Act as if #choosingyourmood

mood-act-as-if

sad inside – ‘putting on a face’

With the training I do, I have found that people who suffer from mood disorders and perhaps surprisingly those who care for them have low expectations of being able to choose a mood and then be in their chosen mood.

People who are making good recoveries from mood disorder and people who I see as doing very well in life have far stronger beliefs in their ability to choose their mood.

I have previous written about how people choose their moods by first choosing an attitude. Put simply this is a matter of ‘act as if’.

If you were to change your breathing to be rapid and shallow, like a person having a panic attack, you will almost certainly start to feel anxious. Please do not try this if you are prone to panic attacks. In fact there is no need to do this at all, as you already know it is true.

mood success

Good behaviours can create good moods

If you, now, change your breathing to be both slower and deeper, like a person doing yoga, you will almost certainly start to feel calmer. If you are not familiar with this technique for lessening anxiety, now is the time to meet with an expert who can teach you more about breathing, as it can be the simplest and least expensive way to take more control of your mood.

This is what ‘act as if’ is about. If you act like an anxious person, you will become slightly more anxious. If you act like a depressed person you will become slightly more depressed.

If you act like a calm person you will become a little calmer.

It works!

When it comes to mood we all already do some acting.

  • Can you think where sometimes acting can get us into trouble?

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Still acting as if… #bipolarwellness

More than a year ago I wrote about ‘acting as if’. It is a way of staying well, feeling well and achieving more. When we act as if we are well we will most likely appear well and most likely feel well. The opposite would be to act unwell, to appear unwell and feel unwell. There are reasons to act unwell but it is not a great way to live in the long-term.

Acting well, does not require any great effort. For most of us it is a habit. It is the habit that causes us to say, “ I’m fine” when someone casually asks how we are, and a moment later we think, ‘well, really I’m feeling a bit rough this morning’.

I act as if well almost all the time. The main exceptions are when I am at home. At home I tend to share my aches, pains, anxieties…

By putting all my unwellness into my time at home – largely into the hours of darkness, allows me to carry on acting well all day when out and about. Recently I have met several people I have not seen for years, who have exclaimed, “Wow, you’re looking well”. People are easily fooled by a bit of weight loss, tidy hair, neat clothes and a smile. They are not aware unless I say anything of how little I have been sleeping or that the weight loss seems to be related to serious health issues.

However, there are ‘downsides’ to always acting as if well when you know you are not well. It is reasonable to do this for a while, but if you know things are getting worse…. If you feel you are becoming more ill then at some point the acting has to stop. This is not about having a breakdown in front of the boss (Done this! It is rarely a good idea!). It is more about finding someone you trust and sharing your concerns. Ideally this person you trust will also understand that feeling bad and feeling anxious about feeling bad are natural and not a sign of weakness.

For me, I have reached a point where I cannot carry on doing everything I have been doing. I am fortunate that my only kind of regular employment is with a mental health charity, who understand anxiety is normal and anxiety can from time to time be disabling. I have not forgotten though what it is like to be unsure how your employer will react to admissions of emotional weakness. It could be that you will never feel able to act anything other than well when at work… even so, everyone needs sooner or later to find someone they can share their anxieties with… we all need a time when we can behave just according to our feelings, and for a while forget about the clever idea that our feelings usually follow the way we act.

I would love to hear your views on this article.

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A Different Approach – ToxaPrevent

After about 11 years med-free = no prescription medications at all, I accepted a prescribed antipsychotic drug to help me sleep. I have found that I sleep a little more when I take this, yet each day I am so very tired and doing (what seems to me) to be far too little.

TOXAPREVENT ‘Tim Animation’ – “Animation about the toxins, heavy metals and histamine that affect your digestive tract and skin.”

I have met with a nutritional therapist who has suggested that my troubles may be largely due to excess toxins. If this is so, then I need a way to get these toxins out of my body (and especially out of my brain). Can this be done?

Perhaps the best hope is with a product called ToxaPrevent(R). This film explains about toxins in the body and how ToxaPrevent may do exactly what I need it to do.

The instructions I have are to take both the powder (for detoxing from upper digestive system) and the capsule(s) (for detoxing from lower digestive system) 30 minutes before each meal.

I have just taken first dose of each, so now to cook, eat and see how I feel later.

If your life were planned for you

“If your life were planned for you…” Has it ever seemed to you that everything that happens has been pre-planned? Little bits of deja vue perhaps or you’ve got a good idea about what is about to happen.

I have experienced a lot of this lately. The realisation that there is a far greater power at work than I grew up believing in has been eye-opening.

I believed I was doing good. I believed I was good father for my children, a productive helpful worker at each business I worked for or at.

Looking back now, after the various interactions I have had with friends and relatives, I now question just who I was and what I was achieving. It seems I was less than I wanted to be in both ways.

Let us see what today brings. More ups and downs. More ups than downs perhaps.

Wishing you peace and love

Roger

mood success

Good behaviours can create good moods

mood-act-as-if

sad inside – ‘putting on a face’

A Whole New Life working with the Public Health Collaboration #PHCUK

Yesterday, I was able to return to presenting to health professionals.

This time was different. Rather than having a focus mood management or any specific diagnosis, I shared the P.H.C. message of… ‘EAT REAL FOOD.

This message being supported by ‘AVOID FAKE FOOD’ and ‘BE ACTIVE EVERYDAY’

What does this have to do with the title of this blog, “Rethinking Bipolar”?

Many drivers for psychiatric diagnoses are to do with what people have been eating and drinking. Personally, I have found the best thing for sustaining healthy moods, having energy, working well, getting on with people, making friends and living in a happy home has been to consistently… EAT REAL FOOD.

EATing REAL FOOD makes it easier to AVOID FAKE FOOD and to BE ACTIVE EVERYDAY.

Find Out More about having a Real Food Lifestyle

Public Health Collaboration – How You Can Find Zero-Cost Support for Your NHS Practice #PHCUK

I spent yesterday with 15 other Public Health Collaboration ambassadors. We are all ready to help Health Care Professionals to help their patients.

Our focus is on helping everyone to have the best possible blood sugar and insulin levels. In doing so we are helping to; reverse diabetes, fatty liver diseases, reduce obesity, make cancer/heart-attacks/strokes less likely, protect eyesight and so on.

To get zero-cost support for your NHS practice, click on this map to be taken to the PHC-UK ambassadors pageFinding a Local PHC-UK AmbassadorThat’s me – in Grantham, Lincolnshire.

Currently, there are only about 200 PHC ambassadors covering the whole of the UK (News-flash: If the page is up to date then there are now 236 ambassadors in 201 locations.)

More good news: The Public Health Collaboration charity are training more new PHC ambassadors in Manchester next weekend.

If diagnosed as bipolar, how much might lowering unhealthy carbs while increasing healthy fats help? #LCHF #notjustbipolar

Does HCLF cause mood troubles? Does HFLC help to eliminate mood troubles?

A bit of a generalization here:

  • Countries that have been early adopters the Standard American Diet (often called the SAD diet) have far higher rates of mood disorder, including bipolar.
  • Countries that seem to have resisted the Standard American Diet or have been slow to adopt it have far lower rates of mood disorder, including bipolar.

This does not prove anything as there are probably hundreds of other factors. It is probably just as true that countries that have more televisions per capita have higher rates of depression. This does not show TV causes depression but may, at most, suggest some weak link between affluence and more mood troubles.

Healthy brains are made mainly from healthy fat and healthy cholesterol. In whatever way we might choose to deprive ourselves of healthy fat and healthy cholesterol we will run into brain health troubles. Choosing not to eat cholesterol does not seem to be a problem. If eating good food a healthy human liver will make healthy cholesterol as needed. (Recent research indicates that almost any cell in the body can also make healthy-cholesterol if it is a well-nourished cell.) Depriving ourselves of essential fats (and I believe, going very low on some of the non-essential fats) will lead to brain deterioration and mood troubles.

Energy: The bulk of the energy in our food and drink always has to come from either fat or carbs. (It has become clearer-and-clearer that getting more than about 20% of our energy from protein damages the liver, kidneys, may even increase the likelihood of diabetes) We need to think, ‘fat or carbs?’ This is a decision I believe most people need to make.

The S.A. Diet has for a few decades been high in unhealthy fats and exceptionally high in unhealthy carbs. This is a lethal combination for both the body and the brain.

I have been teaching about diet for a long time and used to warn people against all sorts of things that I now tend to suggest people investigate eating more of, such as saturated fat (although I stress the importance of this being from organic farming). Examples include butter if you like the taste of it or coconut oil for the strict vegans. Moderation is still important, as you have to stick within what your digestive system, liver and blood vessels can handle in any one hit.

What have I seen in people around me? Those consuming higher levels healthy fats and very little of the least healthy (highly processed) carbs are both physically and mentally fitter and are better at the sort of thing Tom Wootton talks about, which is to be able to function well almost regardless of emotional upsets.

And me, personally? It has been a long road, in which I have used many tools and done a lot of experimenting on myself. I am convinced that consuming quite a lot of healthy fat every day has been doing me good. It is, for me, just one of hundreds of dietary and other changes I needed to make. What does not work for me is when I add refined carbs on top of my high-ish-fat plant-based meals.

Example: So far today…

  • The only food I had before driving to a meeting in Nottingham was 20g of 100% chocolate (less than 1% sugar and very high in saturated fat)
  • I next ate between 2pm and 3pm when I had a large ripe avocado, olives, walnuts and loads of vegetables, finished off with another 20g of that same chocolate.
  • Currently, I wait to see how I feel before my next meal and if I feel I need it I’ll include fatty fish or two ORGANIC eggs. If I don’t feel in need of food from animals I don’t have those. It is better for me not to always eat the way I was brought-up and almost certainly better for the planet if I only eat what I need. I’m not eating much meat at all these days, partly because it is not that easy to get organic meat around here and partly because I just don’t seem to need it like I used to.
  • Last night I had some organic beans late in the evening and slept soundly – I may do the same this evening. I am currently considering organic beans as a source of healthy carbs, although I know purists on HFLC might avoid beans.

[I like chocolate – I don’t eat chocolate everyday, else, for me, it can become an addiction!]

How important is it to get onto HFLC or at least make a decision about how to eliminate the most unhealthy of the carbs? I think an even more important meme to keep in our heads, whether or not we have been said to be bipolar, is,

The most important decision we make each day is what we put in our mouths.

The more I think about this the surer I become that it is so true.

As a last thought on this subject for now: I find that each day… what I eat that day;

    • influences my moods,
    • has a huge impact on how I well I can function,
    • has the biggest impact on my energy levels
    • and usually can provide good and steadier energy levels allowing me to achieve a great deal
    • and be something like the person I want to be…

…the next day.

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As I often do, I am going to finish by saying that just because medical people said I had a mood disorder and I no longer take any prescription medications that does not mean it is easy to stop taking these. Getting the right food undoubtedly helps, just be aware there are so many other lifestyle changes that may also be needed before any changes of prescription medications. Make sure you have the best doctors you can find and talk with them.

#Glyphosate facts: It affects mood. It causes cancer.

Having just written about glyphosate – the debate as to whether this carcinogen (currently sprayed on wheat in the UK)  should be banned across the whole of Europe seems to be heating up.

If you agree we need to eliminate this mood altering carcinogenic chemical from our foods then please sign this petition:

https://actions.sumofus.org/a/netherlands-vote-to-keep-glyphosate-out-of-europe

Being Bipolar – 1 of 3 – Every person is different – #Channel4 #Bipolar

Regarding the UK’s Channel 4 programme, “Being Bipolar” that was shown on 6th March 2015:

I tend to agree with journalist, Yvette Caster, as she shares her personal experiences as a person diagnosed as bipolar. Yvette writes,

The talking cure can help to an extent but, for me at least, the doing cure is far more effective.

As in taking dance classes to cheer me up, singing, going to bed before 11pm, avoiding too much alcohol, not smoking, never taking drugs, taking baths, meditating, swimming, walking and, crucially, working.

This last bit of ‘therapy’ has helped me more than any amount of sitting in a room with a lady with inadvisable style choices attempting to answer personal questions ever could.

Regular, productive activity that gives you a sense of achievement and purpose is crucial to happiness, bipolar or no.

Yvette’s full article is here: London-Metro-Newspaper

A 40 second preview on youtube:

Wellness Recovery Action Planning – WRAP

Wellness Recovery Action Planning – WRAP has been an important part of my recovery. If in USA you probably know of The Copeland Center.

Not so many use WRAP in the UK. If you live here and want to learn about WRAP and how it can help, I will be facilitating a one day WRAP course in Leicester on 10th February 2015. Click on image to find out more.

WRAP Training in Leicester UK

WRAP Training in Leicester UK

Bipolar Disorder Shortens Another Life #bipolardisorder

Bipolar trainer – could this be the world’s most dangerous profession?

Tomorrow I am going to another friend’s funeral. The weather forecast is not great 4’C with light rain. I have shed a few tears today and no doubt will shed a few more tomorrow.

Various reports suggest that being labelled with a mental illness will shorten our lives by 15 to 20 years. In Andrew’s case it would seem to have been a lot more than 20 years. Is speaking out against the mental illness system also a factor in shortening our lives?

Food colours and moods #azodyes #hyperactivity #dangerousfoodcolors

Do colorants added to our food and drink affect our mood?

The simple answer is that a lot of people never notice any effect from additives such as ‘sunset yellow (E110)’ and ‘ponceau 4R (E124)’.

Many people know they are affected. They only need to consume the tiniest amount of any of the colours known as AZO-DYES to have dramatic changes in energy level. When these changes in energy lead to sleepless nights or nightmares or hallucinations the disruption to a person’s life can be huge.

As well as those who know they are affected and those who seem to be unaffected, there are millions of do not realise that these additives are affecting their moods. They put poor sleep down to other things. They may simply accept changes in sleep, energy levels and their ability to concentrate to be ‘random’.

Avoiding these colours is not easy. Sometimes governments help, such as the USA government banning ponceau 4R, whereas in the European Union it is simply labelled as E124 and allowed to be added to a range of foods.

Maybe your own moods are not affected. Maybe you have never lived with a child who has destructive-hyperactivity fueled by these additives? Even so, think about this… The American government believes ‘ponceau 4R E124’ is so dangerous that any food that contains it is seized and destroyed. Are they over-reacting? I think not. The UK Food Standards Agency has been wanting six of these dyes to be banned since a 2007 study indicated these chemicals are bad for us.

Here is a recent update from the Food Standards agency http://www.food.gov.uk/news-updates/news/2012/july/burger-king-coca-cola

Bipolar diagnosis takes years off life #bipolarlife

Warning: Suddenly stopping any psychiatric drug typically results in very unpleasant  feelings, changes in energy levels and the potential for distorted thinking. There is a lot of pre-work to be done to successfully come off drugs.

My belief: Most of the damage done by drugs is through taking too much for too long, rather because any one chemical is especially more dangerous than another. Taking a small amount of an appropriate drug every day may in fact be the best way to get through life. If the drug is making you ill, then you need to get help so you can take less of it.

Suggestion: If your doctor will not discuss your prescription with you, think about ways to find a doctor who knows about emotions, medication, risks and can help you get the dose right.

Some say bipolar diagnosis takes 25 years off life expectancy

I didn’t want to have to say any more about psychiatric drug risks at this time. The trouble is doctors do not seem to be aware of the risks.

There are many reasons why the people diagnosed with bipolar tend to die younger than people with similar emotional distress who avoid diagnosis. From scans of brains damaged by prolonged use of psychiatric drugs we know drugs contribute to early death.

Here is a quote from and a link to a recent article discussing research into early death among those who take psychiatric drugs…

…second-generation antipsychotic drugs can trigger metabolic syndrome, which is associated with a two- to threefold increase in death from cardiovascular disease and a twofold increase in deaths from all causes combined.

from Dr Jane Collingwood’s article: Premature Death Rates Rising in Schizophrenia, Bipolar Patients

Doctors need help in understanding how people can return to good mental health without the need to diagnose. Here is a link for: doctors who would like to know more about emotional people getting by without the need for diagnosis and with little need for medication

Andy Behrman’s one minute on Utube about #abilify

Following on from the words Electroboy (Andy Behrman) wrote about Abilify here is the video he made when he stopped being a spokes person in favour of this antipsychotic.

This does not mean that this drug is any worse than any other. It just means everyone needs to be cautious about drugs and just because it is on prescription does not make it good for you or even necessarily ideal for anyone.

In favour of Abilify…
1) It slows down thinking so if fast thinking is causing you trouble then this will help to correct what can be seen as an anomaly. Doctors who monitor psychosis know that immediately after taking a tablet they are likely to see less psychosis for a while. Although the patient may find the fast thinking comes back if they suddenly stop taking it.
2) It will seem to help patients sleep. Probably any anti-psychotic will do this. It kind of goes with slowed down thinking. Many will say that the sleep quality when taking antipsychotic is not as good, but then if you have been getting into trouble by being awake while others are sleeping there could be an advantage. Maybe also look into visiting a sleep clinic or specialist for advice, as well, as there are a lot of things that help sleep without such powerful and often very unpleasant side-effects.

And the concerns about Abilify…
Elderly people with psychosis related to dementia (for example, an inability to perform daily activities as a result of increased memory loss), treated with antipsychotic medicines including ABILIFY, are at an increased risk of death compared to placebo. ABILIFY is not approved for the treatment of people with dementia-related psychosis (see Boxed WARNING).

Antidepressants may increase suicidal thoughts or behaviors in some children, teenagers, and young adults, especially within the first few months of treatment or when the dose is changed. Depression and other serious mental illnesses are themselves associated with an increase in the risk of suicide. Patients on antidepressants and their families or caregivers should watch for new or worsening depression symptoms, unusual changes in behavior, or thoughts of suicide. Such symptoms should be reported to the patient’s healthcare professional right away, especially if they are severe or occur suddenly. ABILIFY is not approved for use in pediatric patients with depression (see Boxed WARNING).

Contraindication: Patients should not use ABILIFY if they are allergic to aripiprazole or any of the ingredients in ABILIFY. Allergic reactions have ranged from rash, hives and itching to anaphylaxis, which may include difficulty breathing, tightness in the chest, and swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue.
Serious side effects may include:
• An increased risk of stroke and ministroke have been reported in clinical studies of elderly people with dementia-related psychosis
• Very high fever, rigid muscles, shaking, confusion, sweating, or increased heart rate and blood pressure. These may be signs of a condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS), a rare but serious side effect which could be fatal
• Uncontrollable movements of face, tongue, or other parts of body, as these may be signs of a serious condition called tardive dyskinesia (TD). TD may become permanent and the risk of TD may increase with the length of treatment and the overall dose. While TD can develop after taking the medicine at low doses for short periods, this is much less common. There is no known treatment for TD, but it may go away partially or completely if the medicine is stopped
• If you have diabetes, or risk factors for diabetes (for example, obesity, family history of diabetes), or unexpected increases in thirst, urination, or hunger, your blood sugar should be monitored. Increases in blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia), in some cases serious and associated with coma or death, have been reported in patients taking ABILIFY and medicines like it
Lightheadedness or faintness caused by a sudden change in heart rate and blood pressure when rising quickly from a sitting or lying position (orthostatic hypotension) has been reported with ABILIFY.
Decreases in white blood cells (infection fighting cells) have been reported in some patients taking antipsychotic agents, including ABILIFY. Patients with a history of a significant decrease in white blood cell (WBC) count or who have experienced a low WBC count due to drug therapy should have their blood tested and monitored during the first few months of therapy.
ABILIFY and medicines like it can affect your judgment, thinking, or motor skills. You should not drive or operate hazardous machinery until you know how ABILIFY affects you.
Medicines like ABILIFY can impact your body’s ability to reduce body temperature; you should avoid overheating and dehydration.
ABILIFY and medicines like it have been associated with swallowing problems (dysphagia). If you had or have swallowing problems, you should tell your healthcare professional.
Tell your healthcare professional if you have a history of or are at risk for seizures, or are pregnant or intend to become pregnant. Also tell your healthcare professional about all prescription and non-prescription medicines you are taking or plan to take since there are some risks for drug interactions.

While taking ABILIFY, avoid:
• Drinking alcohol
• Breast-feeding an infant

Most common side effects (≥10%) from all clinical trials involving adults or pediatric patients include:
• ADULTS: Nausea, vomiting, constipation, headache, dizziness, an inner sense of restlessness or need to move (akathisia), anxiety, insomnia, and restlessness
• YOUNGER PEOPLE (6 to 17 years): Sleepiness, headache, vomiting, extrapyramidal disorder (for example, uncontrolled movement disorders or muscle disturbances such as restlessness, tremors and muscle stiffness), fatigue, increased appetite, insomnia, nausea, stuffy nose, and weight gain
It is important to contact your healthcare professional if you experience prolonged, abnormal muscle spasms or contractions, which may be signs of a condition called dystonia.
For patients who must limit their sugar intake, ABILIFY Oral Solution contains sugar.
For patients with phenylketonuria or PKU, ABILIFY DISCMELT® (aripiprazole) contains phenylalanine.
If you have any questions about your health or medicines, talk to your healthcare professional.

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If you have concerns, talk to family and especially to those mental health professional who better understand lists of side effects – certainly do not only rely on what you read on the internet.

Why Might Faceless People Provoke Anxiety and So Mess Up Our Mood?

Just over 10 years ago, I was writing metaphorically about masks (see my drawing and link below).

Lennon and McCartney were kind of saying about masks about 50 years ago…

“Lives in a dream
Waits at the window
Wearing a face that she keeps in a jar by the door
Who is it for?”

Writer(s): Lennon John Winston, McCartney Paul James

Today the UK government responded to our petition to,

“Ban the use of face masks in schools”

Here are some words that are absent from the government response, “quality, particles, breathing, breathe, breath, oxygen, carbon-dioxide, lungs, blood, brain, heart, think, thinking, flow, harm, smile, mouth, nose, respiratory, cancer, depression, bacteria, fungi, yeast, mould/mold – none mentioned.

I mention ‘quality’ as a key word as in… consideration of the quality of masks for performance and chemical safety, such as “Are the masks to meet pre-2020 safety guidelines?” Are the masks matching British Safety Standards? Do all the masks have the BSI kitemark* as evidence for safety?

I mention ‘cancer’ as a key word as in… the metabolic theory of cancer that the Nobel Prize was awarded for = lower blood oxygen makes cancer more likely

A word that features strongly in the government response is “evidence” as in,

  1. “latest evidence”
  2. “available evidence”
  3. “best available scientific evidence”
  4. “the available scientific evidence”
  5. “a range of evidence”
  6. “the most recent scientific evidence”

There is no indication of what this evidence is or where it has come from.

Intelligence” is of course important but what is this “intelligence”?

  1. “educational intelligence into account”
  2. “polling data from parents and students and intelligence”
  3. “balanced with intelligence”

They say, “The best available scientific evidence is that, when used correctly, wearing a face covering may reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) droplets in certain circumstances,”

Being employed as a scientist for most of my life, I will state that in science the words ‘may’ and ‘can’ are very different from ‘will’ and ‘does’. This fact means we are being informed that that masks are very unlikely to stop anything smaller than what can be described as a droplet!

So yes, masks reduce spitting! Beyond that it is like using chain link fence hoping to stop insects flying through.

The above is my opinion as someone who worked in microbiology labs with nasty bacteria and nasty moulds, where masks were not worn and most people stayed healthy.

We hear, ‘Stop the Spread’… Consider the warm-air-hand-driers still in use in hospital toilets… If there were viruses worse than ‘flu would those hand-driers not be disabled by now? Pubs and Cafes have these too. What about schools- are there any warm-air-hand-driers in use in schools?

Before I sign off for today, what has this to do with the 3 moods of bipolar/tripolar anxiety, depression and mania?

I was told 24 years ago that my troubles were genetic and from my childhood. I have been on a journey of realising, that however true or untrue that is, the moods we are all experiencing now are more dependent on our interpretation of the data we are receiving from all of our senses. My senses are telling me that the world has changed and this has, and continues to, cause anxiety.

Click on link in picture for 2 of my posts from March 2001:

Note: Achieving a BSI Kitemark for a product (such as a mask) is voluntary. It is a quality mark unique to BSI and is recognized worldwide as a symbol of quality, safety and trust.

Does your mask have a Kitemark?

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