Friday, April 20, 2007

Doing before feeling

It occurred to me this morning that perhaps I spend too much time trying to assess how I feel. I might feel a lot better if I just went about my work and play without thinking about my mood. As I get active my mood will fall into place wherever it will.

I think I've spent too much time over the past couple of years in a relatively high mood. Now all appears gray, because I have a hard time feeling the happiness I've grown accustomed to. And this lack of happiness is making me feel down. I'm not satisfied with this -what might very well be - normal state. And I'm focussing on the mood, rather than just living.

But this seems to become so much a part of our bipolar existence - this thinking about how we're feeling. Surely this isn't a "normal" way to live. Do "normal" people wake up in the morning and think to themselves, Now how do I feel? Am I up or am I down? Don't "normal" people just get up and start thinking of their plans for the day?

Is it healthy to always be so introspective and focus on our feelings?


Dream Writer said...

I totally agree with you. For me, its the opposite...Since taking the Lithium I've been happy, creative, productive, and just so Peppe!

But, at the same time, I am waiting for the fall. I am not used to being so happy like this..I question it sometimes, Is this a manic phase? Am I hypomanic? Is this a Hypersexual act (with my husband)? Or am I just feeling normal with having the "Good Feeling" of wanting to be with my husband :)

When I was in a dark deep depression over this past winter...I questioned it every day..when am I going to feel better? And If I felt was "How long is this going to last?"

So I get you, Marja...I totally understand what you are saying.

"Normal" people don't question their moods...Before I was diagnosed with Bipolar...I questioned my moods all the time, I even told the kids that I would do something with them, but it depended on my mood and how I felt and still I didn't realize I was bipolar.

Sarah said...

that is such a good question and honestly from a christian perspective I think God shows us what's wrong when it's time for us to know it's wrong you know??
Too much introspection will lead to speculation and that can be tricky...

Other than tht my Pery pictures are up if you want to see;;;

Syd said...

Hmmm... great questions. I'm still new to the diagnosis, but my experience is that I haven't focused on my moods enough, which is probably why it took so long to get a diagnosis. I knew that I was depressed, but rather than honestly acknowledging those moods, I spent so much time and energy trying to deny them or to fight through them.

At least for now, I think that recognizing and acknowledging my moods is an important part of getting a handle on things and learning to recognize potential episodes before they get out of hand.

That said, I do agree that sometimes we have to act in spite of the way we feel. Today I had to force myself to go out to enjoy the beautiful, warm sunshine. I didn't *feel* like doing it, but I'm so glad that I did. Am I still depressed? Yes, but I know that I feel much better now than I would have if I'd given in to the urge to stay curled up on the sofa all day.

Bipolar Wellness Writer said...

When I was feeling depressed for the greater part of six years--and keeping a mood chart every day--I was totally focused on my moods. Although the information I accumulated was helpful, I never felt worse.

When I started going to the doctor of integrative medicine, I stopped reading about bipolar mood disorder, I stopped researching this illness (although I had done this for almost ten years), and I stopped talking about my moods.

For the first time in a long time, I felt great for 10 months at a time.

Now I believe there must be a happy medium. Still, for the most part I concentrate on wellness rather than illness and it makes a big difference.

P.S. Thanks for sharing your story about walking on my blog.

Polly said...

Sometimes I feel that I focus too much on analyzing my moods. Then when I've been feeling well for a relatively long time, though, I stop analyzing them, and because I've stopped, I don't always notice quickly enough when I start feeling bad or too hyper. I think I'm at a baseline, but I'm not.