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How I'm Tackling New Year's Resolutions With My Bipolar Disorder

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The new year can be hard for some people, because it’s a time to think about what has happened to you over the course of the last year. I often think about what I could have done better or things that didn’t go my way. This year I am going to push myself to find a positive outlook on what has happened during these last 12 months, as well as be hopeful for what’s to come.

• What is Bipolar disorder?

New Year’s resolutions are a tradition followed by many to either accomplish a goal or change a trait in the upcoming year. Instead of creating one large resolution, I thought it would be better to have multiple smaller resolutions to tackle different aspects of my life, being realistic for what I’m going through. Bipolar disorder is a beast of its own. During the holidays it can be so much worse. There are such high expectations of happiness and joy. While people are out being festive, I’m just trying to make it through the day, hoping no one will realize I’m struggling and putting a damper on their holiday spirit. While the holiday season can be difficult, I do still plan on finding a resolution for the new year. I’ve decided this upcoming year I am going to hold myself accountable.

One goal of mine is to acknowledge the little improvements. Instead of beating myself up that I didn’t do something right or if I didn’t do anything at all, I need to recognize my efforts and the fact that good intentions were there. As long as I am trying to better myself even in the smallest way possible, I know I will be taking baby steps in the right direction.

Going into the new year I plan to stop judging myself so harshly. I think this is going to be the hardest one for me. I am going to try to start off small, but by the end of next year I want to change my mindset that if I make a mistake, it isn’t going to be the end of the world. I am determined to make that change. Whether or not I am able to fully do a 360 in that mentality, I’ll go back to my previous resolution and acknowledge the little improvements I am able to accomplish.

Another aspiration I will try to carry out is the typical goal many people decide on. I want to start eating a healthier diet and being more active. It is another aspect of my life that needs more attention than what I am giving it now. My bipolar disorder often gets in the way of me living a healthy lifestyle. I know by eating better it will help stabilize the severity of my mood swings. I just need to push myself into getting into a routine that allows me to keep this promise to myself. I want to start running when I’m feeling anxious, I can’t get out of my head or when I have too much energy from being in my manic phase. I am going to try these typical goals because they all tie back into how I cope with my condition.

It doesn’t matter what you end up choosing as your New Year’s resolution, as long as you find something you want to work towards. It can be a small goal you wish to accomplish relatively soon or a large goal you plan to work on for a long period of time. This new year doesn’t necessarily mean a new you, it just means you plan on bettering yourself in any way you can.

Photo by Ben Koorengevel on Unsplash

Originally published: December 30, 2019
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