Self esteem is something that every person battles at one point. I personally have had very hard times in my life due to self esteem and bullying, so I thought I would use my title for good and hold a Self Esteem Workshop at my primary school.
I worked with students in grades 7-8, and first talked to them about the truth of peer pressure. Because peer pressure is not what I expected going into high school, it is not a group of people sitting around telling you you should try something. That is easy to turn down, and that is not what it is. Peer pressure comes from your friends, and it is not your friends saying, `you have to do it`, its your friends saying ,`its okay if you don`t, see you later.`Your friends leave you behind to go do whatever it is they are doing, and no one wants to be left alone. But you have to believe in yourself enough to know that you don`t have to do whatever it is they want you to do. Its okay if you do not. Its better if you do not.
And then I started with our sort-of-game. I gave everyone in the room a brightly coloured piece of paper, and explained what they were to do. They were to write on the sheet something that they really liked about the person to the right of them. It could be something they always wanted, or something that the person is good at. Just something nice to remember.
The point of this was to slightly derail the media`s work on the kids. The media tells us all the time we are not allowed to be proud of ourselves. It tells us that if we say we like how we look we`re full of ourselves, is tells us if we are proud of what we`ve accomplished we are putting other people down. This way, each person in the room had a paper written about them, saying what they should be proud of. something that lots of people wished they had.
I then took those sheets of paper and read them aloud to the class. There was laughter, smiles, and a lot of talking, and I am proud to say that every person in that classroom left knowing something good about themselves.
You can find more photos from the event at www.facebook.com/missteenmarkham2012