It is a well-known fact that individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorder are often very creative. Many of us who have bipolar disorder are overloaded with creativity during manic and hypomanic episodes. Usually, in the beginning of these episodes, we tend to sleep less and be more productive and happy. There are many different forms of art including music, writing, artwork (drawing or painting), photography, videography, acting, and many more. Personally, I tend to write more and organize my house when I’m manic or hypomanic. I don’t see anything wrong with embracing your creativity during these episodes; however, it’s still important to follow-up with your doctors and attempt to balance out your life. There is a thin line between being creative and having psychotic episodes; it’s happened to me several times.
I recently received a gift from my mom, who knows how neat and organized I like everything to be. She gave me an adult drawing book and some colored pencils. What a great surprise! One of the coloring books she got me is all postcards; you color in on one side and write your message and address on the other side. I have been using it as an outlet for my frustration and my energy. Today, I finished my first piece of artwork. I had to throw my first one away because I wasn’t happy with the way it turned out. Now, I can go back and forth between writing and drawing. They are both wonderful therapeutic tools for me to use.
You don’t have to be manic or hypomanic to be creative, although it is more common during those episodes. You don’t even have to be bipolar. All I’m saying is that many artists are predisposed to mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder; and many individuals diagnosed as bipolar are predisposed to being some type of artist. There are many famous and successful artists that lived years ago, before people believed in mental illnesses. Some of these famous artists include Leonardo da Vinci had bipolar and dyslexia, Michelangelo had OCD, Isaac Newton had bipolar disorder, Beethoven had bipolar disorder, and so did Vincent van Gogh. There are and have been so many world-wide famous artists that struggled with bipolar disorder and other mental illnesses. I am inspired by these famous artists that struggled mentally but were very successful in their artwork. We don’t always have to look at our bipolar disorder as a deficit; sometimes there are good things that come out of the disorder, as long as we stay on top of everything and don’t let our episodes get too out of control.