I'm Matt, creative, writer and illustrator of the book "Tell Your Negative Thoughts to STFU". This is an anxiety blog where you'll find my ramblings on mental health, with various book recommendations and some chill music thrown in.
Octopuses have been studied extensively for their intelligence. They are said to have the smarts of a golden retriever, which is pretty impressive.
In studies scientists have found that individual octopuses display different personalities. Some octopuses were shier than others (!) Even more interesting – the personality traits seem to be inherited by their offspring.
It’s not hard then to imagine that humans inherit certain personality traits from their parents. And if these traits include a propensity for introspection, or dwelling on their situation, someone’s genealogy could affect certain psychological traits, and aspects of their mental health.
The other day I was sat around sketching. In truth, my mind doesn’t deal with ‘downtime’ very well, and being in lockdown for covid-19 (what week is it now? 10?) has given me lots of it… especially because I’m on furlough. To use another seafaring metaphor, I’m like a rudderless boat adrift in an ocean of time.
Anyway, I started sketching this submarine, probably because I’ve been playing way too much Subnautica on the playstation (goodness how I love that game). And it came to me that going into counselling is scary, in the way that thalassophobia is scary.
You just don’t know what you are going to be confronted by in the murky depths of your mind, and that’s why it’s confronting to enter the deep waters of counselling.
You see your brain doesn’t like being uncomfortable, and dealing with things it deems scary. So it worries, about meeting them again.
But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try counselling. Like with all things, you just have to get to know what’s under there and then it doesn’t seem so scary after all.
*starts up the playstation for a game of Subnautica*
When I started writing “Tell Your Negative Thoughts to Shut The F*ck Up” it felt exciting, because I knew it was the right thing to do. There are many serious books out there about anxiety, but sometimes the best way to communicate things is to tap into the not-so-serious. Be a bit more human.
So I’m proud to say that over 100 copies of the book are currently flying their way to the book’s Kickstarter backers all over the world – from New Zealand to Malaysia, Italy to America.
Some backers opted in for their own illustration based on a negative thought.
So in the interests of showing other sufferers that they might not be alone in their thoughts, I thought I’d share some (no names included, of course).