Hope and Resolutions – New Year, Same Bipolar

So here it is, 2011. Yes, a new year. People are full of hope, resolutions, and motivation for change.

It should come as no surprise that I, the bipolar, the depressive, the philosopher, the writer, am not.

Resolutions & Hope for the New Year

Most people, mostly wrong people, think that they can seize this moment to change their life. People think that this arbitrary moment of existence somehow means that they can make their lives better.

Silly, sill them.

Resolutions & Disappointment for the New Year

The new year really means silly promises that people don’t keep and then are disappointed about by February 1st, if they’re lucky enough to last that long. Anyone still losing weight, going to the gym, reading more, quitting smoking, reducing debt or volunteering like they promised last year?

Resolutions & Hope: New Year, Same Bipolar

So my problem, the thing that really sticks in my craw, is this: if your average person can’t be expected to keep a New Year’s resolution, what chance does a crazy person have?

I’d say, very little.

And it’s not so much that I don’t understand the odds against me or bipolars in general, because I do, but I think in the case of a person with bipolar or a person with depression, the whole idea of a New Year’s resolution is really just an invitation to disaster.

New Year's Resolutions and BipolarBipolar and New Year’s Resolutions Lead to Depression

As I’ve mentioned, people generally feel bad when they fail at their New Year’s resolution. I don’t really think they should as it was an unreasonable thing in the first place, but they do. And I know myself, I know my bipolar, I know my depression and I know that my mental illness will take the failure of a resolution, which I’m destined to face, and make it seem like the end of the world, the end of my worthiness, the end of my life.

Because depression looks for any excuse to make me feel bad about myself. Depression looks for an excuse to cause pain. And depression doesn’t need a reason at all; so give it one, and just see how aggressive it can be.

Don’t Let the New Year Goad You Into Creating a Depression

So the moral of my little writing is this: don’t create an opportunity for depression to beat you up. Give yourself a break, give yourself a hug and don’t bother with silly promises that are flights of fancy anyway.

Because as I see it, just fighting my bipolar is like quitting smoking every day. And that’s more than enough of a resolution for me.

(If you want to see some New Year’s resolutions I think are decent for a person with a mental illness, check out my writing: New Year’s Resolution for the Bipolar at HealthyPlace.)


About Natasha Tracy

Natasha Tracy is an award-winning writer, speaker and consultant from the Pacific Northwest. She has been living with bipolar disorder for 18 years and has written more than 1000 articles on the subject.

Natasha’s New Book

Find more of Natasha’s work in her new book: Lost Marbles: Insights into My Life with Depression & Bipolar. Media inquiries can be emailed here.


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