Mood cycles

I tend to cycle through moods. My self-awareness isn’t very good in this area, though I seem to be getting better with recognizing it. The cycles are of varying lengths, from weeks to months, and tend to end in unkind arguments. The next day, back to normal. My wife can usually tell about 7-10 days ahead of time that things are building up in me. Do any of you have these mood cycles?

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My cycles vary. The are sometimes unpredictable, but they also can be triggered by significant stress or changes such as missing medication, dealing with grief, work or family stress, or even changes in routine. I find that the best way to manage my moods is to be proactive about it. I try to attend to things like sleep, medication, and routine. I stay engaged in therapy and I try to keep in contact with friends. I try not to let myself backslide too much when I start to get depressed, but I’m not always successful.

I think it’s unique to each person as to their mood cycle. Sometimes there’s a seasonal pattern or biological change pattern, other times it’s related to other things. A lot of times, though, there is no predicting or controlling for these mood changes. It’s important to have good coping skills and good supports in place for when things get tough.

Good luck!


Thank you for your response. It’s good to know that others also experience some of this. Mine also occur in times of stress. For decades, not knowing any better, I blamed them on my wife. I don’t have very good self-awareness, though I am working on it. I think I have found some indicators when my mood starts to swing. All I can do at this point is to exercise and meditate. Barkley talked about depleting the self-regulatory system, and that I should attend to that when it happens. I think this, somehow, has something to do with it, but all he said was meditate, exercise, and tell yourself “you can do it.”
I wonder whether this is a dopamine crash due to excess copper or inadequate zinc. I would favor the former because my multivitamin contains zinc. I have some research to do with this topic.


Thanks for sharing. I am a week and a half into my diagnosis. I finally understand why people thought I was always angry or hating everything around me. :pensive:
Knowing is half the battle I suppose. I’m looking for coping strategies. Getting a better understanding about chemistry is definitely going to help with being the best me possible for others.

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Some important things for you to know. Take these to the bank.

  1. You are not a victim. You create victims around you. Understand they are doing the best they can, too.
  2. Learn to meditate if you have not done so already.
  3. You need to work out for at least 3.5 hours/week.
  4. Get rid of carbohydrates as much as possible.
  5. I don’t know how to change being distracted or impulsive or over-focused. It takes some getting used to just to understand what those things really mean in your life.
  6. The real battle is with the emotional part of ADHD. Listen to the you tube lectures of Barkley on ADHD and you will begin to understand and to figure out what you can fix and how to fix it. You will if you think about it.
  7. There is no limit to the things in life you can be grateful for.
  8. There is no magic potion or pill, just a lifetime of adapting - and you are good at adapting.
  9. If you love someone and they love you, be kind to that person. If they don’t have ADHD and they truly love you, they have many challenges ahead of them, too.
  10. The sun will still come up regardless of whether you have ADHD or not. But it is a matter of how you greet the sunrise every day that determines your life.

You have many challenges ahead of you. You have been trying to live a non-ADHD life when you have ADHD. How could you not be angry and cynical? You will always be right where you are supposed to be in your life. No one ever told you before that you think differently, speak differently, understand differently, and emote differently. You are God’s child, so you are OK. I am glad you are beginning a journey to understand yourself better. You don’t have to be a better person for anyone else other than yourself.

For all of the above - you CAN take that to the bank.