I am in a mania state and have been for 4 weeks now. I suffer anxiety and rushing thoughts, am very effected by the noise and people around me. I am getting very irritable. My doctor has put me on beta blockers. They do help to calm me down. I find it hard to cope at work and am worried sick about when I come down I will get depressed. What coping strategies have you realized help calm and focus when hypo??…I don’t want to take mood stabilizers as last time I tried them I was very nauseous and dizzy. Help!!
Good question, however; hard to answer. Mania and hypomania are fickle little devils. They come in and take over our mind like they own it. Um no! I own my mind thank you very much!
Though I admit it is hard, we need to own our mania/hypomania. (Easier to do with hypomania, I understand that)
When done correctly we can use hypomania to our advantage. We can catch up on things we’ve been putting off. We can start new things we never had the guts to start before. And we can take comfort in the fact that we HAVEN’T yet hit the down cycle.
Will that depression come? Inevitably, yes. BUT we don’t have to let that ruin what can be something much more positive.
The key to this is, become aware of what cycle you are in. If you experiencing racing thoughts and sensitivity to sound AND you are aware of the fact that this is hypomania, you already have a one up on the situation. You completely understand what’s going on and now all you need to do is find a way to make it pass a bit easier.
When the noise and people get to be too much, find yourself an empty room. Preferably a dirty one…and just be alone with your thoughts (even if they are racing) Try to think through them and in the mean time, move around and clean that room or organize something. Be productive in some way that will make you feel better about yourself.
And if that’s not a possibility because you are working, make the bathroom your friend. Step out when needed to gather yourself. Or take a short break and a walk outside. Do something to physically exert yourself if possible until you are able to calm down a bit.
And it doesn’t hurt to make the people around you aware of your current cycle situation. That way they will know you might need some alone time.
Oh and may I suggest music? Music always calms me down. Find your favorite song and play it over and over again.
And actually, I started this site while I was going through a hypomanic phase. I didn’t realize I was on that end of the spectrum, but I was taking on responsibilities left and right. I’m thankful for that moment of hypomania. Though I did have a small crash after, I still have this site. And I wouldn’t give it up for the world.
As for fearing the inevitable crash….try your hardest NOT to think about it. You can’t stop it, but you can help it from being worse. We can’t stop our cycling. Sure with meds we can control the severity, but we’re still going to have ups and downs. Take the time to find out what helps you get through those cycles. And remember…it’s JUST you cycling. It helps me to remember that when I’m depressed, I remind myself over and over that it’s the bipolar making me that way and it WILL eventually go away. Because it’s true. It will. And the more you keep telling yourself that the faster it will disappear.
Bipolar is a mind game…literally…and you need to be on the winning side. Although it’s difficult (VERY difficult) stay as positive as possible. And if all fails…email me or any any of the authors. We’ve been there and we are MORE THAN HAPPY to help you through it!