Friday, November 24, 2006

It's hypomania - face it!

They say that depression sneaks up on you. Well hypomania does too. You kinda think that everyone's cruising along normally, when in actual fact you're zipping along in mania land.

That's me right now. Have been for the past 2 weeks. The signs were there all along:

  • Insomnia night in and night out
  • Zillions of new ideas. And no way of switching them off (which largely explains the insomnia)
  • A sense of urgency about everything and MAJOR stress that there aren't enough hours in the day
  • Difficulty focusing on one thing at a time; flitting all over the place
  • Getting impatient and snappy with Miss L & Mrs M. (and I blamed it on the lack of sleep)
  • Total Neb addiction - can't be away from the cmptr for more than 30 minutes at a time
  • Plenty of energy. Beach walks every day. Record-breaking hours of work
  • Difficulty meditating
So how am I gonna deal with it? I'm much more experienced with dealing with depression, the place I spend 98% of my life. The problem with the hypo is that there are good parts and bad parts. The energy and work hours are pure mana. I don't want to can't afford to throw them out with the bathwater.

Some ideas:
  • Go watch a movie this weekend - at a movie house. (DVDs just don't do the trick) This will force me to switch off for a while. And get me away from the cmptr.
  • Don't lose sight of the Big Picture, all these things on the TO DO list have only just got there - they are NOT that urgent
  • Work even more at the meditation. Maybe increase the sessions.
  • Eat a giant meal 2nite, late in the evening just before I sleep. Hopefully that will help me sleep (it has always been my sure-fire insomnia cure in the past)
  • Be aware throughout the day that I'm skirting mania at the mo. Force myself to focus on one thing at a time and not get distracted.
  • Cut down the coffee and tea intake
  • Slow down
  • Slow down
  • Slow down
Any more ideas?


  1. Ideas on controlling mania:

    Try to organize something (for me it might be my recipes or organize my book shelf)

    Make use of your energy and do a cleanup job that you would not normally have the energy to do.

    Apply yourself to only one or two of the things on your list. You can accomplish lots of wonderful things at times like this. Best to keep your focus narrow - if you can.

    Think of yourself as being in the midst of the snowball effect. The more you do, the more you want to do, and the faster you do it. The hypomania will feed on itself and you could become manic. When I'm like this I try to limit my activities.

    Trouble is - it's almost impossible to stop the snowball once it gets rolling downhill.

    Hope you come in for a soft landing.

  2. Get all the sleep you can get, no matter what it takes. Lack of sleep fuels the mania further, a viscious loop.

    Due to circumstances beyond my control, I am off of my meds, and as could be predicted I am heading into mania.

    I am working to both control the mania and to harness, as you seem to be.

    I appreciate your spin on this, and look forward eagerly to any resposnes this post inspires.


  3. The three most important things for preventing mania are Sleep, Sleep, and Sleep. The drug of choice, for me, at moments of hypomania is 100mg Chlorpromazine. (was the first antipsychotic drug, used during the 1950s and 1960s. Used as chlorpromazine hydrochloride and sold under the trade names Largactil® and Thorazine®) An hour later I want my bed and I will sleep for 12 or more hours. Within 2 days the breaks have been put on without freefalling into a deep depression.

  4. At the moment, I am right there with you. Goodness, its 3 a.m. here and I just posted my b*tch ing about the very same subject.

    First of all, I did not pinpoint or know that it was hypomania. I'm p*ssd that something is occuring but I'm not worried it will go any higher and thats because of meds. I understand about people not being able to get/afford their meds, but I don't get the ones that are afraid of meds, or have serious reservations about it. I could not live, nor have the quality of life that I do without them. There is no doubt in my mind because I have paid the price to get them sparkling correct for me. I'm certainly no spokesman for pharm.'s because I hate that they are making billions by lying about price and their mindset.

    So glad to know you, BP Guy. In a world where you can't always know who is who, you are obviously the real deal and I so appreciate you sharing your bipolar with the world. These are one of those times that I really lean on you, and I appreciate it.

  5. get rid of distractions and things that make you loop. dunno how OC you get,i can spend 4 or 5 hours getting " around" to doing stuff, order of approach etc...
    best to clear a table, space,whatever, DO CREATIVE STUFF...then go for a run or something very cardio. biking long distances good. make art...
    probably don't blog much, or surf much: that can drive you too crazy, too many ideas without endings...dunno how helpful this is. helps for me.

  6. I'll echo what others have said: sleep.

    I'm pretty much the opposite of you - I'm hyper more often than depressed. Sometimes you've just got to wait for it to pass, but more often than not you've got to be strict and get a fixed routine to your sleep. Then everything else should fall into place.

    Being hyper means that there'll always be some reason to break the routine. But you can always do these things the next day - and you'll probably do them better after a good night's sleep.

    If you're on meds it's easier, if they have a sedative effect, because you can vary the time you take them. But I'm always wary of sleeping pills because of the psychological effect they can have, especially when withdrawing from them.

    So, get into a sleep routine and you'll gradually pull out of it. And be careful of caffeine. Drinking chocolate (no, I'm not a pensioner) is a good replacement.

    It also helps to accept that you're always going to be a bit hyper now and again. You've got good analytical skills, which suggests that you're a learner. This stands you in good stead because, with a bit of experience, you're more than able to develop effective coping strategies.

    Good luck.

  7. first pop in some klonopin.
    then try to organize your CD's - alphabetically.

    write a letter to Mrs. M and Miss L, when we're hypomanic the loving us-self really shows up

    just think of organizing stuff, maybe writing something, even if it's on the blog

    we're just hoping this wont turn into full blown mania.:)

  8. perhaps gay, but long bubble baths or long showers are quite a good substitute for sleep.

    abandon the idea of control, just flow like the leaf on the river.

    if you're still on antidepressants, taper off them asap. wellbutrin for example is pretty much speed when it comes to mania prone folk. i myself have never in my life been on an antidepressant, i am so hell bent towards mania:z!

    ps: for me, i've advanced so much with my manias that the last one (7th) i had i was sleeping like a baby throughout without any special sleeping meds , excercising 5 times a week 1 hour in the morning, 1 hour before bed, having sex (mostly with my left hand & internet pr0n) every time i thought of anything resembling a hole (pipes included) and still with all the right sleeping and extreme energy burning happening, i did not bring myself down, nor did 3 involuntary quick hospitalizations bring me down...

    i came down only when IT was done with me and i think it roughly took 4 months for me to really quiet down this time around and if only i wouldn't fucking have to work for a living & judge myself for the ability to function in this goddam society, i swear to all gawds and daemons, manias are the way to salvation.

    of course, for believing that, i am an outcast not just among the psychiatric establishment, but also among the 'bipolar united we stand' crowd!

    ah well, the Way is lonely and you must walk IT all Alone!

  9. Dang, z0tl beat me to it once again, no pun intended. I've always found that getting laid handles both birds at once, the hypomania AND the insomnia. But your love-life is NOMDB, really.


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