Morning Faces Therapy Improvements

A friend with bipolar disorder writes:

I began the morning faces therapy in April, 1997. I can think of only two significant changes over the years in my use of the therapy: 1) I use a mirror instead of videotapes, and 2) I accept that once or twice a week I’m too tired to start as early as I’d like (so I get more sleep instead). To elaborate:

1) When I restarted the treatment in 2006 after having been hospitalized, I was too depressed to deal with videotaping. In fact, I was too depressed to get out of bed so early. The mirror solved both problems, because I could easily prop it on my mattress top. After a few days I was able to get up, allowing me to listen to music, use bright lights, etc., during the treatment.

2) Whether for lack of discipline or the proper genes, I simply can’t go to sleep early enough so that I can get up early every morning. (Granted, I haven’t tried everything, but for the sake of the argument, let it stand.) This shortcoming used to bother me a great deal. Then on October 6th, 2011, I read in this blog about someone else who didn’t always start the treatment early, because he was “too tired to get up early”. Well! It didn’t seem so bad if someone else had the same problem. Over the years I’ve found that starting 30-60 minutes late once or twice a week doesn’t seem to perturb my mood enough to cause great concern.

3 Responses to “Morning Faces Therapy Improvements”

  1. BlueMorrissey Says:

    As a bipolar guy, I appreciate your story. I also struggle with the discipline of getting up early and always doing morning faces. I cannot for the life of me look at my face in the mirror. Fortunately I watch CNBC in the morning which has studio hosts that look into the camera and my tv is HD and large enough to keep them close to actual size faces.

    Music while walking on the treadmill helps too. Like you I just can’t wake up in the morning and exercise late, which probably only keeps me up later. I am lucky to have a job that does not start until late in the afternoon so I am not in a rush in the morning. I honestly just feel better when I sleep late, even when I had a 7 am job for 10 years, I could never get my circadian clock in sync and always seemed to be lethargic, unless manic. Good luck getting that balance. I’m always experimenting as i’m sure you are too.

  2. Donald Says:

    I’ve recently started morning faces therapy and I still don’t know if it works but I do enjoy my routine – before I get out of bed (or after I come back to bed with a cup of tea) I open up my laptop and watch some interviews on bigthink.com for 30 minutes. I watch it full screen but I don’t think the faces are life-size, if there’s a way round that I’d be keen to know.

    For me the therapy isn’t purely face therapy, people are talking about inspiring and motivating goals and achievements, often with rags to riches overtones (and I remember reading that it is often goal-oriented events that trigger hypomania so this subject matter is far from neutral).

    There’s lots of scope for tweaks to effectiveness but the positive side at the moment is that it doesn’t take discipline.

  3. Kim Says:

    I would like to subscribe to your blog. Where is the subscribe button?

    I too, do many self-experiments and have done iodine and coconut oil with success for foot and nail fungus. The jury is still out on the plantar’s wart I have had since my teens and the wart that popped up on my hand after I had a ‘deep cleaning’ done to my teeth by the periodontist.