A friend had mentioned the recent chat about Kayne West being hypomanic. I checked out the latest footage and it took me back to the time I was in that state myself. It appears that in medical terms, he is currently having a ‘full blown manic episode’, which is more serious than hypomania and can last a lot longer.
Small print – I say in medical terms because I am aware that there are very many alternative views on mania. I am pretty open minded and I know that my whole experience had a very mysterious side to it. Mania is often referred to as the dark side of creativity, many believe it affects people otherwise known as ‘uncommonly gifted or even geniuses’. I’ll take that haha. It is no laughing matter at the time though.
I read that his family feel powerless and are trying to get him to go to hospital and get some proper care. They also spoke out saying:
‘Unless you really understand mental health, you will have no idea what is going on’.
I couldn’t agree more and although I have been a mental health researcher for 6 years, it can take going through mania and being close to someone who is going through it, to REALLY understand. So as I say on my podcast each week, judge less and live and love more. Be kind. I am so thankful that none of my close family or friends judged me, they were there every step of the way. As for anyone that did judge, I get it. How can you understand if you have never been through it? Many people don’t have the desire to try and change their lens, that is why I started the work I do. Chapter one in my first book explains it all and why we should never take mental health personally. That is when we push those that are vulnerable away.
In a manic state, when family try to help, it can feel like the absolute worst thing possible. The mind is buzzing, excited, high energy and being challenged can make a person very upset indeed. I pushed everyone away who challenged me and whatever was going on within me felt very frustrated when this would happen. I remember writing the following quote across my social channels:
‘Sometimes people that ‘love you’ get it wrong because they don’t think about what YOU need, just their own fears.’
I really felt those words when I wrote them. I felt misunderstood and stuck in a cage. I didn’t want to slow down. I was buzzing, so full of life and ideas. I could work so quickly and was contacting SO MANY people to share all of my many, many, exciting plans. I literally felt on top of the world.
After a few weeks of my family watching me go between myself and another person, they decided that the only option was for me to get proper care, medication and rest. Things were getting more intense and it was a scary or exciting time (depending on which lens you were looking at it through).
My family were also worried about my dignity, especially as I was getting on stages, speaking and putting out content. It was just my family and closest friends who picked up on that change it at first. On stage, I remained high energy, honest and had lots of fun. Behind the scenes I was jumping into buying properties, becoming paranoid and was at times losing touch with reality. I was in a bubble and I didn’t want anyone to burst it. Sadly, being manic can make a person push away their closest circle. For me, this changed daily. I would push and pull, with my level of self awareness coming and going.
Mania (or whatever label you wish to give this state of mind) is an intense and very confusing thing for anyone to go through and of course, it is awful for family and friends. Whilst this illness is associated with biopolar, it is important to remember that anyone can have a one off, full blown episode. I was one of those people, which is why it was so hard to diagnose, because I have never been diagnosed with biopolar or struggled with serious mental health issues. Note – we all have mental health and of course our stress levels, mood and anxiety levels will fluctuate. That is called being a human being.
If you think someone close to you may be manic or hypomanic, genius (whatever you want to call it), I would urge you to get advice and help. The symptoms are:
- feeling very happy, elated or overjoyed
- talking very quickly
- feeling full of energy
- feeling self-important
- feeling full of great new ideas and having important plans
- being easily distracted
- being easily irritated or agitated
- being delusional, having hallucinations and disturbed or illogical thinking
- not feeling like sleeping
- not eating
- doing things that often have disastrous consequences – such as spending large sums of money on expensive and sometimes unaffordable items
- making decisions or saying things that are out of character and that others see as being risky or harmful
At the moment, I have gone from buzzing to balanced. I am looking forward to getting the mojo and spirit back and it is without a doubt still in there. I just want to ensure I have a soft and safe landing in place oh and sleep. My body needs sleep and rest and lots of oxytocin daily to keep my excited feet aka mind on the ground. I liked the wording from one of my readers:
‘I know how hard it is to be slow when you are flying. I guess we have to find the branches to land on and restore before soaring off again’.
On that note, I am off to restore. By the time this post goes live, I should be wild swimming in the Scottish isles, evidence to follow :))