How it feels to have hypomania | Laura’s Mental Health Story | Mind
I think it can be really difficult to explain
what hypomania feels like, to other people who don’t experience it because some of
the ways that you feel and behave when you’re hypomanic can seem relatively normal. They’re
things that a lot of people do some of the time but, with hypomania, they’re a lot
more extreme. For me, first and foremost, I’m a lot more active when I’m hypomanic.
I want to do more things and I feel really capable of doing a lot of things and of cramming
a lot into my days. Recently, this has taken the form of doing a lot of baking all of the
time when I’m hypomanic, which I guess, is a relatively wholesome activity to be doing
and to be channelling my energies into. But it can be problematic as well if I get home
from work and just want to bake all the time and then bake into the early hours of the
morning and then, doing the same the next day. Then, it can start to affect my sleep.
I’ve also ruined a lot of people’s January health kicks in the office because I quite
often take the proceeds into work. Sleep is, I guess, another problem with hypomania
in that I feel like I don’t need to sleep as much and some of the time, I don’t sleep
as much. Quite a lot of the time, I get ideas that whatever I want to do, I can just stay
up all night, doing that and I don’t need to go to sleep at all. So, really have to
try hard not to do that. Generally, as well, I feel a lot more confident when I’m hypomanic.
I feel wittier, I feel like I’ve got a lot of interesting things to say and I probably
talk more and post a lot more on social media. Some of the time, I can feel really focused
and I get more done than usual and particularly, at work.
I guess, as well, I do get rushing thoughts sometimes. My internal monologue goes a lot
faster and doesn’t stop for a breath and I guess, just in general, my head just feels
really buzzy and I just feel really energetic and… Yes, I mean, those kind of things are
not always a problem in themselves, in hypomania. Particularly if it’s accompanied by a euphoric,
happy feeling. It can be really nice, obviously and it’s really nice to be able to get a
lot done but there are also things that can be more difficult.
Some of the times, I can feel really irritable when I’m hypomanic. I can also feel really
restless, insatiably restless and that’s really a frustrating way to feel. And I guess,
another thing I feel that isn’t particularly nice is sometimes, I feel like I’m not quite
in control, that the world is just happening really fast round about me and I’m caught
up in it and carried along by everything I’m doing. But I can’t really stop to think,
which is slightly unpleasant too. I think, though, the main worrying, problematic
thing about hypomania to me, is the risk that it can escalate into a more extreme way of
behaving or thinking. I think the worst it’s got for me was, a few years ago, I started
to think that I had special powers. Specifically, that if I was to fall from quite a high height,
that it wouldn’t hurt. That I would somehow… That I was somehow invincible, that I would
bounce or something. So, obviously, that’s quite a dangerous way to think. And I would
really hope that a hypomanic episode would not escalate to that point.