A Bright View of Schizoaffective Disorder

– Bipolar or Manic-Depressive Type

It is most delightful to see more and more people coming out of the closet with their schizophrenia, with manic depression – nowadays called bipolar disorder, or with a similar disorder such as schizoaffective disorder. In my book I write about my experience with schizoaffective disorder, which I perceive as a mixture of schizophrenia and manic depression. There are many books about mental illness written by authors first hand. My contribution to the subject is the bright approach I chose in order to make mental illness more casual and less frightening. Next to my optimistic style of writing, there are also humorous illustrations by Leon Zuodar, making the whole trouble with mental illness more bearable.

Face the facts, gather information, consult your doctors, and take action. Join me in my dream of empowering mental health consumers to have control over their illness. I wish you a smooth ride and hope to inspire you with my book like Louise Hay and Phyllis Krystal inspired me with theirs.

A FREE sample! (4.5 MB)
Buy on Amazon

Buy on Amazon

WARNING: You should always consult your psychiatrist before trying any of the exercises mentioned in the book.


PRAISE FOR Balancing the Beast

A five-star-review for my book by a psychiatrist from USA (July 2013):

Balancing the Beast: A Bright View of Schizoaffective Disorder is a wonderful book which does a great job explaining schizoaffective disorder. It is very well written and easy to read. It covers the differential diagnosis and various treatment options. This is a great book for both psychiatrists and their patients. I give it a 5 star Excellent rating. – By Gregg L. Friedman MD, Psychiatrist , Hallandale Beach, FL

Joe Kraynak published Smole’s Bipolar Bio in a new edition of his Bipolar Disorder for Dummies in autumn of 2015! Read it here.

You can also read Kraynak‘s review of Balancing the Beast:

Smole provides keen insight into the experience of a severe mental breakdown, important reminders about taking enough time and investing enough focus on recovery, and helpful information on the treatments, therapies, self-help techniques, and supports that she has tried over the course of her recovery and is currently practicing to maintain her mental health and well-being.
People with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other mental illnesses and their loved ones are likely to benefit from Smole’s description of the series of breakdowns she experienced on the road to accepting the fact that she has a mental illness. She describes the fear and denial she had to overcome. Her over 11 years of denial seem inconceivable, but when you read about her journey, it seems perfectly understandable why the diagnosis can be so difficult to accept.
What struck me most about Smole’s journey is how hard she worked at her recovery, and this is true for many who struggle with mental illness. It is almost like a full-time or at least a half-time job to keep appointments with doctors and therapists, research the illness and different medication and treatment options, keep a log of moods and medication changes, engage in therapy and self-help strategies, and make lifestyle adjustments to remove stressors and triggers.
Smole also reminds us that recovery doesn’t necessarily mean a return to life as it was before diagnosis. Recovery can be a rebirth, a transformation to a new and better life. Such a hopeful message is always welcome.
Joe Kraynak, a co-author of Bipolar Disorder for Dummies; see PsychCentral.

“Mental issues lead to having to approach happiness in a new direction. “Balancing the Beast: A Bright View of Schizoaffective Disorder” is a guide from Helena Smole aimed at those coping with the titular disorder and struggling to control it all. With humor and determination, Smole presents simple wisdom of having to deal with your life, and overcoming it all, while not blaming yourself. “Balancing the Beast” is a useful read that is very much worth considering for those faced with Schizoaffective disorder.” Michael Dunford, Midwest Book Review

“The author definitely decided to switch her destiny to an optimistic mode and is more than willing to motivate other mental health consumers as well.” – New York Times Best-Selling Author Peggy McColl

“While Bipolar Disorder for Dummies is an encyclopedia of bipolar disorder, Helena Smole’s book is a first-person story of a successful medical case.”Professor Rok Tavčar, MD, PhD, Psychiatrist, Head of the Rehabilitation Department, Psychiatric Clinic of Ljubljana

“Regarding your book, the following things appealed to me:
– the sincere personal confession, which at the same time does not reveal too much;
– its humor and warmth;
– the clarity and wisdom with which you evaluate your experience of mental illness;
– the very balanced perspective on medication and other forms of treatment;
– how much work and persistence is needed to bring about change!
You show clearly that just reading self-help books without any effort from oneself is not enough;
– I also liked how you described your relationship with your psychiatrist (I agree with your definition of a “winning combination”);
– the awareness of what a blessing it is to have a good intimate relationship, like the one you have with your husband;
– while reading the book, I was wishing that my patients would read it as well;
– it was inspiring also for me personally, perhaps above all due to its attitude that everything, no matter how difficult, can turn out for the better;
– congratulations on your courage!”
Alenka Helena Petek, MD, Psychiatrist

“In my opinion, the book can help many people find a way to move forward.”Klelija Hrovatič, MD, Psychiatrist

Many of my patients with mental illness often have difficulties with themselves. It is to them in particular that I would strongly recommend this book. It will help them to accept themselves, to face their illness, and to more easily live with it. The book contains a great amount of useful advice that can open up different possibilities for anyone. In addition, it is written in a very sincere manner, with a wealth of personal experience and invested effort. I would recommend this book to anyone who is bothered by chronic illness or find themselves at the crossroads of life. Inspiring!Lejla Doberšek, MD, specialist in family medicine


“When I began to read the book I just couldn’t stop! The English would say: “I am impressed.” It is excellent. In a very beautiful, open, and simple manner, the author describes the illness and its problems, in a way that anyone could understand. What it does so wonderfully is show a method by means of which one can overcome such an illness. It is quite useful for anyone who finds themselves so afflicted. But the book is also perfect for those who are not afflicted by this or related illnesses. Discovering one’s soul, one’s inner essence, character, and interaction with the environment, as dealt with by Helena Smole, should be attempted by every one of us. As such, her book can serve as a humble instructional manual for us all.”Zvonka Labernik, nutritionist and youth counselor

A FREE sample! (4.5 MB)
Buy on Amazon

Buy on Amazon

WARNING: You should always consult your psychiatrist before trying any of the exercises mentioned in the book.

One Response to “ “BALANCING THE BEAST”

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