As an individual who constantly is battling the appearance of these manic depression symptoms, you might not have given very much thought to the idea of goal setting. But these actions are very vital steps along your road to recovery. You definitely want to work on goals when you can. As a person with manic depression, in fact, you may even want to check into the possibility of engaging the services of a life coach.

But if you decide you can handle goal setting on your own, you'll appreciate some of these suggestions.

First, to help determine your goals - and this goes for all of us, whether or not we have manic depression or not - ask yourself the following questions:

* What motivates me and keeps my interest? * If I could do more of any activity - regardless of my manic depression - what would it be? * Before I was diagnosed with manic depression, what would arouse my passions? * What direction do I want my life to take - regardless of the manic depression? * What brings me joy - even in the midst of my manic depression? * Even with my diagnosis of manic depression, I still have hopes and dreams. What are they?

Don't overwhelm yourself with your pursuit of goals. Some days your manic depression will be worse than others. On those days you'll no doubt ever wonder how you could possibly write the great American novel while suffering with the symptoms of manic depression.

It's also good to split your goals in two categories. It's especially important if you suffer from manic depression. For example, you may want to choose a series of short-term goals as well as long term goals. For example, your short term goals may be those that specifically deal with certain symptoms of your manic depression and relate directly to your behavior.

A great short term goal may be something like: 'I need to be out of bed before 10 a.m. tomorrow morning.' If that's not something you do with much consistency because of your manic depression, then this is a great goal. You may also establish a manic depression related goal that would commit you to finishing one household chore on a certain day.

Long-term goals for a person with manic depression may relate to taking the first step toward job training or gaining experience for a new job. You may also want to change a specific situation you're in. Or if you're dealing with manic depression, one of your long term goals may also include rebuilding a relationship with a family member or a friend whose feelings you've bruised.

Remember two words: Baby steps. Just by the nature of your illness, your manic depression may set certain limits on what you can accomplish in one day. But don't let this discourage you. Every great adventure had to begin with that very first step!