Mania is like a friend that everybody likes, but you know she’s going to get you in trouble eventually. If you take your pills regularly, that’s usually enough to keep her at bay. But sometimes she enters through the backdoor and if you’re fed up with your flat-lined life, you invite her in and the circle is complete.
There are a few things you can do to kick the mania out without visiting a psychiatrist. If none of it works, do not hesitate to make that visit. Your life is at stake and while it’s all fun and games in the beginning, you know very well it’s a slippery slope and you’ll eventually reach the point of no return.
Here is my checklist for when mania takes over:
The most important activity you can do to get rid of mania is to get a good sleep. When I’m manic, I sleep 3-4 hours a night and I get up fresh and ready for a brand new day. It sounds great but it can’t last. I can go on like this for a week, maybe two, then it starts going south. 8-hour sleep during the manic phase can do wonders.
During mania, you eat less. You’re full of energy and too hyped to stop and have a slow lunch. You should eat even more than usual because (I assume) you’re in motion (I know I am) and you burn a lot of calories. I always lost weight when manic. I was all over Ljubljana, always moving, walking, or running. Eating too, but not enough to slow me down.
The only drugs you should take are the prescription ones. I know a joint can slow you down, but there are other ways. Uppers, like cocaine, MDMA, and other synthetic drugs are a big no-no. Why would you need uppers? You’re manic. You’re already above everyone and you’re sober! If you have to drink alcohol, I’d suggest a beer or a glass of wine. No liquor. Beer is a downer. Down is good when you’re manic.
Do the activities that relax you. That’s easier said than done. For instance, reading a book relaxes me, but it’s hard for me to read a book when I’m manic. I just can’t concentrate properly. I tried going to the cinema once, but they kicked me out after five minutes as I was bothering other people. Visiting a sports match may help. I tried that too but ended up running around the stadium. Nobody kicked me out and at least I used the surplus of my energy. Go to a spa. Dance. Climb a hill. Sit on a bench and watch the people passing by. Whatever works for you.
I know this seems contrary to the previous advice but it’s not. I said you should do the things that relax you but you should avoid the activities that boost your energy level. Like running at a stadium full of people. By minimizing activities I mean not being in motion all the time. There were days I would go out at six in the morning and come back 24 hours later. I was everywhere. A coffee here, a breakfast there, a hike up the castle hill, lunch at a restaurant, meeting strangers in the old town. My tempo was crazy, but I needed to move around. I needed to burn energy but all I did was get more of it. So my advice to you, my brothers in arms, is to do the necessary things and drop all the rest.
I hope my checklist will help somebody. If you’re bipolar, you probably have a similar one. You know what can and should be done. The real problem is: do you want it to be done? Maybe the list will help a relative or a friend. Drop your thoughts in the comment. I’d love to hear from you.
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Agreed. And if your at the point where you hate the bed or cant sleep Seroquel is an excellent "antipsychotic" that will even put normies to sleep. Even while SUPER MANIC it makes one feel "little kid tired". Just ask your doctor about it obviously. -XB
This is such great advice!