How to Get a Grip When You Know You’re Manic

From my Bp Magazine for Bipolar blog:

Julie, MANIC. Circa 1990


Learn to stop bipolar mania from wrecking your life by sticking to a mania prevention plan Mania is very hard to treat in the moment. The treatment window for depression is very high. We tend to be reasonable and are able to see we are sick. Mania, even the mild hypomania some of us have experienced our whole lives can take away our ability to see we are sick in just a few hours. A prevention plan is key. The fist step in managing is accepting that mania is dangerous. I know … what a bummer! Step One: Teach yourself that just because mania feels good, it doesn’t mean it is good. I had to teach myself that the incredible feeling of [ Read More ]

The Manic Urge to Purge from Bp Magazine

I love writing for Bp Magazine. Here is a reprint of an article I wrote for the hard copy of the magazine.


When I’m in an agitated hypomanic state, the desire to get rid of items in my house is strong. But when the mood episode is over regret is bound to follow.



by Julie A. Fast


If you go into my mom’s garage you may see a bag full of dishes and clothes. There may be noodles, rice, and a few cans of food in another bag. You might see a tub filled with jewelry supplies and crochet yarn.

It looks like my mom is getting ready for a garage sale. But she’s not.

Can you guess what is going on here?

It’s my mania. Or hypomania, as I have bipolar II. When I get into an agitated hypomania, the urge [ Read More ]

BIPOLAR DISORDER MANIA 101: Do you know the difference between dysphoric and euphoric mania?

shopping cart mania 50

Julie’s cart during a manic shopping spree. She put ALL of it back when she realized she was manic. ARG!


MANIA 101: Here’s the basic info about bipolar disorder mania.

Let’s start at the beginning. There are two levels of mania: hypomania and full blown mania.

People with bipolar disorder II (two) have hypomania only. People with bipolar disorder I (one) have hyomania and the very dangerous and very life disrupting full blown mania. I have bipolar disorder two, but I’m one of the unfortunates- My type of hypomania is right on the verge of full blown mania. If I ever do move into full blown mania, I will then have a [ Read More ]

Ask Julie Fast: Come on! Can you really tell you are manic by looking in your eyes?

A friend recently wrote me and asked if my mania in the eyes hypothesis was about the size of the pupil. Here is my reply.

Some background: If you are not familiar with my work, I wrote an article based off of personal and professional experience that hypothesizes we can see signs of mania in the eyes.In my opinion, this could revolutionize how we think about bipolar disorder. If mania is clearly seen in the eyes, it means this is a physical illness. If we can recognize mania in the eyes, it means we can override a manic brain that is telling us we are just fine. I’m currently part of a Southern Methodist University study to test my ideas. Here is link to the webpage if you would like to read more. My Psychology Today blog: Three Clues to Recognize Bipolar Mania in the Eyes explains my ideas [ Read More ]

Bipolar Disorder Curious? Listen to the Bipolar Disorder 101 Coaching Call and Change Your World!

Here I am working on my 2009 radio show!

Click the link below to listen to the Bipolar Disorder 101 coaching call where I condense my bipolar disorder knowledge into one hour. We had over 100 people on the original call- now it can reach even more people. You can listen online or download the MP3 to any handheld device. Here’s a quote from one of the listeners:

“Julie, how did you get so much information about bipolar disorder into one call? It’s the first time my son has ever made it through a whole recording about his diagnosis. I could tell that hearing the facts from someone who struggles as much as he does with bipolar really made a difference. Thank you! I was crying and didn’t [ Read More ]

Are You Manic?

I hear stories all summer about people who go off their meds because they feel so GREAT and then the disasters that follow. It’s easy to think – the sun is just so WONDERUFL!!!!!! when the weather gets nice, you’re off school, you have a vacation, the kids are home, etc.

There is no doubt that summer is wonderful if you were depressed in the winter- but this is just a friendly reminder that when things get WONDERFUL!!!!! it’s time to check for mania. Here are some questions to ask yourself – or ask the person you care about.

1. Are you sleeping a lot less than what is considered the norm- but are still filled with energy the next day? The norm is six to eight hours- mania sleep would be [ Read More ]

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