I have learned a lot in my last ten years since my diagnosis of Bipolar One disorder. Even with my wealth of experience, I still fail at remembering to stay aware of my mental health.
It is important over the next year to find the balance between my needs and feelings. On my best days, I find the balance between my responsibilities and the things I enjoy in this life. At my worst, I am dealing with constant anxiety, stress, and depression.
The days that are meaningful in my life are when I let my stress consume my every second. I get lost in it. It becomes all that I am, and there seems no end to the consuming feeling. From one day to the next the stress becomes more a part of my life until it is my life. I always feel as if it will go away at any moment. It never does.
I have regular responsibilities in my life, but too often I am all about the duties that I have to complete on a weekly basis. I fail to see that I am consumed by deadlines of school work. Even worse is the lofty goals that I set for myself when it comes to my writing projects. When it came to writing my screenplay Memory of Shane the project consumed me. When I wasn’t working on my school work, I was writing my screenplay. The stress was massive, but I always found a way to put it aside for another day.
The stress became a constant companion and health declined to start the year. I had forgotten the golden rule. Your best mental health is a balance between work and play. I drank way too much coffee. I slept very little. The end result was a fantastic original screenplay that was all my own.
But at what cost? My mental health.
My blog The Bipolar Writer is the best thing to come out of my 2017. Yet, I still feel as if every day I have to come up with new and essential topics. If I am inactive, my mind goes into overdrive, and the worst crosses my mind. I fear that my blog will become irrelevant as I explore every part of who is The Bipolar Writer. I am all about focusing on my goals and nothing else.
My mental health suffers which leads to the last year full physical health issues. I forget to leave my house for days or even weeks at a time. When my health is good, and life is grand, I remember to take some time for myself. I go for walks. I listen to great music that raises my mood. I remember to meditate daily and to work on my mindfulness breathing. Lately, I have forgotten to do all the things that I love in life outside of my writing.
I realize that I need to remember to practice self-discipline. The little accomplishments in my life are as significant. But I tend to only focus on the primary life goals that I want to achieve. Waking up today and getting out of bed is a victory. So is eating three meals a day. Two days ago I hardly left my bed.
When my depression is severe, I often fail to eat on a regular schedule. The consuming feeling of stress and anxiety led me to take three days of ineffective laying in bed. That isn’t a bad thing. I always fail to recognize the importance of giving myself a break.
In 2018, I want to learn that when I reach my daily limit, I can pick up a book or go to the beach.
The truth is self-discipline has always been a weakness in my life. I have never been good at having a reliable schedule. Self-discipline is so crucial in mental health awareness. Self-discipline means overcoming the feelings of helplessness that often accompanies my depression. It could mean waking up with small goals for each day. If I stay away from wanting to write my entire memoir in one day, my stress levels will go down. It’s the little things in life.
When it comes to my writing projects, I always feel as if I have to prove myself every second of the day. I convince myself every day that I spend writing. When I write here on my blog, work on a school project, or working on a chapter of my memoir its small achieving goals. Writing is the thing that I love most of all in this world, but there is so much more in this world.
It is the time that I discover new things in 2018. I always wanted to take a poetry class or even join book club.
I never do anything spontaneous or because it popped into my mind. There are so many things left in this world that I want to learn outside of my usual everyday life as a writer. I always wanted to learn Korean, it’s a beautiful language. I always talk about learning a new language but its talk.
So today I signed up for an online subscription to Rosetta Stone. I am going to learn to speak Korean in 2018. I have so many travel plans this coming year, but I can’t forget to be spontaneous too. I can go to my favorite coffee shop and read a good book. Forget about writing for a day or two. I can finally break out of my shell and try a different coffee shop, they’re on every corner.
My point in writing this blog post is to encourage. I want every one of my fellow mental health bloggers to look at their own mental health awareness. We are inching closer to 2018 and what I have learned writing this blog is we can all work on something.
So I challenge every one of my fellow bloggers to work hard in your life. But also don’t let having a mental illness stop you from living. Find your mental health awareness, your balance in life. Its great to have goals. It’s even better to find balance with your self-discipline.
It has been great to write about working on my mental health awareness in my own life.
Always Keep Fighting.
Please Help me Publish my Memoir
I am almost done editing my memoir “The Bipolar Writer,” and I have decided to go down the self-publishing route. If you can donate anything towards my goal, it would mean the world to me. I am still working towards enough to pay an artist for a good cover. Those that donate will get a special mention in my memoir on a page dedicated to those that made my memoir possible. Thank you in advance!