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Diary of a Self-Help Book Junkie

Diary of a Self-Help Book Junkie

My name is Lisa and I’m a Self-Help book junkie. Yes. There. I can admit it. I’ve read them all, from Dr. Phil to Gretchen Rubin. The Happiness Project, Choosing Happiness, The Joy of Less, The Bounce Back Book, The Miracle Morning, The Motivation Manifesto and many, many more of these “how to” books line the shelves in my home office. I even read How to Finish Your Dissertation Once and For All and Get On With Your Life while doing my doctoral work. (Great book by the way).

So, what am I up to now?



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I CAN’T DO THIS…BUT I’M DOING IT ANYWAY

I CAN’T DO THIS…BUT I’M DOING IT ANYWAY

After many, many trials of meds over the course of about ten years, I had finally found a combination that all but eradicated my mania (with just a shallow bout with hypomania now and then), and left me with depression that I can usually work through with many strategies and “tricks of the trade”. I have been taking the same combination of meds at very high doses for almost 10 years now with no major changes. Until now.



Bipolar Disorder

500 Shades of Grey

In talking to a friend of mine who also lives with bipolar about my extreme fatigue and aimlessness, he told me it sounded like depression to him. We discussed it for a bit, the various shades depression takes on from time to time: the listlessness, hopelessness, times when the world just seems to exist in a monochromatic shade of grey.

I realized then, that he was quite right. I’m not “unhappy” necessarily, I’m not sleepy per se, but I feel heavy, weighed down, dragging my body from chair to desk to bed, somehow barely making it through the day and thinking, “ If I could just have a burst of energy, If I could only get motivated, If only I could think more clearly, if only…”



Bipolar Disorder

What Is Wrong With Me?



Do you ever hear the voices inside your head ask yourself, "What is wrong with me?"

I do. All the time. Especially when I am overwhelmed with tasks, duties, obligations and deadlines. I find myself stuck in a perpetual loop of procrastination-based activities. I Facebook. I Pinterest. I do anything that gives me immediate gratification like answering every email the millisecond it beeps on my computer. I find myself sitting and staring at the...


Boundaries

5 Things I Say “No” To



I just read a great article from Haley on The Tiny Twig on saying "no". She's  a blogger and mom of three and busy, busy. In her article she shared that she can't do it all - and that's okay! I began to think seriously about what I say "no" to. Not enough I learned.

Saying "yes" out of guilt

Maybe it's part of my curious personality, or guilt from childhood, but I really struggle with saying those two little letters to people in my life. When I came into my current position as a college professor, I found there were so many new and interesting possibilities and opportunities that I just didn't say no to enough things. And, when I found myself working 50 hours plus per week, I felt trapped and became so depressed I really struggled to complete tasks for daily living. I found myself going to work with yesterday's makeup touched up and perfume instead of a shower.

Taking care of yourself

I've learned to check in with myself, but perhaps more importantly, those individuals in my life whose opinion I respect on topics of goals, tasks and projects. I've also learned that when you are a compulsive "yesser", that when you do finally gain the insight to begin saying no to a few things people really find it difficult to accept. But no matter, I must take care of my health and so I'm learning to say no to more and more things in my life. Here are just a few of them.



Bipolar Disorder

5 Things That Keep Me Going

What Keeps Me Going, Even Though I Live With Bipolar

Like so many of my students, I held it together long enough to get through the school day, but when I left the school grounds, I was, well, frankly, a mess. At least I had the education and intelligence to know something was wrong with me and I could keep asking for help – searching for answers – until my last and current pdoc found the combination of medications 10 years ago that I’m still taking today. But what makes the difference for me on a daily basis?



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Flexibility is the New Black

Tricks and Strategies

I’ve written a lot in past articles about my tricks and strategies for living successfully with Bipolar disorder: supreme organization, tight schedules, religious meds and doctor visits, and positive self-talk. I’ve even written asking for ideas for more strategies to get through the tough times. A toolbox full of strategies for anyone living with a mental illness is a necessity, not a luxury.



Bipolar Disorder

Happy New Year?

As a college professor and single mother of three daughters in college, I find I have many demands placed on my emotional energy. This time of year is so hard, the cold, the dreary days, weigh me down until I feel like I am trudging through my day mired in thick mud.