Bipolar Disorder Does Not Do This


Did you know that bipolar disorder does not discriminate? It doesn’t care if you’re black, white, or purple. It doesn’t care if you’re young, old or in-between. It doesn’t care if you’re male or female. It doesn’t care if you’re married or single. It doesn’t care if you’re blonde, brunette,

or redheaded. It doesn’t care if you’re Catholic, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim, Traditional Chinese,

or whatever spiritual belief you adhere to – Or even if you’re agnostic or atheist! It doesn’t care if you’re rich or poor. It doesn’t care if you graduated from high school or not, or if you have a thousand college degrees.

It doesn’t care what you wear… What your shoe size is… What your favorite color is… What type of ice cream you like… What type of movies you watch… Or anything else.


If you want to gain stability with bipolar disorder, it has nothing to do with any of the above listed things. If you want to gain stability with bipolar disorder, you have to do certain things that will make you stable.

You still have to take your medications every day. You still have to see your doctor and therapist when you’re supposed to. You still have to continue your treatment plan. You still have to get the right amount of sleep. You still have to exercise. You still have to eat a healthy diet. You still have to be productive, so that you can feel a sense of accomplishment at the end

of every day. You still have to have a strong support system and interact with that support system, making sure they know how you’re feeling and what you’re thinking.

You should still be keeping a mood chart and/or journal so you can keep a record of your moods, thoughts and feelings. You should still be being proactive and watching for signs and symptoms so you can notice patterns and avoid bipolar episodes before they happen. You should still have outside interests so that bipolar disorder doesn’t take over your whole life. You should still try to join a bipolar support group (if there is one in your area, or a NAMI group if there isn’t). And you should still find pleasure in your life, do things that make you happy, so that you also have joy in your life.

It’s all these things combined that will bring stability to your life. It’s all about doing the hard work to get the results you want.

I heard this story once about two brothers. One was lazy, but the other was a real go-getter.

Well, they both went to college. The go-getter went because he wanted to – he had hopes, plans, dreams, and goals. The lazy brother went just because his brother was going and, what the heck, his parents were paying for it, after all. College was not easy for the go-getter, but he did his best and studied hard and got his degree, being offered jobs even before he graduated! The lazy brother struggled in college, because it sure wasn’t as easy as he’d thought it would be. He cheated where he could and faked the rest. He passed his courses, and barely graduated. Now, who do you think will be the greater success in life?

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,


Bipolar and Sense of Smell


Did you know that certain odors can have a profound effect on your memory, energy and even your mood swings? Even on your overall health in general? As far as memory, think about it.

For example, think about the smell of baby powder. If you have grown children, and you smell

baby powder, doesn’t it automatically trigger memories of your children when they were babies?

Or if you smell chlorine, don’t you associate it with a swimming pool? An ocean breeze with the beach? The smell of roses with a romantic evening? Just a whiff of a special scent can trigger

a happy, magical memory.

But today, neuroscientists are learning that our sense of smell is worth more than just remembering pleasant memories.

So what does this have to do with bipolar disorder?

Well, new research shows that it can lower our stress levels and even help with insomnia, both of which are problems for people who have bipolar disorder. There is even some research that shows that our sense of smell can help us lose weight, and many people with bipolar disorder struggle with weight because of some bipolar medications which make you gain weight.

Now, some people accuse me of being against natural remedies for bipolar disorder, and my

stand is pretty sure. I am against natural CURES, since there is NO cure for bipolar disorder. I am pretty protective of the people who read my courses and materials, website material and

emails, so I always try to make sure they know the truth. Just be careful to read the small print.

Natural herbs and remedies, etc., like fragrances, are ok, if they help you (always IN ADDITION

TO medication, and never IN PLACE OF it).

The process is complex. But researchers recently discovered how a particular fragrance can change your mood. In a brand-new study from Ohio State University, they exposed subjects to two fragrances – lavender, which is known to have a calming effect, and lemon – which many studies have shown to be invigorating. Subjects were then told to sniff these fragrances before and after a mildly stressful event (in this case, after putting a foot in freezing water). In the tests that followed, scientists uncovered “robust evidence that lemon oil reliably enhances positive mood.” In fact, blood levels of an energizing hormone, norepinephrine, spiked and stayed high for the subjects who smelled the lemony scent, while the subjects who smelled the lavender scent

got no boost.

In an Austrian study, researchers had some participants smell oranges while others smelled

lavender. The two groups felt less anxious, more positive, and calmer when compared with participants who were exposed to no fragrance at all.

Aromatherapy is a big deal these days, making all kinds of claims about lowering stress levels.

Like I said, I’m not against aromatherapy in itself. I’m only against natural CURES (because there is none), remedies, therapies, etc. that claim to have healing properties or tell you to go

off your regularly prescribed medication for bipolar disorder.

Something like aromatherapy, which has been shown to help people with bipolar disorder

(as in the use of lavender I was telling you about), can help you as long as you use it

IN ADDITION TO your regularly prescribed medication.

You should still always check with your doctor first.

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,


Current Bipolar News


What’s new? Hope you are doing well.

To read this week’s news visit:

Here are the news headlines:

Why Are Kids Getting So Many Psych Meds? Profit Drives Prescriptions
DO> Do you agree with this?

What is Keeping us from Treating Mental Health like Physical Health?
DO> Why do you think?

Mentally Ill need more Consideration in Disaster Preparedness Efforts …
DO> I completely agree, don’t you?

Study Says Posture Problems may be a Sign of Bipolar Disorder
DO> This sounds strange, doesn’t it?

Drugging the Vulnerable: Atypical Antipsychotics in Children and the Elderly
DO> Great article, take a look.

For these stories and more, please visit:

Check out all my resources, programs and information for all aspects of bipolar disorder by visiting:

Your Friend,


For Bipolar, This Can Be Good


I read a quote the other day that really made me think: “Our lives improve only when we take

chances – and the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves.” – Walter Anderson (Editor, Parade Magazine)

Wow. Isn’t that profound?

So many people go around in a state of denial. Especially some people when they’re diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

It’s really hard, as a supporter of a loved one who you know has bipolar disorder, to be with them when they deny that they even have the disorder.

That’s one of the biggest areas I talk to people about, because as a supporter you need to be understanding of the stages they go through before they will accept their diagnosis.

Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, in her book On Death and Dying, describes the 5 Stages of Grief, and only the last one is acceptance, and they apply not only to grief, but to bipolar disorder as well.

The 5 stages of grieving are: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and then finally, acceptance.

So denial is the first, where they don’t believe that they even have the disorder. But then they finally arrive at acceptance, and at that point they should be like the quote at the beginning of this post.

But you know what? So should you. Because for ALL of us, we only improve if we take chances, and if we become honest with ourselves.

If your loved one becomes honest with themselves, then they can accept their diagnosis of bipolar disorder, and then they can start learning how to manage it, especially if they do things like join a bipolar support group and go see a therapist, follow my website and blog, etc.

But if you can accept your role as the supporter of someone who does have bipolar disorder and

especially learn as much as you can about the disorder, then you can learn how to help them.

The biggest surprise is that you can learn to help YOURSELF! Yeah, because you need help just as much as your loved one does. Even though all the attention seems to be on your loved one, you do need as much help.

But the first step for both of you is that you have to be honest with yourselves. And like the quote says, it is a risk. It sure isn’t easy! We sometimes don’t like to look at what we see

in the mirror. Sometimes facing ourselves is the hardest thing we have to do. Because it means we have to accept change.

But you know what? Once we can do that, change is a great thing! Our lives begin to improve!

We can do things we never thought we could do before!

Like with your loved one’s bipolar disorder. Think about it. When they were first told, you may have thought it was like a death sentence or something. Or they may have thought that.

But here I’m telling you that it is not only NOT a death sentence, it is a chance to GROW, to

CHANGE! And that is a positive thing. It’s all in how you look at it. I try to always look at things in a positive way, with a positive view. Because of that, I see change as a good thing.

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,


Bipolar Key Words


Today I want to talk about KEY WORDS.

You might be familiar with key words from raising children, as they are sometimes used

in that situation. For example, I know a mom who uses a warning system where she never has to get up from her seat to discipline her children (at least at first). All she does is use key words, like… She’ll say, “That’s one…” Or, “That’s two…” But when she gets to “That’s three…”

Well, then she does have to get out of her seat because then her children know that’s when

there will be discipline for what they failed to stop during the verbal warnings (key words).

I know a couple that uses key words, too. He is a real joker. And he tends to pick on his wife.

Which she doesn’t mind…Usually. Except around other people. So if he is teasing her too much and she is starting to get embarrassed, they have worked out that all she has to say is, “That’s enough,” and he’ll stop. “That’s enough” are the key words they have worked out between them.

Do you see what I’m getting at?


Key words can be very useful in other situations as well.

For example, there is a conductor in the local school, and he uses key words with his “orchestra”

(made up of students).

At the end of a piece of music, he might say, “That was excellent!” Excellent means that they don’t have to practice the piece that week.

He might say, “That was very good!” Very good means that although the piece was

performed well, it could still use some practice.

Or he might say, “That was fine.” Fine means there will definitely be practice on the horizon for that piece!

You see? KEY WORDS.

They can even be used with bipolar disorder.

One woman I know who has bipolar disorder, uses KEY WORDS with her psychiatrist and

his nurse. When she feels as if she is experiencing symptoms of bipolar mania, she calls her psychiatrist and uses the keyword “escalate.” That way, she doesn’t have to go into a long

explanation about what is going on with her – her psychiatrist (or his nurse, if the psychiatrist

is occupied) knows what she is talking about. Because in a previous session they have together

defined what the keyword “escalate” means to her.

When she feels as if she might be experiencing the symptoms of a bipolar depression, she uses

the keyword “de-escalate” in the same manner. Then her psychiatrist knows automatically what

she is talking about and what to do for her. They still talk about what is happening, so that

her psychiatrist knows how severe it is and whether she needs hospitalization or not, but the KEY WORD is at least a beginning and saves time.

What is so good about the KEY WORD concept is that it goes so much further than just “I need help.”

If you or your loved one first sits down with your psychiatrist and defines your key words, the

psychiatrist will automatically know what you’re talking about when you use them on the phone

with them, instead of simply saying, “I need help.”

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,


Bipolar? Sometimes Miracles Hide

Hi, how are you today? I hope you’re doing good.

We’ve all heard of miracles happening to people. Maybe you’ve even experienced a miracle in your own life. Or maybe you don’t believe in miracles.

Bruce Carroll sang a song called, “Sometimes Miracles Hide.”

And people claim to be healed of life-threatening diseases like cancer all the time. Wouldn’t you love it if your loved one were miraculously cured of bipolar disorder? Oh, I’m not talking about those fake miracle cures you see on the Internet. I’m talking about a real miracle cure.

What if the miracle cure is just “hiding,” like the song says? It would be nice, wouldn’t it? Miracles are great. When they happen. But what do you do in the meantime?

I mean, barring any miracle cure being discovered, your loved one is still going to wake up tomorrow and have bipolar disorder. And you’ll wake up still having to deal with the fact that your loved one has bipolar disorder.

What you have to do is deal with the reality of the situation. Your loved one has bipolar disorder. And sometimes it’s hard to deal with that, but you have to. You can pray for a miracle, but you still have to cope while you’re waiting.

So what do you do? Well, that is up to you and your loved one.

There have been some real tragedies where people have claimed to be healed miraculously of their bipolar disorder, so they went off their medication and ended up killing themselves in a bipolar episode.

So what’s the most important thing to do? You make sure that your loved one stays on their medications. But there’s other things you should do as well.

You make sure that they go to see their doctor, psychiatrist and therapist when they’re supposed to. You make sure that they stick to a good sleep schedule. You make sure that they eat right and exercise. You make sure that their life is as stress-free as possible. You make sure that they have a strong support system (besides just you). You make sure that you’re the best supporter you can be.

Show your loved one unconditional love. Listen to them when they talk to you – both to what they do say and to what they don’t say. Be encouraging. Remind them that you are there for them and that they are not alone in their battle against bipolar disorder.

Make the most of the normal periods between episodes. Be alert, and watch for signs and symptoms of an episode, no matter how long it’s been since the last one.

Keep yourself healthy – both physically and emotionally, so you can be strong. And be positive.

Stay hopeful that, miracle or not, your loved one can be stable and successful with bipolar disorder.

Sometimes miracles are of the man-made kind.

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,


Current Bipolar News


What’s new? Hope you are doing well.

To read this week’s news visit:

Here are the news headlines:

Mentally Ill have Reduced Life Expectancy, Study Finds
DO> Do you think it has to be this way? I don’t.

The Pursuit of Happiness Often Backfires
DO> What do you think

The Good News and the Bad News About Mental Health Care in America
DO> Great article, take a look.

May is Mental Health Month
DO> Did you know this?

Bipolar Disorder: 6 Celebrities Who Bravely Speak Out
DO> This is great, don’t you think?

For these stories and more, please visit:

Check out all my resources, programs and information for all aspects of bipolar disorder by visiting:

Your Friend,


Bipolar or Not, Cherish Your Freedom

Hi, how’s it going?

You know, I think we live in the best country in the world. Our country is based on FREEDOM. Unfortunately, sometimes we take it for granted. But we should be very grateful

for it. Many other people do not enjoy the same freedom that we enjoy.

We have the Constitution. We have the Bill of Rights. These things guarantee our freedom.

We are free to go where we want. We are free to do what we want (as long as it doesn’t break the law). But most importantly, we are free to be who we are. And to live the way we want to live.

Sometimes, though, there are things that restrict that freedom. Like your loved one’s bipolar disorder. They can’t always do what they want to do because of it. They can’t always go where they want to go because of it. And they can’t always be who they want to be because of it.

Unfortunately, bipolar disorder is an illness involving extreme mood swings. And many times your loved one won’t be able to predict their moods. It’s not that they want to be depressed – they would rather be who they really are inside all the time. It’s not that they want to be manic – they would rather be who they really are inside all the time. But sometimes these moods get in

the way.

It’s not their fault. It’s their bipolar disorder. You know how your loved one is between episodes. That’s who they really are. It really helps if you can remember that person. The person that your loved one is deep inside. It will help you to handle their episodes better.

Remember who it is you care for, what they are like, how they normally act between bipolar episodes. It will make the episodes a little easier, because you will be able to separate your loved one from the bipolar disorder and its effect on them.

Not being able to be your real self all the time cannot be a pleasant thing. What if you were in your loved one’s shoes? Think about how you might feel. You might feel frustrated. You might get angry at times. You might suffer disappointments. You might even doubt your own judgment at times. You might feel insecure. And yes, sometimes you might get depressed over these things.

Wanting to be yourself, but being restricted from it by your bipolar disorder has got to be one of the hardest things your loved one has to deal with. They should enjoy the same freedom as anyone else. But sometimes their bipolar disorder gets in the way. At those times, your loved one needs you to be even more understanding.

Hopefully, by getting this inside view of some of your loved one’s feelings, you will be able to do that.

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,


Bipolar? Keeping Up Your Enthusiasm

Hi, how are you? I hope you’re doing well.

Have you ever been around an enthusiastic person? It’s hard not to catch their enthusiasm, isn’t it? If they get excited, usually you will get excited as well. It’s hard not to!

But it may be hard to stay enthusiastic if your loved one gets depressed around this time of year.

I know you can’t force them to be enthusiastic if they aren’t, but maybe you can do some things to at least encourage them.

Here are some suggestions:

1. Encourage them to get involved with holiday planning

Activity and productivity are always good for someone who has bipolar disorder. Try to get them to give you some ideas, and get their own creative juices flowing!

2. Have them do the Christmas cards this year

You want to encourage them to think of others and to get their mind off themselves and the way they are feeling, and doing the Christmas cards will be good for them.

3. Have them help you with the holiday baking

Even if you didn’t do any holiday baking last year, do it this year and have your loved one help you with it.

4. Have your loved one make up the Christmas shopping list

Even if you have traditionally been the one to make up the Christmas shopping list every year, let your loved one do it this year. Again, it will (hopefully) get their mind off themselves.

5. Encourage them to help you put up the Christmas tree

Have fun with this – put on some pretty Christmas music to get them in the mood, and then put up the tree together.

6. Have them choose and buy for a child off the store’s Christmas Angel Tree

This will remind your loved one that there are people who are struggling this year, and it might make them feel better to buy a present for a needy child.

Hopefully, your loved one will “catch” your holiday enthusiasm this year

Dealing with Bipolar Disorder? Waiting for Something to Happen?

Hi, how’s it going? I hope you’re doing well.

Today I want to talk about “waiting for something to happen.”

Think back – when you were little, weren’t you always “waiting for something to happen?”

Like getting to the next grade in school… And vacations…And birthdays…And holidays…

And impatiently waiting to grow up.

But here’s the shocking truth: People who are always “waiting for something to happen” never become successful. It’s the people who, in spite of all the odds against them, make it a point in their lives to be successful. No more waiting – they just make things happen. And sometimes that takes some creative thinking on the part of the person.

Like a job, for example. There’s no question in the United States that the unemployment rate is high. I have noticed that many people are sort of waiting for a job to land in their lap. I know lots of my friends like this. They are just “waiting for something to happen.”

On the other hand…I have a few friends that go out there and find a job and create opportunities for themselves. This reminds me of bipolar disorder.

Many supporters and survivors just wait for bipolar episodes to improve magically on their own.

But it doesn’t work that way. You have to be proactive. You can’t just sit around “waiting

for something to happen.”

But here’s the truth about the economy and bipolar disorder: There may not be a job out there for you if you are dealing with bipolar disorder.

Being a supporter, you may need to take time off work to help your loved one. And you will probably never know when this will happen. It’s difficult to work a job under these conditions. Many supporters have lost their jobs because of their loved one having bipolar disorder. And then they find it almost impossible to get another job. When the truth is, they would probably rather be at home with their loved one, anyway.

So what is the solution?

Many people have found the answer in starting their own home businesses. Remember, I told you about being proactive. Being proactive would be starting your own business instead of “waiting for something to happen,” like waiting for that perfect job to come to you.

Remember, I also talked about creative solutions, that you might have to approach things a little differently (more creatively). That’s where people are coming up with the idea for starting their

own home businesses.

This type of “job” is so much more well-suited for someone who has bipolar disorder or their supporter.

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,