Tips for Living Well with Bipolar Disorder
If you have bipolar disorder, you might feel as though you are all over the place with regard to your life and how you are living it. This can be frustrating and make it hard to reach your goals. Here are some tips for living well with bipolar disorder.
1. Set a Sleep Schedule and Stick to It
Your first step is to plan a sleep schedule and follow it. Sometimes exhaustion is an emotional trigger for people who are suffering from bipolar disorder, and it is easier to avoid exhaustion if you know that you are going to be getting the same 6 to 8 hours of sleep each night. Create accountability for yourself by setting an alarm on your phone that corresponds to when you should be doing certain activities, such as getting ready for bed or reading in bed. If you frequently use social media, tell your friends to tell you to go to sleep if they see you online past a certain time each night. This will help you stick to your sleep schedule and maximize your chances for success.
2. Schedule Therapist Appointments When Going through a Breakup
A huge fight or a breakup can be a common emotional trigger for people who suffer from bipolar disorder. You don't want to let yourself get off track just because the person that you were dating was a jerk. One way to help yourself stay on track is to schedule appointments with a therapist or additional appointments with your current therapist when going through a breakup. If your therapist knows what you're going through and how you're likely to react, he or she can recommend personal coping strategies that will help increase the odds that you're going to get through this tough time without any wild changes in mood.
3. Build a Social Life into Your Weekly Schedule
Join a book club, set aside time to have lunch with friends each week, or take up a new hobby and go to meetups in order to build your social life into your schedule. This will allow you to avoid isolating yourself when you are going through a depressive episode and will make it much easier for you to recover from that depressive episode. Building a social life into your schedule will also give you accountability and allow you to alert your friends that something's wrong just by the fact that you didn't show up to a regular meeting.
For more tips, talk to a therapist specializing in bipolar disorders. You can find one through an establishment like Comprehensive Behavioral Health Associates Inc.