Mood Diaries

Edit: No iPhone over here!  No smartphone at all, just a wee cheap one.

I’m looking for a mood diary.  I’ll fill it in with Robert’s input considering there are a fair amount of times I wouldn’t be able to recognise my own mood.

I want a computerised one because- well, they’re fun!  I like ones where I input more numbers (mood 1-10, hours of sleep etc as I’m very aware that sleep impacts massively on my mood and I exploit that) than words because, at a glance, it’s easier to see where I am.

So if you have any recommendations, hit me up!  If you use one, how useful do you find it?  I’m still feeling fairly low but some self-deception, making sure I don’t sleep too much and attempting to keep busy is helping.  My plan, I guess, is have an emergency stash of medication in the house so when my mood starts to get too high I can knock it on the head or at least sleep.  If I even bother to think it is too high, which is why I’ll need Robert’s help.  In my current Regime, it’s unlikely I’m going to be on any mood stabilisers, and I’ve (genuinely) forgotten to take citalopram in the past few days (I’ll go back on it today), so, self management it is!  I’m mostly fairly self aware and years of practice have meant I’m a lot better at being pro-active in managing my moods than I ever used to be, so I can do it.  I’m trying to organise things in other ways, too.  I have a chalkboard in which I write things to do on it, which makes me feel a bit more like a human, even if I seem to totally neglect the, “Have a Wash” command (but really, I’ve also neglected, “Wash the Towels” so what can you do?)  And I have a year planner in which I’ve written my writing hours in and my class hours.  In glittery pens like a fecking ten year old. Hooray!

I’m very keen not to get unwell.  In December last year I was signed with a literary agency and it seemed like 2010 was going to the Year For Me.  Instead, it’s virtually wiped out by not being entirely well. I don’t want another year like that; there has been far too many already.

31 Responses

  1. If you find one, let me know! I’d love to keep one myself.

  2. I created my own mood diary a few years ago ona journal website meant to be for people who go on round the world trips! Random but effective.
    I’d forgotten the password before this bout of depression so made do with pen and paper this time, so I’d be interested to do an
    Online one too if anyone finds one.
    I keep forgetting to write in mine, plus my minds are swinging right now so not sure how I’d keep up, need a phone app for Blackberry really!

  3. I’ve tried to start a diary many times, and have also tried to log my mood each day versus what I’ve done to see if there are any patterns I’m not aware of. Even with the most basic mood log and nothing else, I find I can’t keep doing it long enough; it feels like another pressure and demand, and when I’m low I can’t see the point or motivation for doing it. I wish I had a “Robert”TM (gender unimportant) to do it with me! Good luck with yours Seaneen.🙂

    BTW, http://www.findingoptimism.com is sometimes interesting to read, and it’s connected to a company that sells some computer software to do a mood diary. I’ve not tried it myself – just passing on the link to anyone who may be interested.

  4. Yes, keep us informed. I just write on my calender at the moment, which leads to some rather mental looking months.

  5. http://www.moodscope.com is the one I’m presently using. Some of the questions it asks are a bit weird in my view, but nevertheless it provides a very good charting system and seems fairly good. You can also share your results with others should you be so inclined. x

  6. http://www.patientslikeme.com

    I used to keep a mood diary here,

    If anyone has an iPhone there is an app called mood journal that costs 3.99 and is quite useful.

    Hope this helps, good luck
    Xxxxxxx

  7. I’ve used http://www.moodchart.org – it is simple, uses a numbered grading system for depression and mania. You can also grade your anxiety and irritability levels. And record how much sleep you got, any changes in weight and what medications you take. Also, you don’t have to fill in every bit if you want to keep it a bit more simple. If I could use it it must be simple!😉

  8. I tried a few and settled on MyMood for the iPhone. Its handy having it on your phone as you can record swings as they happen if you have it on your person most of the time. Out of the ones I experimented with, most of them didnt offer many features or in the case of the findingoptimism one, were bloated and far too expensive for what they do. Mymood records moods on a 1-10 scale along with emoticons to help convey your current state, along with sleep, current medications..it also backs up online, reminds you to update it and you can export data as a spreadsheet. All the data is also available as a graph in the app an has helped me work out better what my patterns are and how they correlate to sleep. If you have an iPhone, it’s cheap, you couldn’t go wrong by trying it. To be honest I was surprised there arent more websites/software offering this sort of thing, I used to keep written mood journals and whilst useful for venting and recalling later what I was like on different meds it never really helped me work out patterns as easily as graphical depiction of my mood swings. Good luck finding something, and hopefully someone will realise what an invaluable tool digital mood journals can be and create something multiplatform and brilliant soon!

  9. http://www.moodtracker.com
    Tracks the things you mentioned. You can also set it up to have alerts for persons of interest (sig other, etc.), if you choose to do so. i also set mine up to remind me every couple of days in case I’ve forgotten to keep track.

  10. I use something called mappiness which is I think an LSE iPhone thing that reminds me twice a day to record something and patientslikeme which sends me an email to remind. Trouble is I’ve been so low for so long that I don’t seem to have recorded anything above 2 on a 1 to 10 scale. Anti-ds come and go, CMHT as ever more concerned by any suspicion of hypo rather than the grinding, disabling depression. Have not even switched a computer for weeks, my tiny amount of e-contact being via this phone. Moan moan. En bref, there is much resource out there, just a matter of finding the discipline to use something, you could always create a very simple spreadsheet of your own. Will post anything I find next time I do switch the computer on. The Jan Scott book “Overcoming Mood Swings” does provide a helpful theoretical frame work. Good luck with it all, David

  11. Now trying MyMood on the phone, guess I should feel elated by the fact that the confusers just let me spend some money from the comfort of my pwn phone. Oops, what shall I buy next? Old cliche but spending money I don’t have is send only to being ratty as a symptom of my bipolar disorder. When it comes down to it, self-management is all there really is, drugs don’t really do anything very much although I do appreciate the knock out benefits of Serpquel…

  12. I use Medhelp.com. They have a whole slew of trackers for different conditions, but the mood tracker and sleep tracker are really useful. You plot in your mood on the scale, then you select any symptoms you’re experiencing, the medications you’re taking, any potential triggers like financial problems or menstruation, and then you can elaborate in a journal at the end if you so choose. The sleep tracker works in a similar way. I’ve tried a bunch of different online mood trackers, and this one has definitely been the most comprehensive and easiest to use so far!

  13. I also use moodtracker.com which I find very useful. Not only can you track your mood, but the site provides line, and bar graphs so you can see your progress. Another useful feature is that you can keep track of your sleep hours and medication dosages.

  14. Sorry Seaneen, just seen your first line. Suggest you find a way of getting an iPhone as they are truly mental – mine has been my only medium of contact with the e-world/real world apart from CMHT in the days/weeks/months that I have not even been able to switch on a desk-top. although now I have, I am researching available mood/sleep/medication sites. So far http://www.moodtracker.com/ and http://www.medhelp.org/land/mood-tracker look usable, give me a week or so and I’ll report back which, if any, I actually use everyday

  15. Seaneen, this is not a mood journal per se, but you can use the metadata function to track it in whatever way will help you; I sporadically track my moods and at first was disturbed at what the statistics were fining in my writing (affection, upset, death, negative, Rated R), but then I have heard that other people generally write a lot of negative and stressful, fragmented stuff so that was good to hear…I have used this website for 21 days and written about 23,000 words. http://750words.com/

    I’m hopeful you can stay as well as possible.

  16. Hi Seaneen,

    I comment very occassionally but am a regular reader. I have just clicked on each of the given links. Those which require an IPhone would be no good for me as like you I don’t have one. Does everything need an iphone these days, I ask myself.

    I am very wary of those online diaries that require very personal details/info which seem, although I may have misunderstood, to be able to do whatever they like with the information they hold on one (as stated in their privacy policies!) I feel those would make me a little paranoid simply because I would want it for personal tracking.

    I quite like the one which is annonymous and also contributes to research. But that it seems needs an iphone also argghhh….

    I like the idea of this mood tracker diary. Latterly I have been low of mood. Living with an inherited connective tissue disorder causing chronic pain which in my middle age now is really getting me down. I would like to be more in control of how I am feeling and wonder if this type of thing would help me.

    I would be really interested to read your thoughts if you do find one that is helpful or whether you found the filling in of it all was depressing in itself. Valuing your opinion.

    I think the fact that you are thinking logically about how to maintain an evenness of mood is in itself positive.

    Someone who was good with all things computer related could probably design something that didn’t require signing up for or paying for; using data collection techniques already available on a normal laptop by ascertaining what criteria you wanted tracking and then with the click of a button turning it all into a nice chart.! Wishful thinking perhaps.

    I am unsure if you could get something like disabled students allowance at all for the courses you are thinking of signing up for. If you were eligible it may be that an iphone or similar could be a useful tool to assist you.

    Now I have written all that I don’t feel as though I have helped in any way at all as you were asking for suggestions not my muddled thoughts. I am going to be bold though and submit. I often want to comment but chicken out at the last moment.

    I also am very very hopeful you can stay well.

  17. Oooh, I’m going to have to check these things out myself. Thanks for this post!

  18. When I am required to rate my mood between 1 and 10 I always ask what 10 represents and the answer is always good.
    I feel like pointing out that i my mood only went as far as 10 I wouldnt have a problem, the reality is that it goes up to at least 20 and 17 involves running through the mall half naked kicking policemen.

  19. Seaneen,

    I couldn’t get to your blog for a while so I thought something might have happened. I’m glad that it was a mistake on my part, and that you are doing well. I enjoy reading your thoughts on everything.

    all the best,

    Seana

  20. I used Mood Tracker a few years back, but I didn’t rate it, seems however there are more to choose from now!

  21. I like the Medhelp trackers as well because I can decide what it will ask me about my mood. An individualized tracker works best for me.

    You need to register but it is free so I like that too.

    You can also print out the graph to bring to a therapist if you want to.

  22. @ BP 24/7 the convention (but it does vary) on the 1-10 scale is that 1 is so low you are so catatonic that you are probably dead whereas 10 so high that you’re probably in physical and pharma restraints so 5 is the midpoint. I once asked my psychiatrist “what is normal?” to be told “whatever is normal for you” which of course rather depends on the sort of mood I am in🙂 Best bet is to agree specifically what whomever what the scale represents you _both_ If I told my lot I was 10 I would be 999ed to a place of safety….

  23. I used

    moodscope

    It gives you diffferent moods and you rate them from one to four, then it gives you an overall score and plots it on a graph. you can also set it up so when you’ve done it, it emails someone of your choosing so they can access your graphs.

    don’t know if that’s help, but its the only one i’ve stuck to so far!

  24. I’ve been using moodtracker for a few months now – good for sleep and med tracking. Has forum too, if that floats yer boat…Options for rating mood aren’t subtle enough, I think.

    I’ve just signed up for moodscope and my first impressions are that it’ll more accurately chart moods.

    Maybe use both if you can be arsed – I’m gonna try to for a while.
    Regards
    T

  25. I use http://moodpanda.com , I like its friendly simple interface and that it connects to twitter+facebook🙂

  26. trying http://www.moodpanda.com/ now: the fact that it twitters and does facebook probably helpful, harder to hide

  27. I’m amazed, I have to admit. Seldom do I encounter a blog that’s both equally educative and engaging, and let me tell you, you’ve hit the nail on the head. The problem is something which not enough folks are speaking intelligently about. I’m very happy I stumbled across
    this during my hunt for something relating to this.

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