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The Guru And My Purple Monster

This is a guest post by Grace Lyons.

I met The Guru the day I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and I met the Purple Monster a little later.  Both would leave indelible marks in my life.

The Guru is one of the world’s top experts on bipolar disorder. I was fortunate to be able to see him when I no longer just had depression. My psychiatrist at the time had no other ideas of what might be wrong with me, and how to fix it. Based on my own research, I thought bipolar was likely with an atypical presentation so I went to see the one doctor who would know with certainty.

Meeting The Guru was both frightening and fascinating. I knew I was probably going to leave with a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, and I did. However, I did not expect when he asked questions, he would develop a portrait of my disease, and would be able to make predictions about what my life with bipolar would look like.

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Changing Habits General

Divide Your Emotions to Help Cope with Bipolar – Overview

One of the biggest things I’ve had to deal with while living with Bipolar is my ability to control the various emotions I go through. Some trigger episodes, whereas others put me into another state of mind. However, one thing’s for sure, it’s been hard trying to find a middle ground for my emotions. Over the years, I’ve tried hard to find ways to manage my emotions, and the link between them and my trigger points. I’ll admit it’s tough because for years, I’ve had a certain mind-frame and this forced me to approach situations in a certain way.

I started to take this stuff seriously about 6 years ago, which is pretty bad because I was diagnosed with Bipolar in early 2000. I must admit, since then, I have been able to make a leap forward because I got better at understanding my emotions and how to divide them into the right category. Before I continue, much of this does stem from psychosocial therapy, which studies emotions and understanding triggers before they happen. I am in NO way endorsing this theory because that’s NOT what I do, however, if I’m being completely transparent, then it’s important I give credit where deserved…right?

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Changing Habits Communication

All It Takes Is “1” Change (Power of Habit)

Recently, I’ve been trying to find out how powerful habits are in transforming your life. This all started when I picked up the book by Charles Duhigg called The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business. I found out about this book from my sister, who had seen it at a book store in London, England. Just like many of us, she skimmed through it, and the points illustrated resonated with her. One day, on a call with her, she described the book, which I found very interesting.

I had just joined up with Audible, and had bonus credits available, one of which I used to purchase the audio version of this book. In all honestly, if you haven’t read this book, I encourage all of you to read it because it will change your view on habits, and why we do what we do. If I was going to go through the entire book, and what I learned, it would take me several months to write out, however, I want to talk about something known as a Keystone Habit.

If you have read my other content, I’ve mentioned its importance before, however, I want to connect how a single keystone habit can be used to help us (those living with bipolar).

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Changing Habits Growth Success

How Planning My Day Gives Me A Mental High

I believe you are in control of your ultimate destiny, even though, at times, it may seem harder than before. However, just the fact that you are in control means you have the ability to manage, and create, situations that give you a mental high.

Suffering from bipolar has allowed me to really understand my train of thoughts, and I’m able to categorize them as either positive or negative. Today, I want to talk about something special that I suffered with for many years. We all have certain aspects of our lives that play a crucial role every day like relationships, work, health, self-fulfillment, etc., and it’s how we feel about them mentally that makes them either good or bad. For example, if I create a mind-frame that my relationship with my girlfriend is horrible, then that negative thought will haunt me until I can flip it upside down. I’ll admit that many times, it’s horrible and I have to work at it to make things right, but suffering from “bipolar” has caused me to view things negativity even when they are going well.

It’s this part that has caused me the MOST suffering from 1998 onwards. I was officially diagnosed with bipolar in 2000, however, way before that, I had to deal with conflicting thoughts, which affected several parts of my life.

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Communication Just My Thoughts

Relationship Troubles Today – What Can I Do?

The thing with bipolar is the smallest things can throw you off, and if you don’t have a pre-determined strategy to deal with them, you’ll be emotionally drained. I’m usually very good at dealing with emotional stress, but today, something completely caught me off guard. Relationships can be tough because there’s such an emotional connection between two people. I rely on my girl to help me out in ways that my male friends would never understand. I guess it’s because the connection with your girlfriend is completely different than others. This is EXACTLY why when something throws you off, it completely starts hitting emotional places that NO one else can come close to.

Unlike in the early stages of a relationship, when things were still pre-mature, it was a great time to test each other out…right? It’s what happens in the early stages that ultimately builds or destroys your relationship.

My early stages were amazing, and this is why I started becoming too emotionally depended on my girl, even though I knew it’s a mistake because one thing can ruin my day, week, or even month. I guess it’s my bipolar nature to be completely extreme or as they say, bi-polar: “having or relating to two poles or extremities.”

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General Just My Thoughts

Why I Named My Blog – BipolarDigest

The word “digest”, in reference to information, means:

“summary of material or information. Or,

“information or a piece of writing that has been made shorter”

If you’re like me, then you’ve visited a lot of bipolar communities for support. I’ve spent a lot of time at large funded website and forums, but lately, I have been spending more time on personal blogs. Reading personal stories allows me to tap into a more personal relationship because you get to understand what challenges an individual person faces when diagnosed with bipolar disorder. So,

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Just My Thoughts

Hope – A Four Letter Word Meaning Transformation

Here’s a definition of the word “Hope”,

a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.”

Ever since I was first diagnosed, I’ve always hoped to accomplish my goals in life. I’ve always had big plans in life because I wanted to be someone special, and someone who made a huge difference in this world. In the end, I wanted my legacy to be of someone who has helped people during their tough times.

What better way than to help those who have been diagnosed with Bipolar…right?

“Bipolar Disorder” is something I can relate to because I’ve been living with it since 2000, and have learned a lot along the way. I know making certain changes in the way you live life is very important because in all honesty, those who suffer from bipolar have a sensitive mind. However, it’s important to note your mind is beautiful, and today’s reality might NOT be tomorrow. What do I mean?

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Just My Thoughts

Learning from Steve Jobs Quote

For those of you NOT aware of Steve Jobs, he co-founded Apple, which is the creators of iPhone, iMac, iPad, and iCloud. He died at the age of 56 from pancreatic cancer.

In November 2015, I subscribed to Audible offered by Amazon. They were offering an incredible first time bonus, which is $14.95 per month, and gave you 1 credit per month. This credit can be used for any book within the Audible collection. It’s important to mention for new sign-ups, they gave you two credits for the first month. Anyway, I end up getting two books the very next day – The Power of Habits and The Steve Jobs Biography written by Walter Isaacson. I never heard of Walter Isaacson before, and the reason I purchased this book was to learn about Steve Jobs. I’m a techy, and believe he created some of the MOST revolutionary products in the market today. The complete audio book is around 25 hours long, and I would listen to it for 30-45 minutes right before going to bed.

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General Just My Thoughts

Yesterday Was Much Better…Flipping the Downward Spiral

On January 5th, 2016, I wrote a blog post about my downward spiral, and how I woke up feeling hopeless. I also mentioned a few reasons I thought I was feeling the way I did. Anyway, today is January 6th, 2016 and I’m happy to say that I’m feeling much better. I accomplished a lot, and feel great about the momentum I have about different aspects of my life. Here’s what I did today, and want to give you guys a little inspiration afterwards.

I woke up around 11AM and pushed myself to get out of bed, and started working right away. I slept around 7 hours, which is perfect because the night before, I felt as though I had overslept, which left me even more tired than before. If you have been reading on the sleep-wake cycle, then you’ll know how important a consistent pattern is for those who live with bipolar.

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General

Today…A Downward Spiral…Why?

Today, January 5th, 2016, is one of those days I woke up feeling hopeless, and thinking I’m NOT going to make it in life. These thoughts hit me a lot harder especially when I have set high goals for myself. I’ve always wanted to be successful in life so I can give back to those who have been close to me over the years. Recently, however, I have been wanting to address other bipolar sufferers so I can help them make a change. The weird thing is, I’m normally fine because I have certain tools I use whenever I feel down or depressed, but today, it’s much tougher.

What am I feeling?

I’m going to be completely transparent because this was my unconditional promise when I first started my blog. So, let me go through a few of my feelings.

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