It’s A Balancing Act


One thing that has been made crystal clear over the past few years since being formally diagnosed with bipolar is that bipolar is a balancing act. It’s ironic I know, since we are generally classified as “unbalanced people”.
Little does the world know that to live with bipolar and function on the daily, we out balance anyone. Can I get an AMEN!?

I recently over stimulated myself. I went out too many days in a row, I had too many late nights, and met up with too many people. This might sound like a normal social life, but with bipolar there needs to be “a balance”. Too much of anything is asking for trouble. 

When I’m over-stimulated I get super anxious, I feel like I’m a ticking bomb waiting to go off. I feel exhausted to the point that I’m shaking and I’m super reactive. So at the height of my over-stimulation I did the only thing I could think of – I napped. I crashed hard and long. I slept and when I woke up I felt manageable. 

Balance – you can’t just do what everyone else is doing. You can’t have late night after late night without repercussion, you can skip out on your medication. I take sleeping pills and if I don’t plan accordingly, taking them and waking up the next day can be lethal. There has to be a plan of action. 

As much as people go with the flow, it’s not like that with bipolar. You have to plan and check off the boxes for living your balanced functional life. You don’t just “wing it”. Sure in some aspects of life you can but others not so much. Sometimes I feel frustrated and I feel  like my life is being restricted BUT in reality by me sacrificing having “late nights” I’m gaining so much more. 

Are you eating right, excercising, sleeping enough hours, taking your medication, going to doctors appointments? These are some of the boxes on our checklist that to some may seem optional BUT are not. Everything I listed allows me to live a balanced life. I make a conscientious effort and when I falter in any of those departments my quality of life is hindered. 

Sure people with bipolar have their checklists of things they do and I’m not taking away from that, I’m merely stating that to function or rather to thrive someone with bipolar has to put in a heck of a lot of effort compared to the average person. And by living their daily life they are slapping the stigma that people with bipolar are unbalanced. We are not unbalanced and if you step into our shoes you’ll see that to go day to day we are more resilient and balanced than most. 

– Steph

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6 thoughts on “It’s A Balancing Act

  1. Hey Steph, thank you for sharing this. Even though my mental illnesses are slightly different with my traumatic brain injury I can still relate. Especially with the anxiety/depression area. I 100 percent have to have an action plan for my days. Like you said it is about balance. Until the day (hopefully) my brain becomes normal again I have to remember I am not like the (normal) person and have to schedule my day accordingly to my mental health issues. When I don’t I will either explode or breakdown. This post is a great reminder. Thank you. Wish you all the best. Look forward to get more insight from you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Travis,

      I’m glad you were able to take something away from my post. I thought it was a nice way to put life with a mental illness into perspective… but the fact your situation is encompassed and you can relate is great. There’s so much that goes into “living” a simple life, never take away from all that you do to make it happen. You are stronger and more resilient than you realize.

      – Steph

      Liked by 1 person

  2. i have bipolar too and i totally relate! it’s all about balancing yourself, physically and emotionally. it’s so funny that you said balance, because it’s one of the ideas that i think about the most. i actually think of life as a tightrope, and most people have balance enough to stay on/have a safety net beneath, but with bipolar, i feel that i don’t naturally have either! kind of a complicated metaphor, but it helps me remember that i need to do extra to compensate and stay up 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • A tightrope is the perfect analogy! And I totally agree that when you have bipolar you need to do a bit more than the average Joe to keep your balance. It’s a bit more work but the pay off is worth it!

      Thanks for your great comment!

      – Steph

      Like

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