advertisement

Work and Bipolar or Depression

Mahevash Shaikh
We are living in the age of the gig economy, but how are these side hustles affecting depression? According to Forbes, more and more people are freelancing due to the pandemic. With freelance life being highly uncertain, I know people who are looking for/working day jobs in addition to freelancing. While it can be monetarily and soulfully rewarding, having a side hustle may have a negative impact on depression. Let's see why. 
Nori Rose Hubert
It can be a struggle to say "no" on the job. We live in a culture that prioritizes productivity and output over physical and mental wellbeing. Many people feel obligated to take on more work than they can handle at one time, or to provide labor that they are unfairly compensated for. Learning to say "no" in the workplace is an act of self-preservation, and it's especially important for folks who work with bipolar disorder.
Mahevash Shaikh
If you have depression, especially for an extended period of time, you might also have a case of internalized ableism. The combination of depression and internalized ableism can have a severe impact on your work and career. Let's take a look. 
Nori Rose Hubert
Let's be honest: job hunting is demoralizing if you're neurotypical. There are so many uncertainties that can wear you down when seeking a new position—and when you live with bipolar disorder, job hunting stressors can lead to changes in mood, which could result in a full-blown episode of depression or mania. It may be easier said than done, but a critical key to preventing mood episodes while you're on the prowl for a new job is learning ways to keep yourself motivated.
Nori Rose Hubert
It's true that correlation does not equal causation. It's also true that some of the world's most innovative and creative people have been affected by bipolar disorder, from Carrie Fisher to Halsey. Psychologists and scientific researchers have been examining the link between bipolar disorder and creativity for a very long time, and while the subject is not without controversy, examining the correlation between bipolar disorder and creativity may be helpful for folks with the illness working to build a creative professional life for themselves.
Mahevash Shaikh
Speaking from personal experience, being single isn't easy -- even when it comes to the workplace. There are several reasons for this, but today, I want to focus on how single employees might be depressed because they are overworked and undervalued. The common assumption is that if someone is single, they are far more available for work than their married and committed coworkers. They are supposed to work longer hours by default, and work is often unceremoniously dumped on them without their consent. Over time, chronic overworking leads to mental health issues like burnout and depression, especially if an individual is underpaid and undervalued.
Mahevash Shaikh
We are two weeks into 2021, so it's safe to assume that most of us are back at work. But instead of healing you, what if the holidays made you realize you want to hibernate until the pandemic is over? In other words, if you're too depressed to work, here are some tips from someone in the same boat as you. I promise you will not find the usual suggestions to meditate, exercise, or journal; I'm sure you've already tried those.
Nori Rose Hubert
Ah, self-employment, it's a dream that many aspire to -- and that many succeed at with enough time, patience, and grit. For folks with bipolar, self-employment offers a number of advantages as well as challenges. If you struggle with work and bipolar disorder, self-employment may be an option worth exploring.
Nori Rose Hubert
I think it's a safe bet to say that we are all ready for 2020 to be over, but perhaps not ready to start planning the new year with bipolar disorder. This year threw us a global pandemic, severe economic downturn, mass civil unrest, growing urgency around climate change, and perhaps the most volatile presidential election in US history. Then there were the thousands of personal losses so many of us faced (and are still facing): jobs, income, stability, housing, treasured time spent with family and friends, relationships strained to the breaking point due to political division, and loved ones whose lives were cut short by COVID-19. While the New Year is usually a time of hope and optimism, many folks -- especially those of us with mental health challenges like bipolar disorder -- are finding it hard to look ahead in the face of so much heartache and discouragement. Fortunately, planning for the new year with bipolar disorder doesn't have to take a tremendous amount of effort.
Nori Rose Hubert
Have you ever been asked to describe where you see yourself in five years during a job interview? Some people find this kind of question tricky to answer (if 2020 taught us anything, it's that a lot can change in one year, let alone five) while others have an entire career blueprint they've been building off of since their first career fair. Whether you're a fresh graduate uncertain of your next steps, transitioning careers later in life, or have been pursuing your calling ever since you were old enough to answer when someone asked what you wanted to be when you grew up, creating a long-term career plan with bipolar disorder comes with a unique set of challenges -- and rewards.