Ten more minutes of this
while we pipe in a bit of Clinton Ford
and you'll be right as rain and
back running the country in no time.
This month's topic for BIO made me panic a little bit - how to distill those years of lunacy and the subsequent mending into only five things.
I have experienced both depression and mania and while I can't claim the former was any fun, the latter can be helpful. Set up a business in an afternoon, write a dissertation in days, renovate a house single-handedly.
But it's bloody tiring being bonkers, and so, after many many years of talking and reading and crying and rocking in corners and soul-searching and all the tediously predictable things people do in the search for peace of mind, and which, au fond, are only of interest to oneself, here are my top five ways to shred your sanity.
1. Being surrounded by unhealthy people
Especially if you are of a bent to mend and they are of a bent to drag along self-indulgent and self-inflicted drama. Look closely - is it really such bad, bad luck all the time? And is it really your problem or do you want to be needed too much? Either way, when the curtain goes up on another act, politely excuse yourself and find a bathroom to clean.
2. Not getting enough sleep or exercise
Everything looks worse when you're exhausted and unfit. Get out of your house and walk about; at the very least you can look for interesting new places to be glum in. I guarantee you will feel marginally less so by the end of a brisk walk.
3. Eating crap processed pretend food
Make yourself soup. Everyone can manage that. Nourish yourself, body and soul. If you eat rubbish, it gives you the absolute mean reds. And its horribly inelegant.
4. Pleasing everyone else before yourself
I find martyrdom desperately unattractive. I also find many martyrs want far too much recognition for their sacrifices than real-life saints would ever expect. They are also often passive aggressive nightmares. And frequently lack direction and purpose, so use the excuse of putting other needs first to mask this. As long as you are not unkind or neglectful, following your own path will help keep you off the meths.
5. Spending time in the wrong place - mentally, emotionally, physically
Tough as hell to admit you're not where you should be, and often a nightmare to extricate, but really listen to your instincts. You won't be the first person to have made a mistake. And anyone who judges you for it should be sent immediately to Coventry for a long long time.
Don't go too far though, there's a little bit of madness in all creative people.