The Island Alien

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Unhelpful Thinking Styles


I have this worksheet stuck up on my fridge and I thought I’d share this with you all, since it helps me to check myself throughout the day.

It’s called the “Unhelpful Thinking Styles / Cognitive Distortions” worksheet. Continue reading



Some people just aren’t going to have success stories, get over it.

I’m sure you’ve heard mental illness success stories. I mean, who hasn’t? Someone overcame severe depression, wrote an account of it, and we’re all here feeling happy for them, right? Someone speaks out on how terrible anxiety is, and we all feel sympathetic towards them, right? And that’s all well and good, but I wanna talk about something else today. I wanna talk about the people still struggling through their illnesses. The people like me and so many others who have to hear things like,

“You’ll get over it! I was reading about this woman who struggled for years but she’s fine now!”

“Why don’t you try this medication I’ve heard of? It worked for this guy I know!”

“You should get out more and meet people, or even meditate or exercise! I’ve heard that works.”

“You shouldn’t be on medication; you need to do cognitive therapy. That’s way better.”

Listen folks, none of these things are tried and true. None of these ‘solutions’ are guaranteed to work for every single person dealing with mental illness. And please don’t push someone else’s success story in my face.

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Dear Younger Me Series

Dear 20 year old me,

You are so tough. I wish I could be as tough as you are. Somewhere along the line I think I lost some of that raw nerve you had. I mean it’s not all bad, don’t worry. I’m pretty sure you’d think I look cool. I still have wildly coloured hair. I have 7 more tattoos, and a couple more piercings. Yeah, I know, totally rad. Job wise? Eh, well. I’m looking I guess. I was going alright there for a bit, you know. It was pretty okay. But I think I’m taking a break and going back to trying to “be happy”. I’m sure you remember what we used to want to do in life. I’m trying to realize those dreams once more. So I’m back to the drawing board. Literally. I’m drawing again, can you believe it?! And I’m painting, crafting and sewing. But, oh no. Please don’t be upset. I barely sing anymore. And I definitely don’t perform anywhere. I haven’t given up! I’m just….waiting. I wanna finally make my own stuff, like you wanted.
There are things about you I wish I still had. How are you so fearless? I have terrible anxiety every single day. Some days, I can’t even leave the house because of it. I wish I could figure out how you do it. You’re the strongest person I know. I think about the things you go through and know that I wouldn’t be able to do it myself. You are so funny and charismatic. But I wish I could tell you that you don’t have to hide everything like you do. You don’t have to mask all the bad stuff. There are people in your life who genuinely care about you. Don’t be so guarded. I know why you do it, and I know you feel you have to, but your true friends will help you and remain by your side. They’re still here. They’re proud of you. And so am I. I am so proud of you.

I love you,
25 year old you.

I’m going to be doing an entire series of these, to various ages. Stay tuned.
Also, I invite you to join me!



You know, I truly believe this is a beautiful country I live in. I really do appreciate how lovely our flora and fauna is. We have beautiful beaches, forests, waterfalls, rivers, and other wonderful natural sights. I wish I could say that that’s enough to make me love this place. What ruins it for me, is the people. The government, the entire society, and what has become the modern culture.  Rampant murder, corruption, sexism, racism, homophobia, stigma and discrimination of mental health and its related issues, (to name a few things). I’m not saying that every other country is perfect. I’m just saying there’s nothing to be patriotic about. I wish I could enjoy our beaches and waterfalls, but everything is always covered in disgusting litter. I wish the citizens would help each other, but the segregation is ridiculous. Continue reading

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On content and collecting

We live in an age of hoarders. We all collect things; whether it’s thoughts, pictures, memes, or whatever else. It might not be tangible, and it might not be useful, but here we are making Pinterest boards and Facebook albums and new Tumblr side blogs for our obsessions. We just need spaces to pool together everything we like.
Why is it that we are so involved in piecing together little things that fit into a certain idea we have? Are we really going to attempt half of those recipes we pin? Or remember any of those ‘self help’ quotes we reblog? Is it just a constant need for content?
Because I can understand that. As a chronic content-hunter, I understand. I am very familiar with flipping between the same 3 apps, refreshing them over and over, just waiting for someone to post something new. Why do I care so much? I just need to be stimulated. Constantly. All the time.

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Trigger Warning: This post discusses abuse and mental illness, and self-harm.

Today I am celebrating my 4 year anniversary of being kicked out of my parents’ house. I usually don’t say that to people, though. I usually say, “Today is the anniversary of me leaving home and living on my own!” and that’s met with many light-hearted congratulations. But it really doesn’t reflect on what I feel about the day. What I wish I could say is, “Today is the anniversary of me getting out of a very prolonged, violently abusive relationship with my father, and an equally long mentally and emotionally abusive relationship with my mother. It’s the day I legitimately almost died, and proceeded to spend a lot of time in and out of police stations, hospitals and was the beginning of many therapy meetings.” And what I wish people would say to me is, “I’m proud of you. I’m glad you’re still here.”
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Have a cookie!

Living with depression, every day is hard. Everything is a task to get through. Even on the days where I feel like I’ve done so much, and I got through so much, it always ends with me feeling like I’ve failed somewhere. On the days where I got up early, I did laundry and dishes, I cleaned the bathroom and I even ate on time, I still end up feeling like just maybe I could’ve done something differently. More efficiently. Better. Faster. I wonder if I would think differently of myself if I didn’t have depression. Would I still think I’m a screw up? Would I be more confident? And yeah, of course I would think differently. Because that’s what everyone says. That’s what the studies prove. And even though I know that, I still can’t picture it. I can’t picture a different life. Because that’s what depression is. It’s not aiming for a life without depression, and sitting around waiting for it to go away. It’s aiming for a life without depression, but understanding that that might not happen, so it’s probably better to learn to function with it.
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