Very often with the territory of bipolar comes anxiety. This can be distressing, but the good news is that with time, effort and knowledge it can be managed well. I’ve written a new book called ‘Bipolar Feelings’ which discusses this aspect of anxiety in bipolar. Overall, I aimed to make it an uplifting and accessible book for people who struggle with both of these states of mind. I am an artist and a writer (not a mental health professional) but I know these experiences from personal experience.
For all of us, feelings can be a minefield. But they can also be very rich to mine for creativity, joy and living a deep and meaningful real life. We know that when we’re around people who seem to be shut down emotionally we can struggle to communicate with them. And this is also true with ourselves (intrapersonally). This usually happens when our feelings overwhelm us and a state of anxiety is created. Then we need to do what we can to find peace and solace. For many of us, a walk in nature, meditation and other soothing activities will help. It needs to be something that is genuinely soothing (even baking a cake will do)! Social media will not help. It needs to be an activity that promotes mindfulness.
Feelings need to be felt and it really helps if we have the awareness to label them. This is a great first step to being able to calm ourselves down. Those of us with bipolar (or even anxiety alone) know that our feelings can go up and down very fluidly or even suddenly. We need to bring an attitude of empathy and self-compassion to ourselves when this is happening. It may take some practice, but taking good care of our feelings is more than an art and a science. It is as basic to our self-care as diet and exercise. We can only truly solve problems when our feelings are calm enough and we can access our logic as well.
If we ignore our feelings they just get louder. When the anxiety alarm is ringing at full blast in our system we need to know how to de-activate it. While we are learning how to be kind with our feelings we may need the help of others. (No-Panic can also be a source of help in this.) We also need our own support and understanding. I realise that when we are feeling anxious we may be feeling reactive and even be inclined to abandon ourselves. But we need to do the very opposite. We need to approach our heightened feelings with consideration and respect. It will help us to calm down.
It is never too late to learn skills to help ourselves with this or to discover new avenues of creativity and strengths that can help us. Our intuition can also guide us. If you think these reflections could be of help to you, I very much hope that you’ll enjoy my book and benefit from it. Bipolar Feelings by Sophie Rose Peters on Amazon
By: Sophie Rose Peters
How can No Panic help?
No Panic specialises in self-help recovery and our services include:
Providing people with the skills they need to manage their condition and work towards recovery.
Our aim is to give you all of the necessary advice, tools and support that you will need to recover and carry out this journey. No Panic Recovery Programs