My Fourth Week of my Life Coaching Journey

Identities are egoic and they are a major part of living in the past and future – Eckhart Tolle

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye’s work and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by Zac Durant on Unsplash

If you are looking for your own journey into lifestyle coaching that envokes change in your life, if you are stuck under a mental illness diagnosis and want relief from someone who has experience in the core of what causes suicide, please reach out to Kim Johnson, @ Groundsforclarity@gmail.com. You can find her at www.groundsforclarity.com

Week Four, How Letting go of Identities is Golden

I have been working hard at letting go of identities, or at least that is the plan. Identities throughout my life have been controlled by individual identities, especially those that have to do with my mental illness. The Bipolar Writer came from an identity as a writer who happens to be Bipolar, but that does not define who this person is writing this blog post. It is just me writing. Stringing together words, so they work, and so you can read them. My brand is still The Bipolar Writer, but letting go of that as an identity was tough, but it was just the beginning. When I began to let go of the identities, the metaphorical pencil was not easy.

Photo by Miles Burke on Unsplash

 I was struggling with the identifiable labels in my life. The ego wants us, me, and you to not let go of the identities that define us (letting go of the pencil may seem easy, but the ego wants you to think of a million ways to let go.) Seeking problems when there is no problem is what the ego seeks out, and we feed it. I am learning to let these things go. It feels useful to predict that you are going to feel bad, right? You want to feel bad because at least you know what your feeling. Its a sense of control that not having an identity means you are starving the ego, and it does not like it at all. Let all those identities define you, and I can tell you from experience the freeing of dropping those identities are amazing. Living in The Now, that is the goal because you are already there.

Intellectualize. What an unusual and useless word. I do that so much in this life, intellectualize. I am learning to make adjustments to stay away from the past and future and stay in the now. It is a fantastic place to be. Something my life coach said to me stuck with my week: Appreciating that what us going on in my life for me, but it doesn’t matter because there is an equal opposite reaction. You can’t have the good without the bad. We were talking about the grieving process that I have been going through really only since July. The feelings will be up and down. It comes with the territory. Being in the now allows for a more steady baseline. 

It feels right to write. Projects for my business will come. When I let go of trying to grow my business, I am learning it just continues to grow–naturally now. When I overthink my business, when I lose a client, the default is to doubt things. I have to label it good or bad, and I can tell you its exhausting. The clients that want to work with me will be there. They are already coming into my life without the hard sell. Sure I will grow my client list but organically. People reach out to me daily from this blog. Who knows. Someone may see that I am a ghostwriting memoirist with a focus on creative nonfiction and reach out. I have already gotten clients since I stopped putting a label of good or bad on future clients’ potential. 

It may sound cliche, but it is excellent to put positive vibes out in the world. When I send out positive vibes, things really come to you. I know I have experienced it so much lately. When you pursue the “wants” in life, you will always “need” more, and your cup will never be filled. It is not worth it, I am telling you, my friends.

One of the most significant doubts in my life is me. I always feel great when I am working on my craft. The “me” is me being my biggest doubter and critic. Every project, I doubt about my writing, and it is silly because it is wrong. The identity “The Bipolar Writer” is the one that is doubting. At some point in my life, I became The Bipolar Writer. It became something I identified that made me think I was special. I’m not extraordinary at writing; it is just what I do, feeding the ego. I let The Bipolar Writer identity go along with some I never expected. Why do we hold on to labels and identities? Why does it have to be “I am a writer” instead of writing how I write and say screw the label. The true presence is creativity. I let go of the identity of the writer. I just write.

These are some of the other “identities” that I have let go of is Mental health advocate. Again that is not saying that blogging and my book will not help people. I got into this to share my experiences with the world. Again, why does a label have to attach to what I am doing for the community? It is excellent to say “let it go,” but you have to be the present now and put action behind letting go. If I am writing about my experiences as someone dealing with Bipolar living, then that is what I am in the now. I can move from moment to moment. Pivoting to what will make me happy now. So much expectation comes from being Bipolar, but why does it have to be so? They are an unnecessary part of my life. There is no conflict, and there is no problem. 

My Week Leading to Week Five of Life Coaching

I went into the week, shedding some of the identities that needed to be gone, but I had work to do. One of the amazing ones that I let go of is gamer. It has been a significant identity that I had to be because it “helped me with my anxiety and depression.” I let go, and at the same time, sold my last remaining gaming system. Yes, it was for personal gain, but at the same time, it was letting go. Things happen. I had a TV in my room that I never use, and my cable company charges me for a cable box I never use. So I gave away my TV and returned to the box. It matters how you do things in my life. I took into my week from Kim that we are all the same, and nothing should be taken too seriously. Peace is what I wanted this week, and perhaps I got that, but more I stayed in the now. Anything can happen.

The last thing Kim asked me to do something that atypical. I did that, I said hello to random people while I was out, social distancing, and wearing a mask.

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by Christopher Sardegna on Unsplash

Week Three of Life Coaching

“I don’t know.” Perhaps one of the most underused answer that has so much meaning.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by John Baker on Unsplash

If you are looking for your own journey into lifestyle coaching that envokes change in your life, if you are stuck under a mental illness diagnosis and want relief from someone who has experience in the core of what causes suicide, please reach out to Kim Johnson, @ Groundsforclarity@gmail.com. You can find her at www.groundsforclarity.com

You are here, and I would argue that you are here in the present. That’s one of the greatest things that I have learned from my Life Coach, Kim Johnson.

My Life Coaching Session

I have been three weeks in, and I know making the decision to go down this road was the right choice. I always say I believe in the process, and it has not diminished, and I began my session with a moral quandary. I was in the right place with my business. I picked up one project that I am committed to, and it will go great because I know the client well. I am a sucker for a good story, and I tend to not be objective when a story idea speaks to me. That happened with the second project that I had picked up during the week.

I tend to allow my past experiences to become a part of my present moments. I have been burned in the past. What happened was a client wanted to write a book with a 50/50 split in the end. One of the things in the contract was worrying me, and it was hard for me to commit to the project. I needed help from Kim because I was in a lot of ways making assumptions, generalizations, and interpretations in what was going on. I don’t know this person well enough to do a project on spec. As a general rule, I don’t work on spec, and it wasn’t about the money.

Photo by BENCE BOROS on Unsplash

I have trust issues stemming from my past and what does that stem from–fear. I was coming from a place of fear about the situation. I was worried about letting go of a project that gave me grief, and if it was all worth it. Letting go makes sense. Then I said, “I honestly don’t know.” Wow, that was freeing. It is a great place to be. I don’t have to know the answer. I like to control as a human being. Let go of the thoughts that ego is allowing to control me is so different from what I have been most of my life. 

What separates Kim from other life coaches, in my personal opinion, is that she gives it to me straight, no bull, and she told me the truth that I needed to hear, I didn’t have to keep digging down to roots for weeks. It was up to me, I have the choice, and I make the decisions (really we don’t truly make the decision.) My ego was not allowing me charity, but Kim came up with something else. If I didn’t deal with it, the situation would keep coming up if I can’t commit. If it was no, then accept and move on.

When you change the perception of the situation, fear is not an issue. No more hard and fast rules with my life, and my past coming up is something that I can work through the situation’s triggers. I have to lean into the moment because it will always come up.

The situation that I faced happened to me before, but I didn’t deal with it at all. That level of awareness and clarity was helpful. I had to learn that not talking about my issues and not dealing was not making me happy. I am great at not dealing with my problems. I was not grieving for my mom’s loss for close to eight months before reading Shelby Forsythia. I was judging myself for judging myself. Yes, that was who I was for so long

One of my session’s best parts is when Kim posed this question after telling me to stop and pause for a moment. What would a creature, water, or an inanimate object do if some force of nature destroyed it? Does it feel like crap forever? These things are not about their self-centered feelings like us humans. I can find a way to pull myself back into the present and not engage the thoughts. Just be, and slow down. Find a way to laugh at myself has been the hardest thing. 

My life is going in the right direction. School is just two more semesters, my business is starting to gain momentum, and my writing is excellent. My ego might get in the way, but I am in a better place. That is great! Life coaching is life-changing, and I know there is room to grow.

My Week

I decided that I am going to do more and plan less. I want a tattoo, so I am getting one (it will be a Harley Quinn one). I wanted to visit a friend, and so I dedicated a week to take a train and spend a week in Sacramento. Prices were cheap, and I just did it. I reached out to the woman that worked on formatting my memoir, and she gave me a price to format my novella. I am finally moving forward to get it published. I am moving forward in my life and doing more thinking and planning less. There is no more overthinking every second. I just do. It’s not perfect but subtle changes. I am also going to stop tripping about life.

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Photo by Johnson Wang on Unsplash

The Infinity Warriors of Mental Health Website

The discord channel, The Infinity Warriors of Mental Health, now has its own website! I want a special thanks to Aby and Em to taking the step for the discord website to become a reality. Those who don’t know I am the owner of The Infinity Warriors of Mental Health Discord channel, and it grows every day. Please consider joining us and frienfing the blog so we can share our journey together.

For those in the mental illness community that wants to have a safe place to share your daily struggles, you can join anonymously and use it as a resource as the members of the group are just like you. Our members are living and working through their issues with mental illness. We foster a place or serenity and peace and a place to belong. It is just a basic WordPress blog right now, but as we go on and the group grows, we will become a force in the world with a valid domain name. 

Want to join? Go to www.discord.com

  • Sign up for a discord account.
  • Then add one of the Discord Moderators – JamesEdgarSkye#4190 or SilverLinings#0367 or Aby#9662
  • Send a message that you are from WordPress, introduce yourself we don’t know you, and you will be added to the group!
  • If you have any questions or need help simply reach out
  • Or email me @ jamesedgarskye22@gmail.com

Here is the introduction to our discord:

Welcome to the first of its kind Discord community in which our goal is to provide a safe, anonymous, immersive, and experiential learning experience into mental health discussion. 

We will provide a safe, anonymous, immersive and experiential learning experience into mental health discussion by sharing our personal stories. Here, we value transparency, your story, your authenticity…. in a place where we accept everyone’s point of view.

And what that means is, we may not always agree with one another and we believe within our community safely challenging one another’s perspectives is the key to collaborative discussion. 

We strongly desire for everyone to speak from the lens with which they view life including but not limited to: 

  • Politics
  • Religion/ Deity
  • Sexual orientation
  • Socioeconomic status
  • Ethnicity
  • Racial make-up
  • Education
  • Culture
  • Physical/ Mental/ Social/ Emotional/ Environmental/ Spiritual factors
  • Lifestyle
  • Age (Group is reserved for 18 years and up)
  • Mother tongue
  • Professional/ Role in society
  • Taste of music
  • Sense of humour
  • Criminal record
  • Sports affiliation
  • Military background

All inclusive in a respectful way is what we strive to achieve at this Discord channel.

Discord Moderators can be personally messaged if you wish to voice a concern. However, we strongly encourage open discussion during “stuck” times in conversation in order to foster mutual respect. 
The right to delete comments, ban individuals and block chat members is reserved to Discord Moderators as follows: JamesEdgarSkye#4190 or SilverLinings#0367 or Aby#9662

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Starting My Own Ghostwriting Business

The Bipolar Writer is going legit, at least that is the plan for the future. I am looking for those who are ready to write their story but have no idea where to start. The Bipolar Writer Ghostwriting Services is the place for you, and my focus is on writing your memoir. I do offer other writing services.

I offer a comprehensive memoir ghostwriting package, but I will work with you. I have been writing the memoirs of others for five years and wrote my own, and now I know the next step is starting my business. I have been through it all, and I have the knowhow to take you from concept to completion. If you are interested, please reach out through my business email @ jameseskye22@gmail.com. Let’s talk about the future of your memoir.

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

My First Week of Life Coaching

Take a good look, this is James Edgar Skye before he decided to make a life changing investment into his future and took on a life coach. I wanted to post this picture here because it is important to who I was when starting this journey. We all have to begin somewhere, and this is where I will be a different person by the end of my four month eighteen week long journey.

Last month, I took a chance and decided to seek life coaching with Kim Johnson, founder of Grounds for Clarity. I began last week with my first session. The decision was the right one at the right time in my life. I have been down a spiraling path that was not who I was in 2019, and to be honest, most people are not on the same path in 2020. I have been struggling to find myself within the confines of identities and projects that have made it easier to not deal with the glaring issues in my life. Starting a business from the ground up, even with my experiences, has been tough on me. I have not given myself time to grieve my mom’s loss, and I am dealing with a lot of self-doubts in my professional writing life.

I went into my first week with an open mind and heart. I knew I wanted real change, and to really get the most out of the four-month-long journey that I was about to embark on, I had to be willing to change. Kim does not promise results because change is ultimately up to me. What she does offer is her presence in your journey. That is very empowering.

Photo by Allie on Unsplash

We live in a world where we want instant results, and I am not different in wanting things to happen fast or to look into the future to see if things will get better. I sometimes live in the past because it is secure there, but does it really get you or me anywhere? The answer is no. It was important this first week to understand that trusting the process, that I can’t figure out all my problems in one week, was vital for me to understand myself. At the best of times, I can be impatient with my life. I wanted above all else this first week to trust the life coaching process because four months can be life-changing.

I knew that my biggest obstacles were that my motivations were intrinsically based, that I struggled with the weight of self-doubt about my professional writing future and that I was not grieving. I was living in two places, almost exclusively in the past and the future. It was becoming my narrative, and I didn’t even know that it was happening. I had to learn that living in the present and letting go of things I can’t control would be challenging. I was ready for the challenge. 

My first week was encouraging. I had so many questions, and my life does not happen in a vacuum. The module homework Kim gave me helped me shape my first week. I realized my engagement styles and how I kept staying in my current engagement style, which would look like me continuing to go down a very negative path, which allowed my doubts to control me. My path will be letting fo of the money side of my writing control me. When things are not going my way, my default is to overthink and overanalyze the event in real-time. It is counterproductive in living in the moment, that change is inventible, and letting go is so much easier. I hold on to things because I have this need for control, especially with my past.

I want to end this post with something that stuck with me throughout the last week since beginning this journey. Something that Kim challenged me on. Being mindful throughout my day and being present, allowing me to catch my thoughts. I am not obligated to engage in all the things around me. I learned that I had to understand that if I wanted to be always looking for the next big thing or project that would get me to the next goal, it would continue to affect me negatively. I have become so goal-oriented to the extreme. I know that I need goals in my life, but I can’t always live looking at the future but forget the present me. That is not always easy to do. I need to let go of the past. Conscious awareness is so important. I am my own person inside and out.

If you are looking for your own journey into lifestyle coaching that envokes change in your life, if you are stuck under a mental illness diagnosis and want relief from someone who has experience in the core of what causes suicide, please reach out to Kim Johnson, @ Groundsforclarity@gmail.com. You can find her at www.groundsforclarity.com

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by Austin Chan on Unsplash

Let us Connect on Zoom

Photo by Chris Montgomery on Unsplash

Something came to mind as I began to write this blog post. Practice makes perfect. That for those who don’t know is a song from Cute is What We Aim For, a blast to my more emo days. It came up as I began making video content, something I am not totally comfortable with yet, but I am working on the goal!

I have realized that I have really gone inside myself to hide since my loss—the loss of my mother. I was always antisocial and an introvert, but I was still going out and doing things. With my loss and COVID-19, I have disconnected from most of the world. I don’t even write here as often as I want because there has been a real feeling of disconnect. As I am learning by giving myself permission to grieve (Shelby Forsythia), this has been one of my new identities that were once something I clung to–not connecting to the world. Even if it is just with writing.

I am relearning everything. How to live with loss and not hide from it as I have been for close to eight months. In fact, this post happens to land on what would have been my mom’s birthday. I realize that my life has been all about planning, but the actual doing is not something that I am fully committed to, especially when it comes to staying in the present. I recently got fantastic equipment to do video blogs and connect with clients, but it is still a struggle.

So, I thought why not take a chance? I want to meet the amazing people that follow my blog! I know not everyone is ready. I get it, but one or two people that want to connect I am always open. If you want to meet a fellow mental illness traveler, let us connect over Zoom, which is the great equalizer in these different times. I want to meet people so lets connect!

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by Gabriel Benois on Unsplash

Join James Edgar Skye on Patreon

I launched my Patreon account back in April of 2019, but I was not ready to start a site that allows people into my writing, I am now prepared to put myself out there again. It was a great idea, but not many people can or have the money to be a part of my writing process. A few people have joined me, and I am looking for more patrons of my writing, Today is officially a “re-launch” in hopes that I can begin to take mental health advocacy and to take my writing to the next level.

Become a Patron!

I hope that people will understand what it takes to be a struggling writer and graduate student. Perhaps you will want to become a part of my writing process. I will be more open to sharing my experiences with writing, looking for an agent, and publisher for my major work, The Rise of the Nephilim. I will also be sharing on certain tiers a copy of my book The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir. Other porjects will also be included in certain tiers. Below will be the breakdown of each tier level and what they bring. I hope you will join me on my writing journey no matter the tier that you choose. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

James

Support The Bipolar Writer (Tier One)

In this $2 tier, you help the continued success of The Bipolar Writer blog and the brand. You’re also supporting a struggling Graduate student and writer living with mental illness every day. This tier costs less than a cup of coffee. I have been struggling with mental illness since 2007, and it has affected my ability to hold down a job. Writing is an escaping feeling while also being therapeutic, and now you can be a part of the process of a published author!

  • You get a “First Look” at weekly blog posts for the Bipolar Writer Blog before it goes live! 
  • This tier will help keep my blog writing and help me end the stigma surrounding mental illness.
  • If I get enough at this tier, it will allow me to hire an “editor and manager of my blog.”

The Bipolar Writer Basic Tier

In this $5 tier, you help support James Edgar Skye and his writing endeavors as a Bipolar Writer Maniac! You’re also helping a struggling Graduate student and writer, who is living with Bipolar One. I have been struggling with mental illness since 2007.

  • You get everything in the “Support for The Bipolar Writer” tier.
  • Plus, a special mention in my monthly newsletter when you sign up and access the newsletter to start every new month!
  • A special “Thank you” message when you sign up for this tier.

The Bipolar Writer Mid Tier

In this $10 tier, you help support James Edgar Skye and his writing endeavors as a Bipolar Writer Maniac! You’re also helping a struggling Graduate student and writer, who is living with Bipolar One since 2007.

  • In this mid-level tier, you get everything from the first two tiers. 
  • An exclusive look at a chapter from “The Bipolar Writer: A  Memoir. 
  • Access to a chapter or any short story that is published!
  • The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir published in March 2020. I will, for this $10 tier and above, I will send you two exclusive chapters!
  • As part of this tier, you can also have a one-hour Zoom session with me asking me questions about writing or mental illness/mental health. 

Become a Patron!

Bipolar Writer 2nd Mid Tier

In this $15 tier, you help support James Edgar Skye and his writing endeavors as a Bipolar Writer Maniac! This tier comes with everything in the above tiers. You’re also helping a struggling Graduate student, and writer, who is living with Bipolar One since 2007.

  • The $15 tier, is a special tier that also comes with a personal invitation to my exclusive Patreon community on Discord (which is coming soon!)
  • Also, it will come with other great benefits coming soon that will include a sticker with my logo and other great things coming soon!

The Bipolar Writer Top Tier

In this $25 tier, you help support James Edgar Skye and his writing endeavors as a Bipolar Writer Maniac! You’re also helping a struggling Graduate student and writer, who is living with Bipolar One since 2007.

  •  In this top tier, you get everything from the previous tiers.
  • An exclusive look at my upcoming fantasy fiction novel to include character sketches or a look at the first chapter of the novel “The Rise of the Nephilim” or a peek at “Angel on the Ward.”
  • A Signed Copy of The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir (Note: In this tier, you have to be a Patron for three months before I send out the copy. This is to help offset the costs of printing and shipping.)
  • After being in this tier for three month you get an exclusive The Bipolar Writer mug with my logo. (Be sure to have your address on file so that these items get shipped to you.)

The Bipolar Writer Exclusive

  • This is a limited Edition Tier for my Bipolar Writer Maniacs! In this elite $40 tier, you get all the benefits of the previous tiers plus
  • A signed copy of my memoir The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir, and all future publications.
  • Including the publications of any of my short stories.
  • A signed copy of my novella Angel on the Ward. (Coming soon)
  • My Novel Rise of the Nephilim.
  • After being in this tier for three month you get an exclusive The Bipolar Writer mug with my logo and sticker (be sure to have your address on file so that these items get shipped to you.)

Become a Patron!

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by Hannah Busing on Unsplashy

A James Edgar Skye Projects Update

Photo by Scott Graham on Unsplash

My summer has been nothing short of working to better myself finically, personally, and professionally. James has been super busy working on different projects, and I have some fantastic news. I am starting a business!

That is right. James is using 2020 to really begin to secure his future in writing, teaching, and well other ventures that will better my mental and personal health. So what is coming?

Investing in James

I am so excited to begin my four-month journey to self-discovery in August, as I work with my amazing life coach that will transform who I am by the end. It starts with working with the right life coach who I trust will get me to where I want to be finically, personally, and professionally. I am excited because it is an opportunity to do be a better me. I have achieved so many things in my mental health, it is time to invest in myself! If you want to know more about my life coach, please reach out.

Writing Projects 2020 and Beyond

  • My fiction novella  Angel on the Ward will get its publication this summer or the fall at the latest.
  • My major fantasy fiction novel, The Rise of the Nephilim will be in editing and querying. I am looking for an agent and publisher because of the scope of the project. It will end up being a six-book series. 
  • I know I was supposed to begin interviews for the two-year project The Many faces and Voices of Mental Illness was supposed to begin in July (those that are already on the list will be getting an email soon). The interviews will begin in August. There will always be an invitation to all who want their stories shared in the book if you don’t feel you have a voice. Please contact me through the blog or my author website below. 
  • I have begun to write my major ghostwriting project that will be completed in 2020.

My Ghostwriting Business

Other major news in my life is a lifelong dream. Taking my ghostwriting business to the next level, I will be working on creating an LLC and taking my profession, writing memoirs, and other writing projects to the next level. I will also be creating online courses on the website Udemy. I am looking for all different revenue types in the coming months because I have skills that are useful and can take them to the next level by teaching.

Finishing My Master’s Degree

I am nearing the finish line of something I started in late 2018, finishing my Master’s of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and English. I am looking at a completion early 2021!

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo by Octavian Dan on Unsplash

We Said Goodbye Six Years Ago Today

My Grandfather with his sister circa 2004

The 4th of July has never been the same, I get that it is this fantastic holiday that we, as Americans, celebrate our Independence Day, and I will always honor the day like all of us, just with a sad heart.

On July 3, 2014, we lost my grandfather forever.

Every year I have honored one of the greatest presence in my life, my grandfather. I once wrote a poem about him called The Bravest Man I Knew. I wanted to spend some time this year talking about the man that was always there for me when I needed him since I was a little boy.

My grandfather was born March 18, 1932, in Ewa Beach, Hawaii (pronounced Eva Beach because the “w” is a “v” in the Hawaiian language). My grandfather and grandmother were married in November (I forget the year). My grandfather served in the United States Army for twenty years. He was an amazing man who loved to buy cars, computers, and was very intelligent (where I get my own smarts).

A fact about my grandfather, he was in Hawaii when Pearl Harbor was bombed.

I wish he was here today as I near the end of publishing my first novel. I started going to school for my bachelor’s degree around the time that he got sick with cancer. The doctors gave him six months, and he fought for a year and a half. My grandfather had an amazing spirit, and he was always willing to help his only daughter, my mother, and his grandchildren, he even got to know five out of his six great grandchildren before he passed.

I still remember, he went fast. He was okay in June and then starting on July 2nd be started to lose consciousness and before we knew it he had passed on July 3rd.

It sucked. I was depressed for close to a year after taking care of my grandfather for that year and half. I have never gotten over the suddenness of how cancer can take a person. But he was this amazing man who lived his life, saw the world during his time in the military and drank coffee everyday (which is one of the reasons I am a coffee addict!) My grandfather was, is and always will be loved by those who knew him because he was an amazing man.

Just from these photos, you can see the people that loved him and that five years ago came together to honor this great man. I love my grandfather to this day because he taught me so many great things that I have today. If only he would have seen me continue my recovery with Bipolar 1 and panic disorder, but I believe he is still here in spirit and watching over us with my grandmother.

The last photo was taken weeks before my grandfather passed with his sister visiting. What you don’t see in this photo is all the sweets on his desk not just for him, but his great grandchildren. We all miss you grandpa!

Always Keep Fighting

James

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

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Mental Health Coping Strategies

*This is a repost of an old article and I have updated it to reflect a COVID-19 world we now find ourselves in today.

My Tips on Coping with Mental Illness

At some point we find strategies to cope with the many issues that come along having a mental illness. I know being Bipolar for the last thirteen years I have found things that help with my depression. I am still working on better coping strategies with my social anxiety but I am always a work in progress. Now more than ever this is important to the world that we are living in with the coronavirus.

I want to talk today about some of those coping strategies that I have found effective. I will also talk about some strategies that the experts recommend.

1. Use self-talk – This is one isn’t my recommendation but it makes sense as a coping srategy. I am my own worse enemy and sometimes it can be effective to use self-talk when your depression takes over. You can also use it to convince yourself to get out of bed that day. Talking to yourself can mean the difference between letting depression take you over. It is also very effective against anxiety. Talking to yourself to get up, take a shower, brush your teeth, and eat breakfast is more important as we self isolate. Talking yourself into still finding a routine is paramount in these times.

One of the worst parts of my social anxiety is the catastrophic thinking that goes through my mind. Self-talk can be effective in changing the negative thoughts. I always spend so much time worrying about the possible outcomes of any social interactions. It starts to control me and that it drives me to stress. Which always leads to panic attacks. Talking myself into positive thoughts is one strategy that can work. I have recently talked about the dangers of anxiety in a COVID-19 world, in one of my recent blogs that you can find here.

2. Think Positive thoughts. – I can attest to how thinking postively as a mental health coping strategy. Thinking positive thoughts is so simple and it is an effective way to cope with mental health. Positive thoughts can change your day. It can change a single minute, and it can mean the world.

3. Get More Sleep – Sleep is the most important part of mental health. I can trace all my issues with my Bipolar Disorder to my lack of getting real sleep. My sleep has gotten so bad, that I can’t sleep without the aid of Seroquel. I would love to get eight hours of real sleep a night but my reality is more like four hours.

Sleep hygiene is so important. I wrote a blog post a few months back that will be very helpful with this area. Sleep Hygiene – Top Ten Sleep Tips

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4. Listening to Postive Music. – I love this one because it is so effective. It is why I dedicated a whole series on my blog to music that changes my mood. . Find some music that can help you get through the worst of things. I have a playlist dedicated to this coping strategy.

5. Postive Social Contact – This is something I am bad at in my mental health. It makes sense. The more we interact with other humans in a positive setting it can mean real change. One of the worst things I do with my social anxiety is isolating myself in my own little world. I will spend weeks not leaving my house. Meeting people has changed, but you can still be social online. Sites like Zoom have made it safer and secure to set up meetings between friends and loved ones. 

It’s hard to describe the feeling that comes with when I finally leave my house for a few hours. It means the world to get out and interact with the world. This is one coping strategy that I will have to work on in my own mental health.

6. Writing and Sharing your story. – I can’t imagine a world without me writing in it. It took me so long to get to a place where my writing is a part of me and now I will fight for it forever. It is what makes me get through each day. Its my greatest coping strategy.

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Finding ways to cope within the confines of your mental health is one important strategy. It won’t always be easy. I went through so much trial and error. But I have laid out a few good ways to cope.

I offer this challenge to my mental health bloggers. Write a post about your own mental health coping strategies.

Always Keep Fighting.

James Edgar Skye

You can visit the author site of James Edgar Skye here.

Purchase The Bipolar Writer: A Memoir here.

Become a Patron of James Edgar Skye and be a part of his writing here: Become a Patron!

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoIsaac Davis

unsplash-logoKinga Cichewicz

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