Please read below to find out about who I am fundraising for and why.
Lynzy here! I have been thinking a lot recently about anxiety and the effects this has on individuals and the people in their lives; I think about this rather a lot actually and more so since I have been afforded the very special opportunity to be able to work with six incredibly inspirational young women who are continually overcoming challenges their mental health throws their way each day. We call our time that we spend together each week The Go Project.
I currently work with the 16+ Learning Choices team within education and, with their backing, have been able to create a short programme with my colleague in CLD geared towards the needs of young people experiencing issues with anxiety and anxiety disorders. The opportunity came up to run this programme again when my colleague and I received feedback from the six young women we targeted saying that they would like to challenge themselves by being a part of it!
Here is a copy of the programme for this time around so you can see what we are getting up to and who are friends are that will be visiting us to provide some input!
As you can see, we have quite a lot to cover in our weekly, three-hour sessions and so far, it has been brilliant because each of our participants have done everything they possibly can to push themselves through what has been quite a difficult topic to pick apart. On top of this, we are also delving into the more general complexities of being a young person in today's world as this, too, can have a significant impact on emotional well-being.
As heavy as it can be, we are all there to support one another through it. We are currently going into week four of our programme and there have already been some huge leaps forward made. Here are some examples of the work we have been doing together. Members of our group have granted permission to share these images of their flip chart exercises; one can clearly see the depths our young people are going to in order to shift their paradigms and move forward with their lives. With the commitment to this that has been shown, it is really no doubt that they are all going to find their own success in life!
During Week One of our programme we hit the subject head on looking at what anxiety meant to us. We found that it can be hidden well; each said they had no idea others on the programme were suffering as much as they were. There was a huge sense of relief!
We found a number of commonalities from negative thinking traps to the physical symptoms that can occur as a result of feeling severely anxious. Everybody did so well for this being our first session and it has given us a brilliant platform for the rest of the programme.
On Week Two we invited a Primary Mental Health Worker to come and visit us; this is also when we started to focus on having coffee, tea and donuts on hand as we were picking up on some sensitive stuff from our first week. We learned about Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and how we can apply the model shown to pretty much any scenario in life in order to overcome it; it was so useful! The young people who did this piece of work chose 'social situations' as the situation they wanted to overcome and looked at what their feelings, thinking, behaviour and physical symptoms could be. We all found out that if we were to change only one of these points our level of stress and anxiety would decrease allow us to be more in control.
Week Three is our most recent session and we were delighted to have one of our colleagues come in to deliver a session on the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. I am happy to say I have this book on my shelf at home; it is awesome! A big focus of this session was the circles of 'control' and 'no control'. We were able to identify examples of the things in our lives we can and cannot change in order to apply this to situations where we are spending inordinate amounts of time worrying. This session was also about paying attention to our freedom of choice in any situation and taking the opportunity to alter our own state in order to make a positive change for ourselves.
So . . . how does this tie in with the West Highland Way you may ask? I will be walking an average of fourteen miles per day with a backpack and tent across one of the world's most famous hikes. I will be battling against exercise, camping, midges and probably pain to cover 100 miles. This is completely out of my comfort zone for almost all of the reasons there could be!
This group of amazing young women have inspired me and are also teaching me a great deal too. Each have their own reasons as to why they come along to the sessions every week and they are sharing those reasons no matter how hard it gets, how bad it may feel and who is there to see it. I have never seen so much courage, determination and humility in my years working in this field and I feel compelled to do something for them in return for the amazing steps they have taken; I highly respect them and want to show that I, too, am prepared to do something challenging and keep going no matter how hard it may become.
The group are in a major transition period in life where stepping onto the first rung of their career ladder is their next move; if I can raise funds that they can access to help them with funding course fees, work experience equipment, driving lessons, training . . . whatever and wherever it is, it will go a very long way in helping them to realise their goals and aspirations. I would be eternally grateful for your support to be better able to support them; they deserve it so very much. Thank you for reading!
If you would like to support me by making a donation please click the button below; you will be taken to the Ragged Boot Records deposit box! A portion of the transactions made via credit or debit card will be collected by PayPal due to the fee criteria; to find out more click here.
Lynzy & Vivienne
The Coaltown Daisies
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