“Without a solid foundation, you will have trouble creating anything of value” erickaopenheimer.com

I always begin writing each post with the same premise in mind, “bipolar is as individual as the people that suffer from it”. That individuality also applies to the tools and methods used to manage bipolar disorder. When I talk on the things I use to manage my bipolar I am talking about what worked for me. These suggestions are just that suggestions, but they may work for you. Then again they may not. But at least it is somewhere to start. And that is the real issue, we have no idea where to start on this journey of healing and growing. If you want to grow your inner child to match your adult frame, in other words, connect with your authentic self you need a starting point.

You can do nothing without a proper diagnosis and, more importantly the proper medication, that works for you. The proper diagnosis and proper medication give’s you a stable mind with which to work. The next thing you need is an unbiased observer, today we call them therapists or counsellors. There is one other ingredient and that is knowledge. Mental wellness is all about knowledge and learning about ourselves. The more informed we are the easier our struggles may be. If you don’t know, you can not act.

I am fond of the sailing ship analogy as it portrays in the minds eye you are sailing a magnificent ship across calm waters. A proper diagnosis and proper medications are the fair wind in you sail and your rudder. The therapist or councillor is the dock worker that helps you untie from the dock by helping you change your thinking and challenges your false beliefs.  Connecting with and living as your authentic self becomes your course to your own tropical island.

If you try to sail away on your journey to find your authentic self without the fair wind and rudder, not willing to gain any knowledge and not having the aid of the dock worker, you are just a rudderless ship that is going to hit the rocks again and again.

My own journey of being improperly diagnosed for decades and my unwillingness to listen to anyone; caused me to have that cyclic existence of lose everything, get patched up and set out again, do well for a bit, then lose everything again. This cycle would repeat over and over until the day I was properly diagnosed with Bipolar 1, found meds that worked and spent two years in a therapist’s office. My experience is not that different than many others who have honestly shared their experiences with me. That is why I can say with certainty that even though we are individuals and differ in the presentation and control of our illness to some degree, without a proper diagnosis and proper medication. Coupled with the aid of a good therapist and a willingness to learn about ourselves and our illness. Our journey to connect with our authentic self will be futile.

The good new is we can incorporate all these aspects the day we get our proper diagnosis. It takes time to find meds that work, and you may have to kiss a few frogs before you find a therapist you click with. This takes time but you can set your course towards developing a strong connection with your authentic selves by learning on your own about this illness and how it affects you. To find what works for you in managing your bipolar disorder and just as importantly what doesn’t work. This is all knowledge

Progress is slow at first but as you progress towards your goal of connecting with your authentic self you will find your mental anguish and emotional turmoil will slowly subside.

These are the first things we need to do embark on that journey towards mental wellness, to make our lives “Ducky” even with bipolar disorder.

As we conclude this week’s blog post always remember our battle with bipolar disorder is with and in our minds. Our battle is with our illness not with other people, places, situations or other external things.  Remember our battle for mental health will always be with our minds and our minds alone.

The great inspirational speaker, Jim Rohn, said:” Work harder on yourself than anything else.”

I say,” Work hard on yourself and everything else falls into place like magic.”

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

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Many other people blog on bipolar and related subjects. Mental wellness is all about knowledge and learning about ourselves. The more informed we are the easier our struggles may be. Each week I attach a blog written by someone else that I found interesting that may inform you as well.  This is another author’s work I am just attaching their blog for you.  I hope you enjoy this week’s blog created by Becky Wicks on the NewLifeOutlook website.