So, here is a list of nonmedical things that keep me "on the ground" when manic and "above ground" when depressed:
1. Solitaire: I discovered this one after I spent a whole day playing, stopped playing, and started feeling manic. Something about solitaire is very soothing...when I'm really manic I play three games in a row and feel much better. I never win when I'm manic, which frustrates me, but we can't have everything.
2. My friend "John": before I came home early from my class trip to Israel, there was a period of two or three days when I was suicidally depressed every night. And every night I would go find "John", who held me and soothed me and helped me find a purpose for which to live. Every. Single. Night. He also managed not to get angry when I, uncontrollably raging, grabbed his arm and spilled his iced coffee. And every time I asked if he was OK, he told me it wasn't about him and to just focus on me right now. Need I say more?
3. "Lucy", "John's" sister. Their entire family is incredibly supportive, so when I needed someone to turn to while "John" is still in Israel, "Lucy" was an obvious choice. She is loving and sweet and strong and reassuring...everything I need right now.
4. Cabbage Patch Kids: OK, this might sound a little weird, but I collect cabbage patch kids, and I have on and off for going on five years now. My cabbage patch kids are something to cuddle and hold onto when I'm feeling my worst; they give me something to focus on other than my disorder.
5. Writing: I write a lot of everything: poetry, stories, essays. Even when I don't write anything down, I am constantly "writing" beginnings, middles, or endings in my head. This has saved my sanity (in the colloquial use of phrase) many a time.
So that's it! That's how I keep myself feeling my best and not focused on Bipolar Disorder.