Saturday, March 25, 2006

The Optimal Mood State

Moods must be one of the most difficult things in the world to scientifically measure. They are 100% subjective and any measurement can only be based on what the subject has to say about his or her state of mind. It's not like a knee injury where a simple X-ray will reveal the true state of matters. There ain't no Xrays for moods.

Which means that in the final analysis, you will never know how your moods compare to others. My "In-the-Pink" might be your "Pretty Shitty". Lucky you!

So if you were given a choice, what would your optimal moodstate be? The sensible answer, for us BP folk, is a pretty steady, even-keeled mood (AKA "Halfway House" in my case). But who listens to sensible answers? For me I've gotta admit that I crave the highs. Somewhere on the border between "In-the-Pink" and "YeeHaa" would be ideal. Don't get me wrong, I'm shit scared of going too high - that's when the men in white coats appear. But if I could just maintain that delicate balancing act, keeping my feet on the ground, but travellin thru the stars.

This probably doesn't make a lot of sense to some BiPolars, for whom Hypomania can be a uncomfortable, distruptive phase. I guess that's where I'm different. When I'm in the hypomanic zone my creativity rockets. I do my best concrete poetry I've ever done. My writing improves (at least I think so). If I set my mind to business I can do a normal persons week's worth of work in one day. And come up with radically innovative new ideas.

The problem is that I seldom get there. I've only had two "YeeHaa" days since starting this blog. There've been plenty more "Got-a-Gun" days.

But there'll be more YeeHaa days, of that I am sure. Just wish they'd hurry up.

Heading to the CocaCola 5fm rock concert in Cape Town today. Miss L is a big "Simple Plan" fan and likes Metallica too. To add to that some of South Africa's top talent is playing: Arno Carstens and Prime Circle being some of my favourites. South African bands have never really made it on the international music scene, but I reckon the time will come soon. We just got an Oscar for best foreign film and our very own Charlize Theron picked one up a while ago. (actually I had a dream about Charlize last night - but don't tell Mrs M).


  1. For myself and every single bi-polar I have ever spoken too, we ALL want the hypomanic stage. The GOOD one, the euphoric, energetic one. Not the crabby, tense, angry, I hate the world one. There are a few books that even describe the productivity of this stage and recommend leaving it alone. now if they could just get us there and keep us there...................LOLOL

  2. personally, i feel a little uncomfortable with myself at the hypermanic stage. sure, it beats the other extreme on a purely emotional level, but i feel less in control of my mind, and this is more worrisome. i do get most of my writing done during these times, though, so i guess i shouldn't knock it too hard.

    i'm very happy i found this blog -- there are great insights to be had here. cheers, mate!

  3. I don't want flat. I'd like a little variety. I tend to be at my most profound when I am slightly depressed. And I get a lot of work done when I am hypomanic.

    Being in one mood all the time? I just don't want to be the same flat effect regardless of where the needle is set.


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