Learn the concepts of Bipolar IN Order
Become proficient with our advanced Assessments
Integrate our advanced tools into your practice
Help your clients create realistic short and long-term goals
Become established as an expert in bipolar treatment
Join the Bipolar IN Order Team
Learn how to market more effectively
Create a steady stream of new clients through the success of existing ones
At only $149, it is an opportunity you cannot afford to miss!
We have developed a comprehensive program for you to use with your clients. The self-paced Continuing Education Unit course will teach you what you need to help your clients succeed. When you complete the course you become certified to teach the program and use the concepts with your clients. Your training is certified by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences (PCE#4050). Details of the CEU course are outlined below.
Each of your new clients goes through an eight week program to build a foundation of knowledge and expectations for moving forward. Each week includes four to five hours online study and exercises. You meet with the client individually or in groups to facilitate learning, but also to do assessments and help in choosing the right tools. The final two weeks are about creating clear and measurable plans for them to move forward. You play a central role in helping them to develop their plans.
Once the client completes the eight week course, you provide ongoing support to help him/her achieve the goals. By that point you have established a long-term relationship with the client and can direct it as you determine. We have helped create the foundation for your success, the rest is up to you.
All One Day Workshops Run from 9 AM till 5 PM Includes 7 CEUs - (PCE#4050)
Friday June 14
Saturday June 15
Saturday June 22
Friday June 28
Saturday June 29
For any cancellation, credit will be given for a future workshop or online course.
"Bipolar In Order provides the essential message that symptom reduction or elimination is far from the main goal of adaptation and intervention. Sure to challenge traditional thinking, this important work is integrative and wise."
- Stephen P. Hinshaw, PhD, Professor and Chair, Dept of Psychology, UC Berkeley
"Bipolar IN Order explores the positive value of mania and depression, linking it to Eastern traditions of mental discipline, while at the same time appreciating the need for warranted medical diagnosis and treatment. He also describes a team approach oriented towards recovery rather than remission. While complex, and not one size fits all, his approach may help many better understand, treat, and appreciate this condition."
- S. Nassir Ghaemi MD MPH Professor of Psychiatry, Director of Mood Disorders Program, Tufts Medical Center
"Tom is doing something no one else is really doing. He is turning a serious mental illness on its head and suggesting that by accepting rather than fighting the disorder, people with bipolar can identify and access their strengths and lead lives that are not only satisfying but productive beyond their wildest imaginings. Tom is standing up to the pervasive deficit-based view of people with psychiatric disorders that is held by both mental health professionals and the lay public alike and saying with grace, humor, and the strength of personal experience that it is possible to take this disorder and live abundantly and creatively. Tom is helping people to both face up to their illness and to resist accepting a diminished story of their lives and futures through self-acceptance and cooperation with caring psychiatrists and therapists. Tom is ahead of the pack. He is staking out new territory and leading the way in showing people with brain-based disorders like bipolar that it is possible to live richly."
- Maureen Duffy Ph.D., Professor and Chairperson, The Counseling Program, Barry University
"Bipolar Advantage offers a comprehensive program for bipolars to find their own type of balance--to be themselves and in control at the same time."
- John D. Gartner, Ph.D, Author of The Hypomanic Edge: The Link Between (a Little) Craziness and (a Lot) of Success in America
"I found Tom Wootton's Bipolar IN Order a unique perspective on bipolar disorder, something the author himself has. If you or a loved one lives with bipolar disorder, the book is worth taking a look at for a very different and much-needed perspective on this disorder."
- John M. Grohol, PSY.D., CEO & Founder - Psych Central
"I admire your courage, and the way in which you are using your own experience of bipolarity to try to help others. Indeed, the main message -- which comes across very clearly -- is definitely needed: Bipolar disorder is not something to be ashamed of; it is not a "life sentence"; and with proper attention, it need not even be regarded as a disease."
- Jim Phelps, MD, Director of the Mood Disorders Program at Samaritan Mental Health, Author of Why Am I Still Depressed? Recognizing and Managing the Ups and Downs of Bipolar II and Soft Bipolar Disorder
Our Education Team
Our courses are certified for Continuing Education Credits by the California State Office of Behavioral Health (PCE#4050). With the exception of the legal and ethical class requirements that are not a part of our courses, the Bipolar In Order Course alone fulfills more than a year of Continuing Education Units for licensed therapists.
There are many sites claiming to have solutions for depression and bipolar. It is difficult to know if what they say is valid. We took our program to the top experts in the field to get their opinions. The people teaching and running the bipolar programs at Universities, editing the academic journals, and writing books from a doctor's perspective are impressed. You can see a few of their comments in the box on the right.
As we shared our ideas with the professionals in the field, many of them were so excited that they decided to join our team. You can read brief a bio of some of them below.
Tom Wootton - President, Bipolar Advantage
Tom Wootton is the author of The Bipolar Advantage, The Depression Advantage, and Bipolar In Order. He developed new concepts that he integrated into the first Bipolar In Order workshops in 2002. Since that time he has developed a series of workshops dealing with depression and bipolar. He has been considered a leading consumer advocate and speaker and has been giving talks to consumer groups, mental health leaders, and doctors. He gives keynote speeches to conferences nationwide on mental health.
Arsalan Malik, MD
Dr. Arsalan Malik is a psychodynamic psychiatrist in private practice in Santa Monica and West LA. He completed his residency in psychiatry at the Menninger Clinic and Baylor College of Medicine. During that time he served as the on-site chief resident of the Menninger Clinic where he specialized in addressing the complex medical, psychiatric and substance use difficulties of high achieving individuals no longer functioning successfully in the workplace and/or at home. He developed his special interest and expertise in the treatment of mood and co-occurring personality disorders at this time using a comprehensive and integrated, multidisciplinary treatment approach.
Maureen Duffy, PhD
Maureen Duffy is a professor of counseling and family therapy and a practicing couples and family therapist. She is highly regarded in the marriage and family therapy world and is on the editorial boards of The Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, The Family Journal, and The Journal of Systemic Therapies. She is the Co-Editor of The Qualitative Report, a journal dedicated to qualitative research and inquiry. She is also the Co-Editor of the "Family and Health" column in The Family Journal. Maureen is a co-founder of the International Institute for Human Understanding and of Open U - a new adventure in education for anyone interested in increasing their understanding of interpersonal and inter-cultural relations.
Michael R. Edelstein, PhD
Dr. Edelstein was a Training Supervisor and Fellow of the Albert Ellis Institute. He holds a diploma in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and is on the Board of Advisors of the National Association of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists. He is Past President of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapy. He is a Certified Sex Therapist and has served as a Consulting Psychologist for the National Save-A-Life League, Inc., the oldest suicide prevention center in the United States.
Rochelle I. Frank, PhD
Dr. Frank is an assistant clinical professor in the Clinical Sciences Training Program at U.C. Berkeley, and in the Department of Psychiatry at U.C.S.F. School of Medicine. She is also an adjunct professor of clinical psychology at Argosy University and a clinical supervisor at The Wright Institute, and is past President of the Alameda County Psychological Association. She specializes in evidence-based treatment of clinically complex emotional and behavioral disorders in adolescents and adults, and also has expertise with couples and families. Dr. Frank completed post-graduate training programs in dialectical behavior therapy, prolonged exposure therapy, and cognitive behavioral analysis system of psychotherapy. She has over 20 years of experience across treatment settings.
Bipolar Advantage champions an integrated approach to depression and mania that addresses all the aspects of our lives. It embraces following the current evidence-based methods to reduce symptoms and achieve recovery as a critical and necessary first step, while providing a clear and user friendly path utilizing the same tools for accomplishing something much greater. Our course does not ask you to deny your belief in the effectiveness of medicine, therapy, meditation, nutrition, or any other tool, but to modify the goals of treatment.
"Near the end of my five years of major depression, I started the Bipolar Advantage on-line education program suite of courses - Concepts, Assessments, Assembling Tools, and Plan for Success. My knowledge of bipolar and depression conditions was expanded a thousand-fold, and this led me to come out on the other side of depression. I now have the wisdom and tools to put my depression in order and keep it in order. I have been a student of depression and bipolar for many years, and this course is the most comprehensive and useful treatment I have found on the internet or in bookstores. Tom Wootton has been blessed to put his bipolar condition in order, and now he is sharing that blessing with the rest of us."
- Patrick Day, Buffalo, MN, USA
"Tom's message has changed my life. The Bipolar IN Order program offers those who suffer bipolar and depressive conditions something much more dramatic than mere symptom suppression. It provides a pathway to powerful transformation of mental life. Working slowly and cautiously, life can become exciting, even thrilling. I speak from experience."
- Will Meecham, M.D., San Francisco, CA, USA
The Six Stages Of Growth
There are six stages of growth from bipolar disorder to Bipolar IN Order. Bipolar is a very complex condition, and this simplification provides a framework to explain important concepts. The stages are: Crisis, Managed, Recovery, Freedom, Stability, and Self-Mastery. One might expect that most will feel comfortable with concepts of the Crisis, Managed, and Recovery stages; while Freedom, Stability, and Self-Mastery may be outside of the beliefs that you are currently familiar with. These Six Stages of Growth are seen as interconnected to a diminishing or opening Window of Tolerance as Dr. Dan Siegel calls it in his book Mindsight. We refer to it as our Comfort Zone.
Bipolar Disorder - From Crisis to Recovery
The current standard of care as defined by the National Institute of Mental Health is to minimize symptoms and accept the high probability of relapse. While many tools have been developed to effectively manage bipolar disorder, there are far too many people who are still living on the edge of relapse and suffering greatly from it. Even for those who achieve a level of remission that is commonly called recovery, they live in constant fear that one sleepless night can send them into another crisis.
Trapped in a vicious cycle of Crisis, Managed, Recovery, and Relapse is the very definition of bipolar disorder and its depressive counterpart unipolar disorder. Even in Recovery, the illness is lurking behind every thought, waiting for the slightest chance to trigger a new episode. It consigns its victims to a lifetime of fear and constant vigilance in an attempt to keep the flow of energy and information at bay.
It is interesting that so many people have a different word than "recovery" for the state where we are limited to the comfort zone of no high or low symptoms. They do not call it "recovery," they call it "bored." It is one of the major reasons that they slip back into the Managed Stage and risk another Crisis. This is why the National Institute of Mental Health says, "in spite of modern, evidence-based treatment, bipolar disorder remains a highly recurrent, predominantly depressive illness."
Bipolar IN Order - From Freedom To Self-Mastery
Beyond Recovery, we enter the Freedom Stage where we begin to break free of the cycle of Crisis and Recovery. From there we graduate to Stability Stage and eventually achieve Self-Mastery. It will take slow and careful work with some set backs, but we will find ourselves comfortable and in control while experiencing increased flow of energy and information. States that previously created great disturbance and needed some form of intervention in the Managed Stage are now within our comfort zone.
Real Stability means to maintain control in an ever wider range of experience. Some of us can even achieve stability across the entire range of the bipolar condition and live an extraordinary life.
Self-Mastery is when we choose how to react to every stimulus. The stimulus can be internal or external, real or not, but the important thing is that we can make a conscious choice about how to act.
Integrated Approach to Success
In order to escape from the disordered cycle of repeating Crisis, Managed, and Recovery Stages, we need to break free from the limited view of treating our condition as a medical illness only. We must begin to see the whole picture from an integrated point of view. That means addressing the Physical, Mental, Emotional, Spiritual, Relationship, and Career/Financial aspects of our lives. It is important to recognize how the bipolar condition effects our entire life.
More Thorough and Helpful Assessments
Many assessments leave out critical information and perspectives that are needed to move from Bipolar Disorder to Bipolar IN Order. By focusing on the negatives, they often keep our perspective stuck in illness. If all states are only seen as negative, difficult, or meaningless, they can be an indication of disorder. If states can be valued for their different contributions to the whole of our experience, we are more likely to be on the path toward success. Changing the focus of the assessments will change the expectations as well as the outcomes of treatment.
Creating a Toolbox For Success
The most effective way to treat any condition is to approach it from a multifaceted perspective. You can't just adjust one element and expect the entire problem will change. What is needed is an integrated approach that treats the whole person.
We need to see all of the approaches as various tools that we can use to solve the problem. Just as a mechanic has pliers, wrenches, jacks, and diagnostic tools, we need to have all of the tools at our disposal so that we can choose the correct one at the appropriate time. Leaving any of the tools out of the toolkit only limits the options and leaves us searching for a tool when we need it the most.
Creating A Realistic Plan For Success
A business plan approach to moving from bipolar disorder to Bipolar IN Order is called a Life Plan. It may also be the difference between success or failure, but the stakes can be your very life if you do not move away from the risk of another crisis. Planning for Success addresses all aspects of your life. A good plan must have integration between the various aspects of your life, have clear and measurable goals, and have time based milestones to make sure that you are on track. Following a plan actually increases confidence that goals can be met and that change is possible.
"This course was a breath of fresh air. The assessments were truly eye-opening. They allowed me to see where I am stuck, and reminded me how to move forward. I have the freedom to be myself among like-minded people, learn about myself and others with a concept that supports my personal philosophy. Now comes the work to embrace the lifestyle! Tom is a highly effective teacher. He is quietly sincere and thoughtful with a keen sense of humor. He inspired me rather than trying to sell me."
- Cathy Bankson, Turlock, CA, USA
"For years I've been working with people that have struggled to live with the affects of bipolar disorder. Often they live in the hope that medication will cure all, or they've learned to inhibit themselves from trying new things in case they experience an extreme mood change. But I have always believed that there is another, more satisfying, way to live with bipolar, and that's why I'm really excited by what Tom and his team are doing at Bipolar Advantage. The online course is really comprehensive, with clear, interesting information which really does offer a different point of view of living with bipolar. The course can help you enhance your abilities by setting realistic goals and getting the right support when you need it, and ultimately, it will teach you to live an unbound life and not be shackled by an emotional, cognitive and behavioural life sentence that many health professionals would lead you to believe is the best you can hope for. I have no trouble recommending this course to anyone that has bipolar."
- Drew Coster, Psychotherapist, Surrey, UK.
Better Assessments for Bipolar And Depression
A quick search on the internet and you can find hundreds of assessments for depression, mania, bipolar, or other mental health issues. They supposedly help you to determine if you MIGHT be bipolar. Most of them are free. They should be paying you for wasting your time.
It takes twelve hours over the course of three weeks to complete the assessment section of our program. During the weekly live meetings, we spend another two hours (six total) in small groups or one hour one on one (three total) going over your results and helping to insure that you did the assessments properly. We need to know exactly where we are before choosing tools or making plans to improve our condition.
We don't just fill in a checklist with questions like "Do you have racing thoughts?" We find out how intensely, how well you understand what is going on, how well you function at different levels of intensity, how far outside of your comfort zone they take you, and whether you value the experience both for past occurrences and in the present.
Our assessments are designed to find out where you are on the scale from bipolar disorder to bipolar IN order. Each step of the assessment was designed to help determine exactly what action is needed to move you toward a better life. We don't just assess what is wrong with you - we find out what understanding, tools, and skills you have already developed and what you are missing.
Assessing The Environment
It is important to look at your environment and assess how conducive it is to growth and change. We take an assessment from the person with bipolar and from their family or friend. Our assessments are looking to identify strengths, areas of agreement, and support. We also want to assess what situations could cause setbacks or really need to be improved to achieve your goals. It helps everyone to understand their role and what needs to be done to create a better life for all.
Accounting For Time
A critical tool in developing skills and deciding which tools to use is an awareness of how functional or comfortable you are and for what length of time in specific states. Understanding whether you have two days or one month before your condition changes is critical to effective growth without major setbacks. A visual graph that we help you to create of different states over time effectively demonstrates these concepts.
Integrated Professional Assessments
The doctors on our Bipolar Advantage Education Team have written what their specialties do during assessments and what you should expect when you go to a doctor who practices one of the various disciplines. This is a great resource for understanding how the different specialties can work together and how their expertise can contribute to your success.
"For me, the most vital part are the meditation techniques. They have given me the ability to control my mind instead of letting it run wild. Focusing on the flow of energy is so much more direct than just watching my thoughts. The monks you got them from must be very wise to have come up with techniques that are so effective for bipolar and depression."
- Matthias Mueller, Zurich, Switzerland
Social workers and therapists, I recommend you take the Bipolar IN Order Course and recommend it to clients you deem appropriate. This course is not limited to clients with a Bipolar diagnosis. Take the course and see how it can work for you. Save time, be more effective, and enhance your clients' treatment experience.(I believe CEUs are available in many states).
- Walter Taylor M.A., Los Angeles, CA, USA
Assembling The Tools And Team For Success
If one sets out to become a plumber, an electrician, a mechanic, a dentist, or any number of skilled trades, it is necessary to get an education, assemble a toolkit, and apprentice with someone who will help perfect the use of the tools. Getting Bipolar IN Order is similar; we need to become much more educated about the condition, assemble the tools to use, and get trained on how to use them. Practice using the tools is a critical part of success.
It takes fourteen hours over the course of three weeks to complete the tools section of our program. During the weekly live meetings, we spend another two hours (six total) in small groups or one hour one on one (three total) making sure that you understand the tools and are practicing them correctly.
Tools For All Aspects of Bipolar
Our tools course helps you to assemble, practice and use the tools for physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, and career/ financial success. It also helps you to find and manage team members including family, friends, and professional help.
Most tools in the toolbox can be used in almost every stage of development. The way we use them, though, will change as we progress. We call this "tool adaptation," as the tool and our usage of it adapts to the needs of the stage we are in.
Stage Specific Tools
Each stage on the path from bipolar disorder to Bipolar IN Order has different challenges and opportunities. What tools to use and how to use them will be different at each stage from Crisis to Self-Mastery. It is important to understand the concept of stage specific tools in order to progress safely and at the best pace.
"Tom Wootton takes existing medical care and augments it to a promising new level for all patients and their loved ones. The combination of accessible information and executive level presentation is a very exciting development. His work in the field offers the most logical and exciting path to success in mental health today."
- Paul Cumming, San Diego, CA, USA
"I felt authenticated. I learned so much about how I am not alone in the world of depression. I gained a sense of clarity in terms of how to live with depression. I enjoyed every element of the workshop. Tom Wootton is completely effective, and someone who understands these states intimately. He is compassionate and has extremely clear presentation skills."
- Karen Randolph, Oakland, CA, USA
Planning To Succeed
It is important to have a backup plan in case you find yourself in crisis again, but unless you have a solid plan for success you are only planning for failure. A success plan creates a viable path from Bipolar Disorder to Bipolar IN Order and addresses your entire life; physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, and career/financial.
It takes ten hours over the course of two weeks to complete the planning section of our program. During the weekly live meetings, we spend another two hours (four total) in small groups or one hour one on one (two total) making sure that your plan is reasonable and likely to be accomplished.
It is important to consider balance as a key to success. If you are doing great in your career, but your relationships are in disrepair, this will have an effect on your mental and emotional life. Any part of your life that is not brought into balance with the others can eventually bring down the rest.
Clear and Measurable
One of the keys to any plan is to have clear and measurable goals. If your goal is not clear and measurable, you will not be able to tell if you've achieved it. We need to make our goals as clear as possible.
Setting goals for freedom, stability, and self-mastery are more difficult to describe for most people who are new to the concepts. It is important to discuss with your team what success means to you and how you will know when you have accomplished it.
Milestones should always be based on a reasonable time frame to achieve them. If we do not set a timeframe, we may never finish. On the other hand, if we set timeframes that are too short, we may feel a sense of defeat and give up on achieving our goals. Setting and achieving difficult yet achievable milestones strengthens our belief that we can accomplish our future goals.
Plans For Bipolar Disorder
The Crisis through Recovery Stage Plans follow the accepted model of symptom reduction. The goals are focused on reducing discomfort and episodes of crisis or fear. While the emphasis here is not on long term planning, the plans are very specific about getting to Recovery and preparing to begin the journey toward Bipolar IN Order.
Plans For Bipolar IN Order
The Freedom Stage and Stability Stage Plans deploy all the skills, methods, tools, and expertise possible to encourage growth and expand the Comfort Zone. In the Stability Stage we can finally look at the long term goals with very reasonable expectations of meeting them within the timeframe proposed. Relationships and Career/Financial goals come back into focus because our bipolar conditions are IN Order.