad if the feelings were good ones, but they usually are not. The feelings that hang on to me or to which I hang on are usually negative ones, like anger, fear, anxiety, unease, just bad feelings. I wish I could say to them “You have overstayed your welcome. Please go now.” And sometimes I can. But the majority of times they ARE me, so I cannot ask them to leave. Finally, when I realize that they really are NOT me, then I can ask them to leave. Then they lose their power over me and I gain myself and my life back. I wonder, if I had this made into a bracelet or something very visible to me, if I could stop being the captive of these negative feelings?

I recently learned how negatively stress affects you depends wholly on how you view stress. Link:  This is a quote from the TED lecture: “When you choose to view your stress response as helpful you create the biology of courage. stress gives us access to our hearts, the compassionate heart that finds joy and meaning in connecting with others and yes your pounding physical heart working so hard to give you strength and energy. And when you choose to view stress this way, you’re not just getting better at stress, you’re actually making a pretty profound statement, you’re saying that you can trust yourself to handle life’s challenges and you’re remembering that you don’t have to face them alone.” This is incredible! Your outlook on stress can affect whether you die of a heart attack or thrive and live healthily on. If this can be done with stress, why can we not think our way out of feelings? If we can, then we can have more control over our lives, and we can live the lives we want to live, without anger, fear, anxiety, worry, and unease. I mean, stress is no small thing, and if we can mitigate its effects upon us, then it is possible that we can control our emotions and mitigate their effects upon us. Gives me hope! Hope and resilience, my two best life fellows.



Some words that have the power to change your thinking, the power to pull you up by your bootstraps, the power to pull you out of the seemingly bottomless hole that is depression and anxiety:

RESILIENCE, that is what we have, what we are to recover over and over again from black depressions, from the mean reds. We get up over and over again and brush ourselves off and go on! How resilient is our spirit, how resilient are we! I marvel at this ability.

PLASTICITY, this is what our brains do in learning or after any experience. An experience leaves a mark on our brains, good or bad. But this is not permanent. Our brains have the ability to form new connections and lose old ones. This happens between neurons. Once it was thought that an adult brain is like a structure made of stone. There is nothing further from the truth, the brain is undergoing changes all the time, whether it be in repair, or neuronal cell growth or growth of axons and dendrites. This all makes our brain very adaptable and repairable and changeable! So if we have undergone bad experiences, our brain can recover from those through plasticity!

HOPE, well what can I say about this word? This is the little, four letter word my world rests on. It is so powerful that even in the darkest of circumstances, just say it and things will get brighter. Your heart will get lighter. You will breathe easier. Take it away and , oh no I can’t even fathom taking it away. Always have hope, as long as you live and breathe!

STRENGTH, we with mental illnesses all have to be strong. We go through hell so many times that the word hell sort of loses its meaning. My muscles are getting stronger because I have a FaceTime personal trainer and that is just fab. But my mind has to be strong, my heart has to be strong, my will has to strong to withstand this sick disease. We all do. And we all are, that is why we are still here. We are strong for our children, for our friends and loved ones and we are strong for ourselves!

OVERCOME, when I am in a very depressed state or manicky phase, I do have lucid moments when I tell myself that I will overcome this too, just like I have been doing since 1985, yes I will overcome.

and a sentence: THIS TOO SHALL PASS, everything passes, good, bad, indifferent things pass. So of course whatever phase you’re in, it will pass.

Take heart my friends and stand tall and strong, easier times are ahead. I am sure of it!