Thursday, May 19, 2022

Three Ways to Cultivate Self Help for Hope

During bipolar depression, building up a sense of hope may seem impossible—at first. Opening up to brighter possibilities is a habit worth investing..


During bipolar depression, building up a sense of hope may seem impossible—at first. Opening up to brighter possibilities is a habit worth investing in.

hope self-help bipolar disorder

Our thoughts and beliefs about hope can both indicate a mood episode and change the course of one.

After all, a pervasive sense of hopelessness is often listed among the primary symptoms of depression, and the grandiosity or sense of invincibility characteristic of mania can, in some respects, be thought of as an overabundance of hope.

Whether you’re grappling with an episode of bipolar depression, working to repair damage after an episode of mania, or struggling with the daily challenges of life with bipolar, hope can be the key to attaining or maintaining mood stability and staying the course on hard days.

True hope is active, not passive, says Anthony Scioli, PhD, coauthor of The Power of Hope. In other words, don’t wait for good things to magically happen, but work to empower yourself. He offers these approaches:

#1 Deal with Distorted Thinking

Therapy sessions and self-help workbooks can help you monitor your mood and thoughts, examine whether your thinking is accurate, let go of self-blame, and learn strategies to reframe how you label things. Learn to see events in shades of gray rather than the black-and-white of “perfect” or “terrible.”

#2 Form Healing Relationships

When you feel doomed, alienated, or powerless, you need friends who can help. Put effort into building and sustaining connections with others.

#3 Follow a Spiritual Practice

This could be praying, attending worship, singing or listening to hymns, walking in nature, or attending a spiritual retreat. Look for readings that are empowering, reassuring, or address the type of hopelessness you feel.

Treatment Plan

Hope is a “central component” in recovery from mental disorders, according to a literature review published in Social Science & Medicine. In looking at previous studies, the reviewers concluded that while no existing interventions specifically aim at increasing hope, many recovery strategies increase hope as a secondary outcome. Among the most powerful:

  • The collaborative model of care, which brings together medical and mental health practitioners as well as the consumer.
  • Treatment from family members and caregivers that empowers clients to formulate and pursue realistic goals of their choosing.
  • Promoting positive factors such as self-esteem, self-efficacy, spirituality and well-being, peer support, and fostering relationships.

Excerpted from “The Key to Lifting Bipolar Depression”

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By: Chris Swingle
Title: 3 Ways to Cultivate Self-Help for Hope
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Published Date: Mon, 29 Nov 2021 16:48:29 +0000


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