The Importance of Mood Tracking

I’m getting better. That is, I’m getting better at accepting my bipolar diagnosis, managing it, and doing self-care. I’ve come to learn that a big part of this is accomplished by tracking my mood.

Over the past few years, I’ve tracked my mood via a couple of apps on my smartphone. When I first started doing it, I always marked that I was feeling good. This was kind of like replying, “I’m fine” when someone asks how you’re doing and you’re obviously not fine.

Lately, I’ve been more honest with myself when tracking my mood. I also changed the settings on the mood tracker to reflect the realities of Bipolar. My ideal states are “stable” and “content.” Below that is “sad” and “very sad.” At the highest peak is “elevated.” Obviously, there are certain mood states I want to avoid, like elevated, sad, and very sad.

Tracking my mood is a way for me to check in with myself throughout the day. It also reminds me of how quickly my moods change – I can go from stable in the morning to very sad in the afternoon to elevated at night. I suppose this happens to everyone but, for those with bipolar, the shifts can be more sudden and extreme.

Checking in, avoiding the news

Anyways, I just wanted to check in this morning with a quick post. Like most everyone else, we’re on lock down here in the Philly area in the U.S. and I’m trying to make the best of it. It has been tough being separated from loved ones, particularly my girlfriend, but I at least live with a family member and we’re keeping each other company.

Like I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve been avoiding the news for the most part. I check in about once every other day to stay informed. For me, it’s easy to go down the rabbit hole. I have a Journalism degree and I worked as a reporter, so I have a lot of respect for journalists. Still, I think the news media can make things worse sometimes. A lot of the stuff I’ve been reading seems to use words like “biggest” and “worst” a lot.

Hope everyone is staying safe and healthy.

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