Bipolar: A Fighting Attitude


You know I like to hike, right? It’s where I do some of my best thinking. And, usually, that’s about bipolar disorder, of course. But I was hiking one day and thinking about the staggering numbers of people who have the disorder, are supporting someone who does, or know of someone who has it. And the numbers are staggering. Then I was thinking about the difference between people when it comes to bipolar disorder. I hear from a lot of people in response to my daily emails, courses/systems, website, etc. And it’s almost like they’re divided in half. Half the people are really struggling with it, and the other half seem to have mastered it.

Well, maybe mastered it is the wrong way to put it – but they control and manage the disorder instead of it controlling or managing them. These are the people I like to hear from, because they have that “fighting attitude.” And that’s what you have to have when it comes to bipolar disorder – a FIGHTING ATTITUDE.

There are those people who take the diagnosis lying down, just like in a boxing match where you throw in the towel and give up. They don’t believe that stability is a possibility for them. Those people don’t do the right things, so they don’t get stable. But have you ever known someone who no matter what happens to them, they fight back? Like cancer survivors. I think it’s all in having a “fighting attitude.” They don’t take it laying down – they fight back! And many of them do win.

Even a doctor will tell you that your attitude towards your illness (whatever it is) can be crucial to your recovery. Well, that’s as true for bipolar disorder as it is for cancer. You’ve got to come out of your corner fighting. That’s the way to control it.

Of course, just like any fight, you have to be prepared. You have to have strategies. You have to have plans in place. And you have to have these things in advance, just like an army does in a war. Like, you need to sit down with your loved one and decide what to do in case they need to go in the hospital.

Strategies would include:

• A better lifestyle

• Eating a healthy diet

• Exercising

• Keeping a good sleep schedule

• Staying productive

• Attending a support group

• Having a strong support system

• Adhering to all treatment

Those who look at battling bipolar disorder as just that – a battle – and are willing to do what it takes to win, do find success. It is possible to recover from the disorder. I know, because I’ve gotten so many success stories. But all success stories have one thing in common: They did whatever they had to do to gain stability, including those things I just listed. They had a “fighting attitude.” That’s what your loved one will need to have, too, to gain stability with their bipolar disorder. They need to do all the basic things you need to do to become stable…But it’s just as important for them to have that fighting attitude.

Well, I have to go!


Your Friend,




  1. I agree with you .i ahve had biopolar for 37 years. you must take your medicine. i would get better and think i didn’t need it. I like to read your emails. they help me. you are so right about things. GENEVA

  2. Thank you for reminding me about a “fighting attitude”..I am having one of those weeks that I needed to hear it from someone who truly understands.

  3. I am bipolar manic depressive also, personality disorder Post traumatic distress. I love all your articles you send me some of them hit head on. I have been going to meetings counseling, staying busy and readininceg everything you send me. I am going to start College again. I will be taking something very challenging. Computer Science. I have been fighting these diseases since I was 22 yrs.old. I am almost 52 now. I am still fighting!

  4. Hey all! Dave, exellent topic. Remind to ALL that fighting attidude.. not give up what ever it (desesase) does. That you have 24/7/365 have some prepared plan to tackle it down again and again and again.. and again.. but that it is … fighting. and at least here, we do. We as me and my wife. No, our life is not yet perfect or even great.. but slowly we do go that direction.

    -Pekka from Finland.

  5. Dear Dave and readers,
    Lynn here, recovered alcoholic and cancer thriver. I survived breast cancer this yr., w/positive attitudes and affirmations, and LOTSA prayer. I practiced many tools that I’d learned in Alcoholics Anonymous: Keep it simple; One Day @ A Time; say your prayers; follow directions; ask for help; THEN allow others to help you!!, and prolly others. And I’ve said it b/4 here, and I’ll say it again. I take my meds everyday, RELIGIOUSLY, cuz I don’t wanna be on tonite’s news, having injured another and mebbe then myself. I’m finally stable on my meds, and I’d kinda like to STAY THAT WAY. Tks., Dave, for continuing to put out these supportive and informative emails. Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Yr. to all , in 2013.
    Lynn Sawyer, alcoholic, cancer thriver

  6. I read your emails frequently. I have battle d bipolar disease for many years. I have been prescribed at least 30-40 neuroleptic, antidepressants and antipsychotic medications over the years. I have gone to therapy, support groups, etc. My condition is more debilitating all the time. I am now also suffering symptoms of chronic brain degenerative disease and most medications are toxic or have very serious adverse effects. I can no longer work, drive or live without supportive care. BUT I AM STILL FIGHTING. There are days i am hanging on by a thead, but I am still fighting.

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