For bipolar youth, self-care strategies are important. Self-care sounds pretty self-explanatory, right? We all know that we are supposed to take care of ourselves, but so often we neglect to do it (Practicing Self-Care Is Hard But Vital For Mental Health). Think of yourself as a car. You need your car for a lot of different reasons. If you don’t take the time to care for it, get the oil changed, rotate the tires, wash it, or get a tune up, it doesn’t run properly. Your mind and body work the same way. When you don’t take the time to give yourself the things that you need to keep yourself healthy, things don’t run as smoothly. Learn these self-care strategies for bipolar youth to keep yourself running smoothly.
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Recently I’ve gone through a really nasty bipolar mixed episode and one night I was reminded that distraction is a major bipolar coping skill that I use. I do it without even thinking about it much of the time. My brain just purposefully shifts from agonizing emotional thoughts to unemotional ones. Activities at that time are similar. Distraction as a bipolar coping skill is incredibly useful. Keep reading »

It is generally believed that drinking makes schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder worse (Drinking Too Much Alcohol? How Much Alcohol is Too Much?). But until very recently, I drank even though I have schizoaffective disorder and am on medication for it. Okay, I was a very light drinker, but I still drank. Then I just stopped. This is why. Keep reading »

If you find yourself anxious in many different situations, especially those that relate to your performance, behavior, or relationships with others, you might consider the possibility that you have unrealistically high standards for yourself. It’s not uncommon for people to hold themselves to high standards, and doing so can be motivating. Impossibly high standards, though, can make people anxious and interfere in their lives (How Not to Expect Too Much from Yourself). If your own high standards are making you anxious, there’s a way to reclaim your life. Keep reading »

There are many mental health issues that come up thanks to Donald Trump. The past week has been cruel to me. I’ve been called everything from a snowflake to a crybaby to (my favorite) Satanic because I don’t support Donald Trump – or Hillary Clinton, for that matter  (Don’t Stigmatize Emotional Reactions to the US Election). I’ve been told to get out of America even though I’m a veteran, part Native American, and the descendant of a Revolutionary War veteran. Both the winners and losers in this election have displayed the worst in terms of their conduct. But my concerns about Trump boil down to a five-year-old girl: my niece, Addie. This is what I want my niece to know about mental health issues and Donald Trump. Keep reading »

I dissociate when the pain of bipolar disorder becomes too severe. It happened to be just last night, in fact. I was wailing out into the night about the pain and suffering and willing it all to end (Losing a Battle with My Bipolar Brain), knowing that it wouldn’t, so I just dissociated. I separated from the world. My brain and mind walked away from each other. The pain of bipolar disorder forced me to dissociate for my own good. Keep reading »

Watching social media on the US election night last week left me with a feeling of dread and it’s important not to stigmatize that type of emotional reaction to the US election. The heaviness of people’s words and the fears they expressed post after post was palpable through the screen. I hadn’t searched for the negative; I simply clicked on the trending hashtags #USElection2016 and #ElectionNight. The posts the next morning after Donald Trump’s victory was much the same. But US election emotions shouldn’t be stigmatized. Keep reading »

As a Millennial and mental health advocate, it is important to learn about technological advancements such as phone applications (apps) and their effect on mental health. There are new developments in science and technology aiding those struggling with a mental health condition (Time for Tech in Depression Treatment). Phone applications and newer technologies are proof that more attention is being paid to mental health and the need for mental health funding and awareness. Check out these apps for your phone that can aid in good mental health. Keep reading »

The idea of a plan to get out of bed despite anxiety might, at first, seem like the stuff of fairy tales. Like depression, anxiety can make it difficult to get out of bed (Waking Up with Anxiety. Why Can’t I Just Get Out of Bed?). Any type of anxiety disorder can be life-limiting, causing people to want to, need to, remain in bed unable to deal with both themselves and the world around them. Despite how it may sometimes feel, you don’t have to remain a prisoner to anxiety. Try this specific plan to get out of bed and get going despite anxiety. Keep reading »

Yesterday was Election Day, and though it was the end of the election cycle, for many it was the beginning of post-election depression — but the good news is that extreme self-care can help you cope with post-election depression. Social media and news media outlets have been teeming with election-related articles, memes, videos, pictures, and posts with overwhelmingly negative messages. There remains potential for a severe backlash regarding election results and further negative coverage, so I’ve made a list of thoughts and practices that should help you cope with post-election depression, including extreme self-care (Implement Extreme Self-Care for Depression). Keep reading »