Seattle-based cartoonist Ellen Forney was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1998, shortly before her 30th birthday. She documented her struggle to find mental stability while retaining her creativity in her graphic memoir, “Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo and Me,” which published in 2012.
Forney’s follow-up, “Rock Steady: Brilliant Advice From My Bipolar Life,” focuses on the coping tools she picked up along the way, including her “Rock Steady strategy” for maintaining stability:
• Get enough sleep.
• Take your medicine if it’s part of your treatment.
• Eat well.
• See your doctor.
• Practice meditation and mindfulness.
• Get regular exercise.
• Keep a regular routine.
• Have plenty of coping tools.
• Have a solid emotional and logistical support system.
That support system might include mental health professionals, and finding the right people can be tough, Forney writes. Read her guide to therapy below, and follow @thelilynews on Instagram as we feature excerpts from Forney’s book in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month: