What is the value of your intellectual property?

I’ve always been of the opinion that intellectual property is what makes someone valuable. That crazy map of creativity and thought inside of their heads is what they bring to the table, and if you want to find the right niche within your workplace, you need to give employees a place where they feel safe to let their intellectual property flow freely throughout the company.

When it comes to me, intellectual property is my everything. This mess inside of my brain is what comes up with the genius. And I don’t say that to imply that I am a genius by any means. I say that as an implication that what I do requires creativity and forethought. It requires one to have vision and insight. It requires one to make use of a certain skill set that there are a lot of jobs in this world that’s not necessary for.

To me, the prospect of signing away my intellectual property to ‘the man’ is a scary one.

It could mean signing away rights to this blog, or anything I create on it hereafter. It could mean signing away rights to my work, to my creations, to my brainchild of development.

I’m not sure that I’m ready to do that. Or willing.

I know that different people have different opinions on the subject matter. I guess, it just scares me because I feel as though my intellectual property and my value very much go hand-in-hand. Signing that over to someone seems like giving up a piece of myself.

Common Thinking Errors – A lesson in thought from a Psychiatrist

One of the most important lessons I’ve learned from therapy is that the situations we find ourselves in don’t cause our depressed/anxious feelings – our ways of thinking about them do. Everyone goes through struggles and everyone suffers hardship in their lives. How a person responds to those struggles and hardships determines the outcome from them.

If you’re anything like me, it can be incredibly easy to jump to conclusions and imagine the worst case scenario, always. Some of us have brains that are just hard-wired to do so. That may, or may not be any fault of our own. But, if we’re ever going to tackle those feelings, we need to be aware of the errors in thinking in order to make conscious change.

The following are some common, distorted ways of thinking that often increase depression and make it harder to overcome, see past struggles and hardship.

FILTERING – Everyone’s life has some negative things. If you focus on the negative and filter out all positive or neutral things, your life will indeed seem depressing.

EMOTIONAL REASONING – Emotions are based on what we think and often not based on facts. Don’t always believe what you feel. Feelings are not facts.

OVER-INCLUSIVE – You think of one problem, then another and another, until you feel completely overwhelmed. Or you may take on the problems of family members as your own.

BLACK OR WHITE THINKING – You think only in extremes or absolutes, forgetting that most things fall in the middle and are shades of grey.

JUMPING TO CONCLUSIONS – You predict a negative outcome without adequate supporting evidence.

MIND READING – You believe that others are thinking and feeling badly about you and you react as if that’s true.

PREDICTING THE FUTURE – You think that things may turn out badly and only focus on the bad things that might happen. You convince yourself that a bad outcome is sure to happen.

CATASTROPHIZING – You imagine the worst and make things seem like a bigger deal than they are. This increases your fear and makes it harder to deal with what is really going on.

SHOULD – You make rules for yourself and others about things ‘should be’. You become angry or upset when these rules are not followed.

Thoughts go unnoticed as we automatically go through our day. This often leads to the belief that an event causes a feeling or behaviour. In fact, it is how we think about the event that causes feelings and behaviours.

In order to change your errors in thought, you first must notice these thoughts when they’re happening.

  • Slow down your thinking.
  • Consciously pay attention to your negative thoughts.
  • Don’t judge your thoughts, just observe them.

Once you’re aware of your negative thoughts, the next important step is to begin trying to change them.

  • Collect the negative thoughts in a capsule within your brain. When you’re ready to deal with them, acknowledge them for what they are and tell yourself that you’re ready to move past them.
  • Ask yourself ‘are these helpful’?
  • Replace them with more realistic and helpful thoughts.

It’s not going to be easy. But, instead of looking at something with a negative lens, try to be self-aware and put a new spin on the cycle navigating within your brain.

Personal Example:

One of the things that I struggle immensely with is rejection, it’s something I’ve spoken about in great lengths in therapy. One of the things that was brought to my attention was that, instead of believing that I’m a loser when I get rejected from an employer, instead of believing I’m unqualified, instead of believing that I’m not good enough, something I should consider is that I really have no idea why they didn’t hire me. And since I have no idea, I should stop treating it as a negative reflection of myself.

How do I spin it? Perhaps it was the wrong timing. Perhaps they had equal candidates and they flipped a coin. Perhaps they just didn’t like the tone of my voice. Whatever it is, I cannot change it. What I can do is, instead of thinking that I’m a loser, I can use the jobs I did not get as lessons learned of how to act next time, and how to know when the right opportunity has come along. I can think if it as though I’m gaining experience, not earning rejection.

How you think about something affects E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G in your life. Whether your brain is hard-wired one way or not, what are the steps that you can take to correct, or improve errors in thinking?

Be a good person.

You can be vulnerable and still be powerful. You can have a gentle heart and still be rock-solid to your core. You can be as calm as a cool breeze, but as fierce as a tiger. The measure of true strength is to embody the characteristics of the full spectrum.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, life is the messy bits. Speak your truth, love your family, care for your friends and be yourself. Your social media platforms, your blogs, your conversations with people, they don’t need to be a perfectly curated collection of beautiful and noteworthy. Be real. Be truthful. Be you. If someone’s not willing to listen to the truth, find someone else to talk to.

Being real about how the world actually works, about how life really is, that’s what I appreciate in people.

Don’t internalize the bad. Nobody needs to be walking around with that weight on their shoulders. Always speak your truth. You’ll feel sooooooo much better about life when you do.

Also, be a good person. It doesn’t take a lot. Just be a good fucking person.

I have a job interview today.

To clarify, when I speak of my anxiety, it’s because the coping mechanisms that I usually use to work through my anxiety aren’t working.

I have a job interview today. It was 95% of the reason why I was anxious last night and is 100% of the reason why I am anxious today.

On the one hand, I’m thinking ‘hey, potential job prospect, this is great!’ And ‘I really hope this isn’t like the scam I walked into, and wasted my time at, in May’.

On the other hand, I’m thinking ‘hey, this is nowhere near Calgary and I have goals and plans for my life. If I accepted a job like this, would it stray me from my goals?’

And then there’s a nagging insecurity in my brain saying ‘Don’t just think you’re going to get this job, no one else wants to hire you so why would they?’

Realistically, the only thing that I can do is go into this job interview with an open mind. If I hope for the best then I can figure the rest out after. It’s just dealing with these nagging feelings of anxiety inside that I struggle with. I haven’t quiet yet figured out how to tackle all of my triggers, so there are times when I let my fears see light.

Speaking of good news (smooth transitions only, right), my mom went to the cancer clinic today for her follow up appointment. She’s required to do follow ups ‘x’ amount of days after finishing treatment and then every six months for two years and then once a year for five years following that (just to make sure that the cancer doesn’t return). Anyways, in her follow up appointment today they told her that she’s healing remarkably well, there’s no sign of recurring cells and they’re very impressed with her health at this point.

So that’s great!

It’s a rainy, gloomy day here. I’m trying to stay positive though.

There’s a lot to be thankful for. Mainly my mom’s health. I know not everyone gets so lucky when it comes to cancer, and our family is eternally grateful.

Anxiety, hello old friend.

I’m anxious and I’m having a hard time dealing with it tonight.

I have a feeling it’s going to be a long night filled with plenty of thoughts I don’t want to be dealing with right now.

I wish I knew how to make this feeling go away. I wish life were more settled.

I should stop.

Self-esteem is a work in progress.

Lately I’ve been feeling as though my anxiety is a lot like an injury that tends to flare up when I don’t take care of myself. It’s a reminder to take consistent care of myself and to get the right kind of rest. Sometimes it’s absolutely necessary to put my metaphorical feet on the metaphorical couch.

Something that I struggle immensely with is low self-esteem. It’s something that I’ve always struggled with. For a lot of my life, I’ve put blame for that on other’s, but I’m learning through working with a therapist that I should be doing the work inside of myself to make myself feel better. It’s easy to feel anxious when you do not believe your worth is much.

Characteristics of low self-esteem:

  • Neglect to personal appearance
  • Poor eye contact
  • Dull eyes
  • Flat facial expressions
  • Drooped shoulders
  • Rare laughter or smiles
  • Neglect to personal health
  • Increased illness
  • Increased fatigue
  • Tendency to focus on others and wanting to fix them rather than their own self
  • Decreased energy
  • Decreased ambition
  • Decreased happiness
  • Decreased ability to cop with problems
  • Increased chance of addictive behaviours
  • Tendency to become involved in destructive relationships
  • Decreased ability to make and achieve goals
  • Decreased ability to stand up for yourself
  • Allows others to choose for you
  • Blaming others for problems

I don’t know about you, but I read and resonated with many of the things listed above.

The following questions are a part of the ‘Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale’. After reading the above characteristics, answer the following statements (strongly agree, agree, disagree or strongly disagree) with respect to yourself in relation to self-esteem:

  1. On a whole, I am satisfied with myself.
  2. At times, I think I am no good at all.
  3. I feel that I have a number of good qualities.
  4. I am able to do things as well as most other people.
  5. I feel I do not have much to be proud of.
  6. I certainly feel useless at times.
  7. I feel that I am a person of worth, at least on an equal plane with others.
  8. I wish I could have more respect for myself.
  9. All in all, I am inclined to feel that I am a failure.
  10. I take a positive attitude towards myself.

If you’re anything like me, you’ll notice that you can answer some of these in a positive light to your character whilst still believing very negatively of yourself.

Take one question from the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale and answer the following questions with respect to that one response:

Where did you form this belief of yourself?

__________________________________________________________

How long has this belief been with you?

__________________________________________________________

When do you notice this belief affects you most?

__________________________________________________________

Have you had experiences that challenge this belief?

__________________________________________________________

What is one thing you could do (one small step that you could take) towards changing this belief?

__________________________________________________________

Like all things in life, there is no quick fix. As much as I would like to snap my fingers and believe in myself wholeheartedly and fully, it’s going to take time. I know where my flaws lie, and I know that I need to value myself for. I don’t think I’m alone in that though. I think we could all value ourselves a little more.


I’ve been seeing a Psychiatrist in an effort to help control the massive amounts of anxiety I’ve been suffering from in 2019. My Psychiatrist provides a lot of homework for me to use as tools for self improvement. As I work on myself, I’m sharing the resources provided to me. Why? Spread the wealth, spread the health.

Your mental health and well being are the most important gifts that you can give to yourself. To anyone reading this, I encourage you to please look after yourself. Take from this post what you like and leave what you don’t.

Want to see more on mental health and self care? CLICK HERE

Mental Health Resources from a Psychiatrist

One of the things that I’ve learned working with a Psychiatrist over the past two months is that if something is wrong, I am in charge of fixing it. I don’t just get to go into her office and say ‘fix me!’ I am responsible for fixing myself. If there were only one thing she couldn’t stress to me more during our sessions it’s that ‘You get out of therapy what you put into therapy. It’s called self-healing for a reason’.

My Psychiatrist provides a lot of ‘homework’. I get a lot of handouts to take home – paperwork to fill out, not for the purpose of being graded, but more for the purpose of self-reflection. What I’ve been thinking lately is that I should share these handouts and booklets provided to me. So, that’s what I’m going to start doing. I’m making an official ‘page’ for this on my blog, and I’ll be sharing the handouts that I get from my Psychiatrist.

FYI – I’ve told her about my blog and she’s all for me sharing these resources. Her response was ‘Hey, if it can help, spread the wealth for better health’.

In the first installment of this series, I am including a list of definitions. Definitions, while they may seem like a straightforward subject, are important to read and differentiate. Often times when we think of our mental health, each of these different definitions can mesh together into one big jumbled mess. This, in a sense, can contribute to confusion and panic within our minds. So, clear definitions are integral to understanding one’s self and mental health.

Self – A person’s self is the sum of all he/she can call their own. The self includes, among other things, a system of ideas, attitudes, values and commitments. The self is a person’s total subjective environment. It is the distinctive centre of experience and significance. The self constitutes a person’s inner world as distinguished from the outer world consisting of all other people and things.

Self Concept – The mental imagine one has of oneself. A person’s opinion of himself/herself. Self concept is a mental picture that represents a person’s opinion of himself/herself. That mental picture has three aspects to it: appearance, performance and status.

Appearance: How do I look? It’s important because it is something we consider every day. Compliments or criticism affects this part of our self concept and relates to how we view our bodies, dress and personal grooming.

Performance: How am I doing? It relates to how we view our abilities, our skills, our knowledge and our sense of responsibility.

Status: How important am I? We all desire to feel respected and admired by others. It relates to how we view our importance among people (family name, wealth, education, position or social rating)

These three aspects came from how we feel rated by others. We develop our self concept by stepping back and looking at the picture of ourselves. Our memories that have accumulated mostly in childhood when we are impressionable, form the network for the tapestry of our self concept.

Self Respect – Regard for one’s own standing or position. The degree of honour one shows oneself. Values that you judge yourself by. The degree to which you meet the standards you have for yourself, give you your sense of self respect.

Self Confidence – Belief in oneself and in one’s powers and abilities. That which allows us to make choices, to think, to judge, to know and come to decisions. Confidence is built by the successes we experience in life. Small successes built upon smaller successes, lead to a graduated building of confidence. It is important to remember these small successes and forget the failures. We tend to remember the failures and destroy our self confidence by putting ourselves down with them.

Self Acceptance – Being satisfied with one’s attitude and qualities while being aware of one’s limitations and potentials.

Acknowledgement that this is who I am, what I was born with and what I look like. Accepting what I can’t change, change what I can and do what I have to do to be the best that is within me.

Self Esteem – A confidence and satisfaction in oneself. Personal comepetence and personal worth. Self esteem = Self confidence + Self respect. A person with high self esteem is fundamentally satisfied with the type of person they are yet they may acknowledge their faults while hoping to overcome them.

Self Efficacy – People’s beliefs about their capabilities to produce designated levels of performance that exercise influence over events that affect their lives.

Do your definitions match, or differ from what’s listed? Are you surprised at any of these definitions? Also, what aspects of yourself fit into each of these definitions? Reflection as to how these definitions are represented within you can help to clarifying where your issues lie and where your growth is needed.