I'm inspired to help kids and adults discover their inner light, and in doing so help to better manage and reduce many of the scientifically proven negative and harmful impacts of stress.
A few years ago, I went through a personal crisis that took me from severe stress and fear, to love and happiness. Along the way, I learned and developed several tools and techniques that supported my life-changing transformation. The tools I learned throughout my personal journey helped me to be present in my body, calm in my mind and to unleash my creative spirit, essentially allowing me to discover my inner light.
I also knew these same tools could help other kids facing tough situations in their lives.
For my National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) service project, I put on a three-part play shop (workshop) over three weeks in my school to help other kids cultivate those same tools I learned, so they could also feel great in their lives. Thirty-nine middle school students participated. My first Playshop, introduced techniques on how to be present in the body. My second Playshop focused on methods to calm and still a stressed mind. The final Playshop focused on how to love yourself and unleash your spirit (by choosing who you want to be and modeling those behaviors) and it tied together body, mind, and spirit to inner light.
Shortly after the middle school playshops, my mom and I were invited to give our three-part Playshop, “Inner Light in the Dark: A Toolkit to Manage Stress and Feel Better in Life”, for the 'Arlington All In' conference. To fit our time slot we reduced our 3 hours, 3 Part Playshop to one hour. Over 75 people attended, including kids at risk living in group homes, teenagers with their parents, and the county's school board chair. I was overjoyed when my upcoming high school PTA president, the head of Argus House Boys’ Group Home, and the head of Arlington County’s teen group homes, all signed up for me to bring the “Inner Light in the Dark” Playshop to their organizations.
I accomplished something on a small scale that helps other people. I hope to serve a much larger number of people, helping them to improve their lives, by learning and adopting simple tools & techniques, that worked for me. I’ve set an ambitious goal for my service project going forward - to start and grow a positive movement to improve the lives of kids (and adults) in my school, community, state, country and eventually globally by helping each one to discover their Inner Light. When teenagers connect to the inner light inside of them, they don’t pursue detrimental & risky behaviors in their lives. I want to share the message, that teenagers can feel good without drugs, alcohol, video games, violence, sex & other risky behaviors, by connecting to the light inside of them.
My hope is that the tools and techniques that I learned to calm my mind, be present in my body, and unleash my spirit, are shared with those in need. I believe that everyone would benefit from discovering their Inner Light, and maybe I’ve taken a few Important first steps towards initiating a worldwide movement.