Beating Bipolar – The Proof is in the Pudding… As long as there’s no Dairy!

Having hit over 500,000 people globally with my story to date, you may be tuning in expecting some solid answers!?!

That said, there are NO solid answers…

But I do feel for once in my life, like I’m almost beating the Bipolar at its own game, I’m on the path to happiness and although it’s still fraught with anxiety, mostly driven by peoples perception of me, or my own self doubt, I do feel that there’s a route through the tree’s and I’m beginning to see the variation in the different types of wood…

Does this mean I’ve got the cure, no, but it does mean that I’m building the mechanics.

If you’re new to my, sometimes seemingly ranty, blogs, then you should note that I was diagnosed with a bipolar disorder around 12 years ago and I tried medication for about 30 days, at which point, not able to string a sentence together by 3pm each day, I threw them in the bin, off the back of the consideration, that if I was going to deal with a ‘mental’ issue, then I should do it mentally and evolve my mind into functioning without any sort of suppressant…

12+ years and copious drugs and drinks binges later, I’m t-total on the drug front and am able to enjoy a beer for pleasure and not to the point where I’m debilitated by it…

So, what am I doing differently now, why do I feel such a dramatic shift at this point…?

  1. I quit doing the work that didn’t give me any enjoyment, I was running a company that had small profits doing everything for everyone and fundamentally that made me a busy fool, helping everyone but myself, while I drove my mental state into a hole, enveloped in the facade of a businessman on a roll…
  2. I stopped trying to help everyone and started initially just trying to help myself for a change. This doesn’t mean I simply shat on everyone who I thought might need help, I just started to be more realistic with my time and helped people passively with support and guidance, while I cut back on the 1-2-1 meetings where people just bleed you for business insights, that aid them financially and debilitate your time.
  3. I found what I loved to do and what I was good at… I realised that amidst the chaos of the companies that I’d created, there was an element that made me happy, the creative element surrounding clothing design and the clever thinking that meant less customers, better customer management, more money, meaning more sustainable and more time to just breathe… I went all Jerry Maguire!
  4. I started to look at the right opportunities… I found them and the chance to shape the future of a few British Brand’s and beyond…
  5. I decided that if you’re late, you’re late and that we don’t have to trample an old woman or a small child in London, just to get to a meeting (not that I ever would have Mum), we don’t have to arrive sweating… nothing in life is as important as the life that surrounds us and ebbs through us and with calm, comes respect and with respect, comes positive energy… I was 45 minutes late for a meeting yesterday, the traffic was bad, my partner was driving, my new son was in the back, I was changing nappies; I hadn’t eaten because of a string of meeting delays throughout the day and I made the mistake of having a Redbull and a Crunchie 10 minutes before hand, as I fought to get diesel off my hands; so, when I got in I said too much, I was a bit of an arse, I almost sunk the opportunity before it began and was thrown off kilter because the guy thought I had no integrity and I sat there and thought wait!?! This is not me… I’m the guy fighting the stigma of mental health, who’s not quite made it yet (in the traditional sense = £), in a posh suit with a cravat, trying to navigate through the last 3 wet wipes and his final nappy, with his son’s little bottom way too close to the double breasted cream waistcoat, as his fiance bombs around town like Colin McRae (pre-helicopter) to get us there on time and I sat back to breathe… And it was like being back at the start of the journey, when all I wanted to be was happy…

Everything we put on ourselves in life, is because of the cause and effect that we’ve seen on the way. We’re over zealous, we’re foolhardy, we stop thinking about others outside ourselves…

I constantly tell people we’re working to give ourselves back time, but what we never stop to realise, is that we are the keepers of our own time; if you didn’t finish your work, if you’re late to a meeting, if the guy cut in front on the tube… what happens?

You’re works not finished… But you’re not dead… You’re late to a meeting anyway, so why knock that child in front of you out of the way? You’re already late, be a human… The guy cut you up and jumped on the tube first, f**k it, the tube doors don’t close until we’re all on anyway, who cares, you’re still at the tube door…

Give yourself back the time, watch the rush as you know that you’re not in it… Watch the chefs through the window on the cobbled high street, on your way to work, taking in their fish in the morning, or doing their prep, as others rush past you, ignorant; look up, stand on walls, see the architecture and the colour, pull your umbrella to one side and just feel the rain… View everything from a different perspective and your time will be your own again…

And even if your boss spits negativity in your face as you arrive, you’ll know then, as I do, that you can close your eyes and bring those moments back… Back when you need them, back when you knuckle down…

If all you recall amongst the rumble this weekend is this; remember it’s ‘your’ time, ‘you’ are the keeper, ‘you’ are the leader, you are not a slave to it, you are not bound by it, you are free within it, to shape it and to shift it to your whim, to float above it and to breathe…

And do you know what, when you’re back in the room, the meeting just might turn out ok…

Bipolar Awesome Image

 

Bipolar Baby Days – Finally! The Secret to Operating with NO SLEEP!!

Well I’m so sorry to disappoint you but there is no secret to operating without sleep it’s bloody awful!!

I have to say though, since my last blog post The Vegan Within… Happy to Save The Cows, but I’m NOT Wearing Tie Dye… I feel on cloud 9 for the most part… (If we set aside the vanity of my industry and the drive for money above humanity…)

But nothing negative is going in this blog today!! You can’t stop this train!!

Having gone to bed exhausted after two days running around London off the back of limited sleep, I woke multiple times to consistent but sporadic crying, until, at around 3am, my partner Anna said that she’d take baby downstairs so I could sleep…

However, as soon as she went down my body went into reset and I was done! I have this issue that if I shut down even for an hour or so and something wakes me up, then with a relatively fast paced mind, it’s often almost impossible to get back to sleep.

So I thought, sod it, I’ve just got the consultancy contract of a lifetime, lets go and focus on that to make Friday a breeze, so I stuck on the old casuals after 2 days dressed like a posh lad, as there’s no need to wear tweed in my own home; and I hit the desk…

That said, my desk was an absolute bomb site over weeks and weeks of not really getting round to anything, so I took everything off, threw away everything that created the clutter and got rid of anything I thought was not worth looking at again in the context of my current hotel & retail projects, I then set about cleaning the desk down thoroughly, before spilling my morning coffee over everything on the desk and in part the floor… and then cleaning everything again, many elements on a case by case basis this time; not conducive to getting a head start on my workload as planned!

However, when you kick off at 3am, it appears irrelevant if you p*ss coffee everywhere, because it’s still oppressively early and operating as fast as I do (especially now I’m t-total and 50% vegan, on a base level) you’re still going to make a serious dent in whatever you set about achieving.

I didn’t get much work done so far to be honest, partly because my living room is now immaculately clean and partly because I sent a lengthy email trying to support a friend get work after being sh*t on for years, to the point I have had enough and being the well connected chap that I am I just want to get it sorted so the poor guy can breathe!

If you’re an employer and you’re reading this, do me a favour… don’t prejudice someone based on age, if they’ve got 10 years left in them and more contacts than god then you’re still going to keep them longer than one of these millennial x-factor generational tossers who only want you as a stepping stone to the next role they’ll doss about in before they shift again, as I’m now seeing on a daily basis.

Where the hell is the humanity or more importantly the general logic now days…?!

I’m not sure there’s much more to say in this short blog today, as I need a few bananas to keep a bit of mojo and if I start doing some work now, as it’s still only 6.22am, I can still do more than one of these youngsters in before the sun comes up…

So I leave you with this…

If your sat at your desk today and you take just 3 minutes out for me, to just think about your life, just 3 minutes; and as most people are only 40-60% work productive anyway I’m sure you can do that for me…

I want you to really think about yourself, who are you, what is your purpose, what do you want, are you happy? Don’t you just want to be happy?

Lets imagine I pay your bills for 3 months and you get to decide what your next step is…

If the only focus was to get up and be happy, are you currently where you were born to be?

If the answer is YES, if the answer is that you’re happy then go out there and I hope you absolutely smash your Friday and have a good time this weekend!

However, if the answer is NO… lets imagine everyone’s too self absorbed to care about you, or what you SHOULD be doing with your life (shouldn’t have to imagine too hard, just stand in central London at rush hour for 2 minutes to create that impression, that usually works for me… I’ll start again…

If the answer is NO, you’re not happy, or you’re not where you were born to be, or dreamed you would be at this stage in your life, then what can you do to change that… And where do you want to be in a year if you’re not mown down by a double-decker bus, or a white van man tomorrow?

I can now, finally, after 15 years of crap and anxiety; to the point of attempted suicide on multiple occasions, trying to fit into societal standards, tell you that if you take that 3 minutes or give yourself the luxury of more and focus on what YOU WANT for a change, rather than whether your boss has a bit more money and you have a bit less self esteem, then I promise you, I cross my heart… you’ll wake up tomorrow and next week will be a whole different ball game!!!

And to all the employers who are thinking it may be a good idea to burn my house down at this point, just remember, you had hopes one, so either let them go, with a pat on the back, or bloody well change your mentality and inspire them!!!

(***Disclaimer – Lets remember I woke up at 3am if we’re feeling a bit anal about any spelling mistakes this morning…)

Have an amazing Friday, to the 500,000+ people I’ve managed to reach so far, thank you for being that change in me, in a couple of months if I’m still feeling like this, then I may have just found a cure of manic depression and bipolar disorder… and there’s not a hint of lithium in my morning banana.

Have a listen of this on your way to work and lets doff the cap to Joe Esposito January 1938-November 2016

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The Vegan Within… Happy to Save The Cows, but I’m NOT Wearing Tie Dye…

So; I recently started trying to make myself more healthy, thus leading to me becoming more motivated and changing my ‘devil may care’ attitude to my body… Around a year ago I was told I’ve most likely had an eating disorder for a long time, because I’d be living off a combination of coffee, sugar, tobacco and beyond without actually consuming any food, sometimes until the evening around 7 or 8pm… NOT healthy!!

Meanwhile going around sharing my mental health story with over half a million people and trying to inspire others to change, but living a lie on the inside, my mental strength pushing me through the trauma I was putting my body through.

Now, I haven’t turned full hippy, because as Robert Downey Jr. would say, if you’re a fan of Tropic Thunder… “You don’t go full hippy!” but I’m certainly looking at how I can live a healthier lifestyle.

And, as I love adrenaline sports, motorbikes, skiing, climbing, martial arts and generally anything that requires a different type of skill level to the average human if you’re going to avoid potential for death, my thinking is, surely with a healthier approach to body dynamic, I can do more of the aforementioned ‘crazy’ stuff and elevate not only the pleasure in doing so, but the capacity for it as well…

My fiance is very into health and fitness and very well educated as a fitness instructor, dancer etc. so through her research and passively educating me in elements of veganism, when I’d listen, I came to learn that when an animal, like a cow or pig is slaughtered, they release hormones due to anxiety, these anxiety hormones are then trapped in our food as it’s processed and it travels into our bodies…

Now, this to me is a more tangible argument, than eating fruit that’s fallen from a tree because it died of natural causes (Notting Hill reference)! So I thought, hey, I’m not so married to the almighty steak that I can’t have a go at stopping and genuinely see whether it works for me.

Sausages and bacon I thought would be much harder, because I’m a connoisseur, but I’ve probably had one sausage and egg muffin from Pret in that period and I leveled it our with a vegetarian muffin so I covered my bases there.

And to my surprise and delight I’m feeling very very well indeed. I’m not having any aches or pains, I’m not tired all the time, sometimes annoying if you’re brains on a rain-man run; but, all in all, it’s really stabilised my mood and my relationship with food.

I’m eating regularly, I can count the amount of fast food I’ve had during this period using only 1 finger and I feel buoy’d by my progression.

I even had rice and veg for breakfast this morning, which may sound odd, but considering I’m a lifetime martial artist and Japan has the longest life expectancy in the world, it’s not as mad as you might think… Ironically they have the highest suicide rate in the world too, but that’s one for another blog…

My focus now is to improve on the feeble form that I’ve developed since letting myself slip and I will be religiously adhering to this little beauty of a workout Monday to Friday twice a day:

Indoor Cardio Workout

So… my challenge is still evolving and I’m not the end result I’m looking to achieve yet, but I’m there’s no medication, no drugs, no nicotine, barely any beer (lets not go mad) and a totally new respect for food and how I keep my legs working…

Prior to all this I was always going to ‘start tomorrow’, or on the 1st of next month, or in January and all that bullsh*t we tell ourselves so we never have to lift a finger… but in feeling sick at the man I’d become I don’t want to lie to myself any more…

I can handle failure, I can handle a leaner physique than Arny might adhere to, but I can’t handle not trying, not pushing myself… Before today if I failed it was down to my own laziness, my own ambiguity and frankly the times ticking… My son is here and it’s only a matter of time before he see’s who I’ve become and it’s not going to be that guy.

My life has a future now, but it’s driven by me, no more excuses and no more wasting it!

“Beautiful things don’t ask for attention. To see the world, things dangerous to come to, to see behind walls, to draw closer, to find each other, and to feel. That is the purpose of life.”

And if we save a bunch of cows along the way then so much the better!

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