Category Archives: Being Useful and Productive

Why I write this blog

Over the last number of years I have made one field of study a priority – me and this illness we all share. Over time I have come to some conclusions and developed these three absolutes for myself. They reflect my beliefs about how this illness affects my life and how to deal with the affects in a positive way.

1. I have BP 1 and left unchecked my life is a disaster
2. That medications and a good medical and non medical support team can only help to a point. Achieving mental wellness is mostly up to me.
3. That a strong spiritual foundation of faith and hope, based on an unshakeable belief, can give me the spiritual character and mental strength and emotional control to balance my life.

I truly believe that these three things have allowed me to have a useful and productive life for the last number of years. Yes, I still fall off the rails once in a while, but never to the points of the highs and lows that I have experienced in the past.

I began to talk to fellow sufferers of BP and this caused me to developed my four truths of Bi-Polar:
1. Bi-Polar as an illness is as individual as the people that suffer from it.
2. Medication is essential in stabilizing our minds.
3. Developing a strong spiritual self is essential in overcoming our mental anguish and emotional turmoil.
4. We, as Bi-Polar sufferers, can be useful and productive members of society.
These truths were developed to make some sense in my own mind of the things I was coming across when I spent time with fellow sufferers and through them seeing in myself.
What I kept seeing was:
We are all individuals and this is not a one size fits all illness. Once the proper medications were found, and taken (this is a very important step, we became mentally stable, but this only dealt with our rapid mood swings and removed the brain fog.
To overcome our mental anguish and emotional upheavals we need something more. Once we found and began to incorporate this spiritual aspect we could become useful and productive members of society.

That has become my goal to help others to find their way to being useful and productive members of society.

Keep to the path, the hard one. The easy one does not go anywhere.

We can be useful and productive members of society

I apologize to my followers, I came down with pneumonia in late January and it just will not go away. I have been down again and unable to write.  Hopefully things will be more stable from this point on.

My fourth truth is that we can be useful and productive members of society.

This statement does not in any way contain the words “Success” or “Successful”.  The reason for this is simple, I had a great misconception about what success was and really had no idea what being successful was either.  Because of that I spent years chasing an unreachable dream as a sufferer of BP.

The fact is we sufferers of BP cannot handle stress and we get stressed very easily. Things stress us out that do not stress others, but learning to over come the things that stress us is possible. What I found was that when I embarked on the path to success in the way society currently defines success “The fact of getting or achieving, wealth, respect, or fame.” Merriam- Webster Dictionary.

I found my self crashing so badly that I could no longer function. Then repeating the process over and over. The Twelve steps programs give a definition of insanity as “Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”  I spent all my time trying to be successful – Trying to achieve wealth, respect and fame – without the ability or tools to actually be able to be successful, all I ever did was stress myself out.

One day I came across a statement about “Living usefully” and this sparked the idea of maybe trying to do things a little different. Living usefully and being productive is very different from seeking wealth, respect and fame. When I clean my house, make my bed and do my laundry, show up for work on time and do my job ( being productive) or do something useful for someone, wealth, respect or fame are the last thing on my mind.

I found that I am not stressed out if I keep my mind on being useful and productive. Stress only enters into my life when my expectations of myself or my perceived expectations of others take over.  That is definitely a topic for a future blog. Trying to climb the ladder of success as defined by our society is eliminated when you set your sights on usefulness and productivity.

What I have learned to do is bring that mindset of usefulness and productivity to my life and not worry about success as defined by societies definition. In doing so I found a type of success that I was previously unaware. Success that is not based on wealth, respect or fame, but on being useful to others. Those others being my employer, my friends and those around me.  The more I have focused on being useful and productive and made this my ambition, the more I found that peace and serenity that is promised us.

Keep to the path, the hard one. The easy one does not go anywhere.