Last month, I wrote about my drop in center, Rebel’s Drop In, which offers peer mentoring, art classes, outings, and other activities. What would it take to start one? What is peer mentoring?A peer is someone who has personal experience living with mental illness. Seventy eight comparative research studies that I read prove that...
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April 6, 2015
Playing Detective to Uncover the Culprits Behind Relapse: A Guide to Understanding Triggers and Vulnerabilities in Bipolar Disorder
April 3, 2015
This is the second article in a 3-part series. The author recommends reading the first article before reading this one.A good detective uses a variety of methods to solve cases: paying attention, asking questions, making connections. Those of us with bipolar disorder can be “relapse prevention detectives,” investigating the mystery of what...
March 20, 2015
There is a saying, that we are as “unique as snowflakes”, that “no one is the same”, by just being human. I knew there was something happening in my mind but all of a sudden, I was grouped together with a bunch of especially unique snowflakes that were sort of like me. Like a strong blizzard, you can tell there are snowflakes but you can’t see or...
March 11, 2015
I'm not sure where I learned this string of 5 words but it has been a mighty big help in my life! For example: Today I was working on my Facebook page and for promotional purposes I wanted to view the people who had "liked" my page. I tried one button after the other until I began to get that "grrrr..." feeling. That's when those 5...
March 3, 2015
The purpose of this tool is to be reminded of good things that people have said about us. When I've felt low in the past and taken a look through this file, it has helped to improve my mood. This tool consists of both a physical file folder and a digital folder in your email, or somewhere in your computer. Physical file - in a...
February 24, 2015
One of the reasons I am glad that I moved to Florida is that it led me to a peer run drop in center near my house called Rebel’s Drop In. In my small county, Broward, between Palm Beach and Miami-Dade, we have 5 of these centers. Peer run drop in centers average 5 per state, see the links below to find one near you. Mindfulness, OA, NAMI...
February 18, 2015
Are you worried? Thinking about a loved one or trouble at work? Worried about something you are in charge of or a relationship problem? Have you ever considered "rescheduling" your worry? Can you give yourself 5 minutes to worry about it today then open up your calendar and reschedule a "worry time" a day or a week from now? Example: I...
February 12, 2015
I recently joined a bipolar support group. My doctor and therapist have been encouraging me for months to join the group. They believed it would help me "normalize" some of my feelings by being around others who might have the same experiences. I put off going to the group because 1) I was either too sick (manic or depressed) to feel like...
Spotting Icebergs From Miles Away: How to Use Early Warning Signs in Bipolar Disorder Relapse Prevention
January 29, 2015
I recently watched a documentary called “Titanic’s Final Mystery.” It put forth a new theory that, due to unusual weather conditions on the night of the Titanic tragedy, there was a mirage that prevented the ship’s lookouts from seeing the infamous iceberg. It’s an interesting theory, though there’s debate as to whether it’s true. But the bottom...
January 29, 2015
Yoga is more than what you want your body to look like. What do you want your life to look like? The core philosophy of Yoga - not just seeking fulfillment in the material world while still living in it - offers a structure of restrictions and observances to favor which can lead to a sense of “true fulfillment,” especially to lovers of and...
January 27, 2015
I didn’t realize it, but I have been on a quest for the past 20 years. At first, it felt like I was just trying to figure myself out. I wasn’t happy with my life as it was laid out for me. So like many people in their late teens and early twenties, I bounced around from place to place, trying on different “personality outfits” to see which...
January 20, 2015
I just finished filling out a WRAP plan with the help of my therapist. WRAP stands for Wellness Recovery Action Plan. The plan can be found at mentalhealthrecovery.com and is free to print out. This isn’t the first time I’ve filled out the plan. Years ago while I was in an acute treatment unit for severe depression (before my bipolar I...