Mania: Preventing Manic Thinking

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Just like depressed thinking can cause your thoughts to spiral down overly positive thinking can cause you to get higher and gear you toward mania.  When you are in a high mood manic thinking might elevate upwards so it’s important to start recognizing what kind of thinking you are having at any time.  It takes practice but is a valuable skill to have.  It is good to think about what evidence you have about your thinking.  It’s worth journaling or writing lists to make it easier to literally see what you are thinking.

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Pinning down the kind of thoughts you have when you are euphoric can really be good to curb your thinking yourself. Otherwise you might lead yourself into a waste of time or setting an unrealistic goal.  Writing down the goals or ideas you are having make a great illustration of how your thoughts are going.  This can be true of negative thoughts too.  However seeing that you are inflating your road to a successful goal can help you reassess. It will be easier to set a more realistic path and achieve more what you originally intended.  It’s important to think about what facts or details you might have over looked.  It’s very easy when hypomanic to over shoot and contract processes skipping steps and focusing instead on glorious results.

Sometimes because thinking is contracted due to excitement images of steps to take can be foggy, blurry, or even disappear.  Writing your thoughts out or listing steps can make obvious to you or someone close to you. Perhaps you might share your record with that close person seeing there are more needs to be included clarifying the path to the end or desired result.  That dose of realism can help to completely even out any bumpy thinking and create a more focused and detailed picture.  The phrases pulling you down or bursting your bubble may sound rough but in reality the rise in thinking is artificial to begin with. You needed to start at more realistic level initially.

By writing down your ideas and discovering you may not have been so accurate it gives you the chance to make a more balanced approach to that step or result. That next step of finding a more balanced point to replace the unhelpful part can turn around what could’ve been an unproductive situation.  There are questions you can go through to analyze just how helpful your initial thoughts are after writing them down. You can consider what other ways there are of viewing the situation.  The good news is that your extra energy will make it a little easier to access the creativity useful for thinking around that first thought.  Using the “who, what, where, why, when and how” questions are a great place to start.

Because the point is to catch this thinking early the best thing is to practice this process from as early on as possible before any elevated thinking.  Feeling high is not the best time to receive suggestions or try to focus or expect a great reception of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.  Often with this euphoric or grandiose thinking comes an over confident attitude one that makes you resistant to counsel or critical thinking.  Starting this writing process early will open up the chances of catching the beginning follies that often accompany mania and manic thinking.  It is important to see the patterns that come with the question, “What would I be thinking if I weren’t high?”

Once you have developed a balanced thought it is a great to write it on a card and keep it with you referring to it when you think on it.  It’s kind of like minute meditations where you rerun the balanced ideas because it’s so easy to forget them when euphoric. While it sounds silly you can use this strategy to help keep you from going full blown manic.  It is a form of staying anchored like a stringed balloon being tied to something.  Having asked what a balanced view of your planned situation was it is the perfect opportunity to put into action the more moderate thinking you and others are more accustomed to when you are even-keeled and rational.

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