Most of the time, people love to judge stay-at-home moms. Whether it’s because of their personality or their lifestyle, there is a comment about them. What’s more is that some people ask about their “way of life” due to curiosity, these questions to them are highly insulting.
People say that having bipolar disorder is no different from being on a roller coaster. The twists, loops, and sharp turns can be exciting sometimes, primarily when the mania allows you to complete more tasks than usual. If the depressive episodes strike, though, it feels as if the ride dropped from the highest structure and is now free-falling until who knows when.
The thing is, since there is no cure for bipolar disorder, you may never be able to detach yourself from this roller coaster. The fun tends to vanish when you experience ups and downs over and over. You might even come to a point at which you start to feel helpless because you have no idea who can help you get out of this crazy ride.
“Bipolar disorder is probably the main psychiatric disorder where medication is absolutely essential.” John Preston, PsyD stated. Nonetheless, how you’ll live your life does not need to get dictated by an illness. You can still enjoy the following activities despite having bipolar disorder.
Because mood switching is typical when you have this condition, you may not notice the change much when you are always moving. That can only take place if you commit to fitness routines and think of strengthening your muscles. According to Amanda Zayde, PsyD, “Exercise is key; speak to your primary care physician to see what kind of physical activity is right for you.”
When the depression is in full mode, you should realize that it isn’t necessary to force yourself to move and be happy. You can remain at home and talk to nobody. However, your disposition may improve once you start meditating.
The practice, after all, encourages you to focus on your body and mind and forget everything else. Your concentration goes to your breathing pattern, as well as the sensation of getting rid of your problems one by one mentally. The more you meditate, the easier it may become to fight your depressive episodes. “Meditation is not just relaxing, but to be keenly aware of the present moment while not interfering with mental activities that revolve around our little self.” Andrea F. Polard, PsyD noted.
- Getting Creative
How many celebrities living with the disorder got to nurture their craft and stay famous because of their creativity? There’s Mariah Carey, Demi Lovato, Mel Gibson, and Russell Brand, to name a few. That should help you understand that your life is not over after a diagnosis. You are welcome to tap into your artistic side and express your experiences through music or arts.
In case you feel too lazy to go to the gym, you can still clean your house from top to bottom as a part of your fitness routine. Start removing the cobwebs on your ceiling and dusting off your display rack, for instance. Then you may scrub the walls, the windows, and the floor. Once you get contented with the outcome, you can drop dirty clothes into the machine, or wash the dishes manually. This way, your excess energy is put to great use.
It is also significant for you to improve your social skills. That often lacks in people with bipolar disorder since you assume that not many individuals want to be friends with someone who has both mania and depression. The truth, however, is that your family and a small group of folks are the only people you need right now. As long as you speak and meet with them often, you don’t have to worry about not fitting in.
Last but not the least, your life won’t seem so miserable if you manage to sleep for seven to eight hours. Regardless of how hectic your schedule is, it matters to allot enough time at night for resting. For sure, you can take naps throughout the day when you feel tired, but your body can only re-energize itself when you have an uninterrupted sleep.
When you are diagnosed with bipolar disorder, you know that you’ll carry it forever. Instead of feeling gloomy about it, though, you should try the activities above so that you’ll see that life does not and should not stop due to an illness.
Let me start this post by sharing a quote from the famous Scottish novelist and playwright, J.M. Barrie: “The life of every man is a diary in which he means to write one story and writes another, and his humblest hour is when he compares the volume as it is with what he vowed to make it.”
A lot of people enjoy keeping a journal for various reasons. Personally, I am a big fan of journaling. I find happiness in jotting down thoughts on a random basis. In fact, I always carry my journal or any notebook with me wherever I go. It can be comforting to have a paper to write on every time something exciting happens in my life.
There are hundreds of reasons why it is significant to own a journal. Let me share some advantages of having one:
It makes you feel more aware of your emotions.
“Journaling is great for enhancing self-awareness through helping us detect and track patterns of behavior, thoughts, and feelings.” Alison Stone, LCSW, said. The entries in the journal are usually free-flowing. As such, it gives you an opportunity to write anything that comes to your mind. It can be anything under the sun. Just keep on writing about the different emotions in your daily life until you see a pattern. The journal can help you know what usually makes you sad, what excites you or gives you joy.
It helps you process things.
One of the most crucial things that people do every single day is making decisions. Everyone has lots of options to choose from. This can be very confusing, especially if you want to take all the choices presented before you. When this happens, the best thing to do is to use a journal to help you in making a decision. Writing about your thoughts, on a regular basis, can guide you to make better choices in the future. The entries in the journal can be used as a reference.
It allows you to keep track of special moments.
A journal can also be used as a repository of all the beautiful events or special moments that take place in your life. “Some have found it valuable to keep journals and then go back and read them to see how far they have progressed.” says Kathy Hardie-Williams, NCC, LPC, LMFT. Feel free to doodle on its pages together with the essential details you want to remember. The illustrations will help you remember what exactly happened while you were writing in the journal. Keep in mind that the best time to journal is when you are happy.
It takes your stress away.
There are days when you may find yourself in a complete struggle of finding your happiness. A good example of this is when you get your heart broken. Nothing will ever ease the pain that you would feel during this time. However, writing about it in the journal can help you understand the situation more. It will help you see the bigger picture of the suffering or misfortune. The process of writing can be therapeutic too. “Happy people make healthier choices,” explains Scott Glassman, PsyD.
I started writing on my journals when I was still in high school. Until now, I still use journaling to help me process my emotions as well as to remind me of how fast feelings can change. There are times when I would read my old journal entries to remind myself of how far I’ve gotten.
Are you a book lover? Do you want to read more books this year? Is it difficult on your part to find the right novel to enjoy? If you answered yes to all these questions, then this article is perfect for you. I have compiled a list of the top books that you will surely love flipping through the pages this 2018:
by R.J. Palacio
This is the right book to read if you are the type of person who loves heart-warming stories. The main character is August Pullman who is a ten years old boy suffering from facial abnormalities. Because of this condition, he encounters difficulty in dealing with other people. He finds it challenging to make friends at school. It can be heartbreaking to realize how hard is life is and how he keeps up with it.
Discover how August survives his day-to-day life situations. You will be surprised at how amazing he is. It is a narrative, so you get to discover the internal dialogues and interactions that the main character has with the other people in his life.
- The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck
by Mark Manson
This book aims to inspire all readers to have a positive outlook on life. The self-help guide was written by a famous blogger in the United States. He presents the daily struggles that most people encounter in different situations and how to get over them. He will not tell you that the secret to a happy life is to keep thinking positive. Instead, he wants you to learn that sometimes, life can fuck you over, and it’s okay. The key is to live with it and keep on improving.
- Astrophysics for People in A Hurry
by Neil de Grasse Tyson
Everyone is always in a rush. It seems that the twenty-four hours we get every single day is entirely insufficient. Fortunately, there are many things that we can to do make the most of our time. Neil de Grasse Tyson has some tips and tricks for you in one of his famous books. It is surprising to discover that there are lots of ideas to be good at time management. This book is definitely worth your time!
- The Handmaid’s Tale
by Margaret Atwood
This is quite a dark novel that deals with the possibility of having a community that is controlled by tyrants. The main story revolves around the lives of women who are strictly pressured to follow whatever is instructed to them. These women are divided into different classes, namely the chaste, childless wives, housekeeping Marthas and reproductive handmaids. The book can be quite disturbing, but it is so beautifully written that it will spike your interest to finish it ‘til the end.
by Dan Brown
This book was published in the last quarter of 2017. It became a best seller instantly because a well-renowned author, Dan Brown, wrote it. Just like all his novels, this one also tries to stir controversy. One of the questions answered by this book is “Where do we come from?” Pay attention to details because the author took his time in researching for the book.
Make 2018 more fruitful by reading at least one, if not all, a book from the list above.
Writers don’t have all the ideas in their heads. They look for some source of inspiration in all the unexpected, sometimes weird, provocative, and awe-inspiring places.
Are you feeling down lately? Do you want to get over that feeling? There are a lot of things that you can do to cheer yourself up. One of which is resorting to the availability of songs coming from great artists all over the world. A recent study shows that listening to music can help a person improve his mood or brighten his day.
“Therapy doesn’t have to be talk-based; there are some modalities, like music therapy and art therapy, that can help you get those in tune with those emotions without having to cough them up verbally.” Hannah Goodman, LMHC said. With that, I have decided to compile a list of lovely songs to listen to during your gloomy days:
- Happy by Pharrell Williams
The beat of this song will inspire you to keep moving or dancing. This song reminds its listeners that one’s life can change when he knows how to find happiness on his own. You do not need to rely on someone or other people before you can get the pure bliss you deserve.
- Here Comes The Sun by The Beatles
This masterpiece is one of the classic songs from the world-renowned group called The Beatles. If you are having a rough day at the office, then make sure to look for this song on your phone and play it. You will surely smile with its sweet lyrics and lovely tune.
- Shake It Off by Taylor Swift
Sometimes, all it takes to become happy is to let go of all our inhibitions and reservations. This is the message of Taylor’s Swift song entitled “Shake It Off.” It reminds you of the significance of accepting one’s shortcomings. Always keep in mind that you do not need to get approval from the people around us. “Focus on yourself and your own happiness and do not compare yourself to others.” Marc Romano, PsyD said.
- Imagine by John Lennon
The song is precisely what you need if you want to believe that more good things are going to happen in your life. You will realize that the song is full of hope. It inspires you to keep going. This masterpiece was beautifully written by John Lennon himself. Since its first release, it has become a world favorite.
- All You Need is Love
This is another beautiful piece by The Beatles. The song tells us the importance of having love in our hearts. Based on the song, all you need is love. Somehow, it sends a reminder to all of us that life can be more beautiful, regardless of the circumstances present, as long as there is love.
- Ain’t No Mountain High by Marvin Gaye
When you are feeling alone and sad, listen to Marvin Gaye’s “Ain’t No Mountain High.” It will make you think of all the great people you have in your life. This song will make you want to get in touch with your friends and family who are miles away from you. Remember, “People with a healthy self-esteem tend to view failure as an event. People with low self-esteem often view failure as fatal. This thought process pummels one’s self-esteem and overtime being a failure becomes their identity.” counselor Monte Drenner said.
The songs listed above are just six of the thousands of beautiful songs written by great artists around the world. Try to explore the different songs and find your favorites. Put your top songs in a folder or on a list so that you can listen to it anytime you want. Music can set your spirit free. Let the music heal your sorrow, grief or sadness. The best thing about listening to songs is that you can do it anytime you want.
One of the books that I love is The Secret, which was written by Rhonda Byrne. I was in high school when I received a copy from my mother. It was a gift for my 18th birthday celebration. At first, I was hesitant in reading the material because it was a non-fiction book. Surprisingly, it changed my life into something better and brighter. Reading good books is indeed helpful and therapeutic, according to www.raleighparentandchild.com/. There are so many lessons that I got from the book, and I would like to share these with you:
If you are trying to find activities to keep you occupied during your leisure time, then it is best to consider gardening. Gardening has many benefits: promotes relaxation, fitness and producing delicious and wholesome food. According to studies, planting and cultivation can strengthen muscles, joints, and bones, prevents falls and improve balance, decrease the incidence of lifestyle diseases and overall promotes long and healthy lives.
“In our busy, hectic world, we are rarely fully present, but gardening gives us the opportunity to connect with nature and experience mindfulness.” Marion Rodrigue, LMHC, NCC, said. Gardening is also considered to be total body work out since it will involve moving around, digging, planting, weeding and watering. Also, you will appreciate your energy expenditure through harvest and produce. Another benefit of gardening is achieving the more relaxed state of mind. It might be credited to the exposure of sunlight and activated of vitamin D as well as its effects on the cortisol level in the body.
It is undeniable how advantageous it is to have a garden, and the next question is how to start one when you don’t have any horticulture and agriculture background.
Decide what type of garden to grow
Some gardens are made to produce fruits and vegetables for the consumption of the family or community while others want to have a garden to beautify their property.
Pick a sunny spot
“Exposure to nature enhances the ability to cope with and heal from stress and recover from injury or illness more quickly,” says Dr. Carlene Taylor, LMHC, LPC, CPCS, NCC. Choose a location that has direct sunlight and access to the water source. Since synthetic fertilizers will not be used in this garden, it is essential that the soil is healthy and fertile as possible. Make sure to keep in mind that an organic garden will entail extra workload than a garden that uses fertilizers and pesticides. Tilling is also an essential process to break and loosen the soil, remove clods and rocks and to pull out stray weeds and grass.
Compost is the organic garden’s best friend
Compost is essential because it will serve as a fertilizer, mulch and weed preventer. It is possible to create a compost pile to get your fertilizer, or you can easily purchase some organic fertilizers in the stores. Since the natural garden will not have the benefit of synthetic fertilizers, the compost must be integrated deeply into the soil. This is done again by tilling the ground the second time. Dig about 6 to 10 inches from the surface. Then, spread about 2 to 4 inches of compost all over the whole garden. Make several passes to work it well.
Divide into beds
Divide your garden into beds, leaving full paths in between. One method to keep stray plants and weeds out of your garden is to cover the pathway with newspapers and straw.
Weeds and Pests
The tilling and the placement of compost may have disrupted the weed seeds, bacteria, and fungus in the soil; however, to further ensure that these elements won’t be a problem in the future. It is recommended to solarize the soil. It means heating the ground enough to kill weed seeds and soil-borne disease. It is often done by using heavy black plastic over the beds. It is advisable to leave the plastic for a few weeks or if possible, for months.
“The gardening experience also allows for experimentation in life and death, promotes teamwork, and a nonjudgmental environment for students learn; thereby starting the process of connection to nature and to others.” –Theresa Hasting, LMHC