Aliqua Magna Elit
June 12, 2024

Mastering Hypomania: Strategies for Taming Your Inner 'Dragon

Written by
Jessica Miller
Published on
June 12, 2024

Hypomania, often characterized by elevated mood, increased energy, and impulsive behavior, can be a challenging aspect of bipolar disorder to manage. This article delves into effective strategies for 'taming your inner dragon,' offering practical advice on how to recognize symptoms, manage impulsivity, create a calming environment, maintain a routine, navigate relationships, practice self-care, and recognize triggers.

Key Takeaways

Understanding Hypomania

Recognizing the Symptoms

Hypomania is a psychological state associated with mood disorders that commonly results in grandiose thoughts, high energy levels, and decreased sleep. Individuals experiencing hypomania may appear elated, euphoric, or irritable. They often exhibit heightened activity and may be talkative to the point of betraying tightly guarded secrets. Recognizing these symptoms early can help in managing the condition effectively.

The Impact on Daily Life

Hypomania can significantly impact daily life. While some individuals may work long and hard due to their inability to rest, others may find themselves making impulsive decisions that affect their relationships and finances. The hypomanic state can foster a lively attention to everything, but it can also lead to absentmindedness and a lack of consideration for the consequences of one's actions.

Differentiating from Mania

Mania tends to be extreme, with psychotic symptoms such as delusions or hallucinations, whereas hypomania is less intense and often perceived as its “harmless” cousin. However, hypomania is not harmless; it can lead to significant issues if not managed properly. Unlike mania, individuals with hypomania remain amenable to reason, making it crucial to recognize and address the symptoms before they escalate.

Managing Impulsivity

Strategies to Delay Decisions

When experiencing hypomania, it can be challenging to pause and consider the consequences of your actions. Recklessness is a common symptom of bipolar disorder — even outside of mania. Effective coping tools can keep impulsivity in check and prevent negative fallout. One practical approach is to delay significant decisions for at least 24 hours. This allows time to reach out to your support network and gain perspective.

Building a Support Network

A strong support network is crucial for managing impulsivity. This network can include friends, family, and mental health professionals who understand your condition and can offer guidance. Regular check-ins with these individuals can provide a reality check and help you stay grounded.

Mindfulness Techniques

Mindfulness practices, such as meditation and deep breathing exercises, can help you stay present and reduce impulsive behaviors. These techniques can be particularly useful during hypomanic episodes when your mind is racing. Incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine can create a buffer against impulsivity.

It's important to remember that managing impulsivity is a continuous process. By implementing these strategies, you can better navigate the challenges of hypomania and maintain control over your actions.

Creating a Calming Environment

Crafting a calming environment is essential for managing hypomania. Consistency is key in maintaining a space that promotes relaxation and reduces stress. By enlisting the senses, you can create a soothing atmosphere that helps calm the stormiest of moods.

The Importance of Routine

Regular Sleep Patterns

Sleep disturbances can be both a primary symptom and a trigger for bipolar mood episodes. Creating a sustainable routine for falling asleep each night and waking up each morning goes a long way toward preventing future mood swings. Consider consulting with a psychiatrist or therapist to bolster your medication regime and take practical steps toward establishing and maintaining a steady sleep schedule.

Consistent Daily Activities

Incorporating digital tools, like smartphone reminders and voice assistants, can help automate reminders for important tasks and appointments. Experiment with different organizational methods, such as bullet journaling or digital task management systems, to find what works best for you. Getting regular sleep, meals, and exercise is a powerful way to help reduce potential triggers of this mental condition.

Balancing Work and Rest

Balancing work and rest is crucial for managing hypomania. Create habits to prevent losing items, like always putting your keys, phone, and other essentials in the same place. This small adjustment can significantly improve daily functioning. Additionally, cultivating a wellness lifestyle that includes regular breaks and relaxation techniques can help maintain balance.

Never stop working with your dragon. Sometimes, taking a step back and deferring significant choices for at least 24 hours can help you make more balanced decisions.

Navigating Relationships

Communicating with Loved Ones

Effective communication is crucial when dealing with hypomania. Building a strong relationship takes work, and when one partner has bipolar disorder, thriving together takes a more focused effort. Open and honest conversations about your condition can help your loved ones understand what you're going through. This understanding can foster empathy and patience, which are essential for maintaining healthy relationships.

Setting Boundaries

Setting clear boundaries is vital for both you and your loved ones. Boundaries help protect your mental health and ensure that your relationships remain supportive rather than stressful. Discussing and agreeing on these boundaries during stable periods can prevent misunderstandings and conflicts during hypomanic episodes.

Seeking Professional Help

Professional help can be invaluable in managing the relational aspects of hypomania. Therapists can provide strategies for improving communication and setting boundaries. They can also offer support for your loved ones, helping them to better understand and cope with your condition. Seeking professional help is a proactive step towards maintaining healthy and supportive relationships.

Relationships are containers: “we have been in this marriage together for years.” This metaphor highlights the importance of mutual support and understanding in maintaining a healthy relationship.

Self-Care Practices

Physical Exercise

Engaging in regular physical exercise is crucial for maintaining mental health. Activities like yoga, swimming, or a daily walk can significantly improve your mood and overall well-being. Exercise helps to release endorphins, which are natural mood lifters.

Healthy Eating Habits

A balanced diet plays a vital role in mental health. Consuming a variety of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains can help stabilize your mood. Avoiding excessive sugar and caffeine is also beneficial.

Mental Health Check-ins

Regular mental health check-ins are essential. This can involve journaling your thoughts, talking to a therapist, or simply taking a moment to assess your emotional state. Keeping track of your mental health can help you recognize early signs of distress and take proactive steps to manage them.

So, these are just a few suggestions you may want to consider. In the end, it helps to find what self-care practices work best for you. There are certainly other ways that I didn’t list. The important thing is that they be healthy coping skills and not unhealthy coping mechanisms (yes, there is a difference).

Wishing you a balanced journey ahead.

Recognizing Triggers

Identifying Personal Triggers

Understanding your personal triggers is crucial in managing hypomania. Stress, certain medications, and arguments with loved ones are common triggers for bipolar mood episodes, experts say. Recognizing these can help you take proactive steps to mitigate their impact.

Keeping a Mood Journal

A mood journal can be an invaluable tool. By tracking your daily emotions, activities, and any significant events, you can identify patterns that precede hypomanic episodes. This practice not only helps in recognizing triggers but also in understanding the nuances of your mood changes.

Developing Coping Mechanisms

Once you've identified your triggers, developing effective coping mechanisms is essential. This might include mindfulness techniques, physical exercise, or seeking support from loved ones. The goal is to create a toolkit of strategies that you can rely on when you notice early signs of a hypomanic episode.

Recognizing and managing triggers is a continuous process that requires self-awareness and proactive measures. By staying vigilant and prepared, you can better navigate the challenges of hypomania.


Mastering hypomania is a continuous journey that requires self-awareness, support, and effective strategies. By understanding the triggers and symptoms, creating a calming environment, and seeking help from your support network, you can manage the impulsivity and energy bursts that come with hypomania. Remember, it's not about suppressing your 'dragon' but learning to tame it and harness its energy in a way that enhances your life rather than disrupts it. Stay vigilant, stay connected, and never underestimate the power of small, mindful decisions in maintaining your mental health.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is hypomania?

Hypomania is a mood state characterized by persistent disinhibition and mood elevation (euphoria). It is less severe than full-blown mania and does not include psychotic symptoms.

How can I recognize the symptoms of hypomania?

Symptoms of hypomania include increased energy, decreased need for sleep, heightened creativity, rapid speech, and impulsive behavior. It is important to monitor these symptoms as they can escalate.

How does hypomania impact daily life?

Hypomania can lead to impulsive decisions, strained relationships, and difficulty maintaining daily routines. While it may initially feel positive, it can have negative long-term effects if not managed properly.

What are some strategies to manage impulsivity during hypomanic episodes?

Strategies include delaying decisions, building a support network, and practicing mindfulness techniques. These can help you pause and consider the consequences of your actions.

Why is it important to differentiate hypomania from mania?

Differentiating hypomania from mania is crucial because mania is more severe and includes psychotic symptoms. Proper diagnosis ensures appropriate treatment and management.

How can I create a calming environment to manage hypomania?

Creating a calming environment involves using sensory tools like calming music, scents, and a safe space. These elements can help reduce overstimulation and promote relaxation.

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