The problem is with the ego. If you do not deal with the ego, you will never get to the real cause of bipolar problems. The ego is a compulsive thinker; about 98% of the thoughts in your head come from the ego. The only way for a thought to come from you is, if you make an effort to think, like when you plan, try to solve a problem, study or create something. You should be skeptical of the thoughts that come into your head.
There are 3 basic types of egos as each will tend to be dominated by one of three types of nervous systems, motor, sensory or autonomic. When the sensory nervous system is dominate, the ego has a lot of 'mental' energy. The sensory nervous system consist of incoming stimuli like sound, light, smells, touch and taste, that have impinged upon the senses, and travel from the external peripheral nervous system bringing information and moving inward towards the central nervous system. An ego with a strong sensory nervous system is very sensitive and can be easily overwhelmed by excessive noise, light, sound, hot spicy foods, and usually has a low threshold for pain. A cat has a sensory nervous system that clearly dominate the other two, and like a cat, the sensitive ego is going to be very curious or even nosy.
The sensitive ego can be so overwhelmed that it is constantly looking ahead to protect itself, to try to avoid being overcome with apprehension or fear. Imagining what could happen, the sensitive ego tends to worry and fret about what might occur in the future. Its mantra is 'What if?' Anxiety and fear become its problem. When the sensitive ego is in control, its thoughts will fill your head with worry, anxiety or fear about what can happen in the future.
When the motor nervous system is dominate, the ego has a lot of 'physical' energy. The energy is projected outward, moving from the central nervous system to the peripheral nervous system. They like to throw, punch, kick, run, speak, express and act. They tend to have a good memory because they are pulling data out from the central nervous system, and make good spellers. When 'memories' are pulled out from the past by the ego, it can bring feelings of regret, resentment, hurt, anger, guilt or hate. It relives the harm or hurt of an emotional nature. This can get the ego fuming with anger which can overwhelm you with ideas of vengeance. Anybody who spends a lot of time with thoughts about the past, is going to have to deal with a lot of anger.
When the autonomic nervous system (the viscera or internal organs) is dominate, it provides a lot of emotional energy. The social ego prefers to be with others than to be alone. It can party all night long as compared to the sensitive ego who could be exhausted after half an hour. The social ego tends to be good with people and good at managing people. It wants the power to influence and control others.
Herding animals like cows, pigs, sheep, elephants, and so on have a dominant autonomic nervous system. Herding animals have a lot of bickering and infighting among themselves to establish a social hierarchy. In the same manner, the social egos relationship with people and the self is judged and rated along a hierarchy. The ego ranks the self and others on this vertical, status scale, as being above or below the self, rarely on the same level, as better or worst, worthy or unworthy, etc.
When you are aware of the judgmental criticisms about others or the self, welling up in the dark abyss of the social ego's mind, do not go along with these critical attacks or be influenced by these critical judgments, especially when you understand the ego's lack of maturity and ability to discern the nuances of the complexity of life and people.
Rather than being concern with fear and anger, the social ego, more than any other type tends to be on an emotional roller coaster of ups and downs and highs and lows when dealing with life and people.
When they are on the emotional 'down' side, they can be extremely passive, apathetic, helpless, or depressed. Nothing excites or motivates them. They may not want to do anything but lay about. This may lead to emotional, physical or financial poverty, where they could easily wind up on welfare. This type is most vulnerable to becoming a hobo or a homeless beggar.
Their nonchalance insulates them from future fears and past anger issues, so they can easily get stuck in a rut and stop learning or growing. Since they think their life is just fine, they're unlikely to examine or explore new, exciting or beneficial areas of life. The social ego more than any other type of ego needs you to make more of an effort to compensate for its lethargy. Your responsibility is not to control the ego's anger or fear so much, as to endeavor to improve yourself by putting a spur under the ego's saddle to develop your knowledge base, your ability to be more loving, etc.
The emotional, excited, up swing, side of the social ego, finds them displaying a superior, haughty, conceited attitude, that I'm better than you, and be snobbish, exclusive, bossy, authoritarian, domineering or tyrannical.
The social ego's pathological problems will be emotional, namely of a manic/depressive bipolar nature. When taken to the extremes, when the ego is in control of the self close to 100% of the time, the ego can go from the grandiosity of an egomania, to the misery and despair of a deep depression.
During the hot blooded manic phase, the egos are in almost total control, making all the foolish decisions by which they are so plagued. Unfortunately the seductive euphoria created by these egos, who feel superior and godlike, are so enticing, that without understanding what is happening, they gladly surrender to these feelings of elation. And therefore surrender or go along with all the ideas coming into their head from the ego.
To overcome these problems, you need to be in charge of the self instead of the ego. You do that by learning how to censor the thoughts that come into your head and realize these thoughts are coming from the ego and not you. Learn to be skeptical of your thoughts, especially those that are critical of others, the self and the present situation.