Updated: Apr 14
I want you to know that by opening these daily (email) care packets that have been assembled with lots of love and care, that you are part of a huge community of teens and adults who are currently part of the Natural Highs Academy.
Some students use the Natural Highs Academy as one of their online classes to fulfill high school credit during a time when schools are closed. The reason that the daily emails contain different elements - videos, worksheets, journal & art prompts, etc. - is that different learning styles work for different people and we want to make sure that everyone finds a tidbit that inspires them.
Other people use the Natural Highs Academy as their daily mental health and/or recovery support because their typical support systems might not be available right now. Some adults who are participating in the Natural Highs Academy are part of the Justice System and are encouraged to stay connected to their sobriety goals and healthy life skill goals by their probation officers. So just wanted to make sure that you know how diverse and wonderful the community of the Natural Highs Academy is!
If you get these daily emails and don't need the support, please think of someone in your life who might experience depression, loneliness, or isolation right now - maybe someone in your neighborhood, a family member, colleague, or acquaintance. Please send these (email) care packets on to them for some inspiration or structure. Natural Highs is a very small nonprofit with very limited resources and you would help our vision for a community of support so much if you help us get these resources to people they were intended to help, both teens and adults. Imagine we could start a "Community Buddy System" where we watch out for each other - during these times and beyond!
I want to return to the TED Talk "How to make Stress your Friend" by Kelly McGonigal.
If you haven't seen it, here it is again. Today, please pay attention to the second part of the talk starting at minute 7:14. She is talking about the neurotransmitter OXYTOCIN.
Oxytocin is very well known as the bonding and "cuddle" hormone. It is much less known as a stress hormone. Please check out what the amazing potential is that OXYTOCIN holds for all of us during these challenging times.
How would you like to use the power of OXYTOCIN during these challenging times? Whatever you do under stress, your brain will connect to or bond with it quicker. This is the reason why people get addicted quicker to any drug or habit when it gets used under stress. But on the positive side that also means that anything positive you do under stress or in challenging times will turn into a positive habit quicker. So now in a stressful time like this is the time to start new habits! What are positive habits you would like to start or strengthen now? I attached a beautiful "Habit Tracker" Worksheet for you. When we track our habits, our brain releases DOPAMINE because we feel accomplished. So using a "Habit Tracker", especially if you hang it up where you see it frequently, will help you feel motivated to stay with the new habit and every time you mark it, your brain will release Dopamine. I also attached an example for you to see how it could look like. Feel free to get creative, make it colorful and add whatever personal touches you like. TODAY'S ACTIVITIES: - Look at the TED Talk starting at minute 7:14 - Print out the attached "Habit Tracker" and write down what habits you want to start or strengthen. - Feel free to take a picture of your Habit Tracker after you used it for a while and send it to : firstname.lastname@example.org or 303.859.5778. We will send the best ideas out on email to inspire others.
TODAY'S MEETINGS for TEENS:
Relapse Prevention with Mila Friday, April 10, 2:00 – 3:00pm This is a support group for anyone who would like to get some ideas on how to stay clean & sober during challenging times. This TEEN group is non-judgmental and all teens from all paths of recovery or curiosity are welcome. https://zoom.us/j/779043719 Philosophy Circle with TARA Friday, April 10⋅4:00 – 5:00pm Weekly on Friday https://us04web.zoom.us/j/887849899 Join Tara for a weekly PHILOSOPHY CIRCLE on Friday afternoon. End your week on an inspiring note by discussing existential questions, quotes and the depth of life. Queer Open Mic by Queer Asterisk (for people all ages) Friday, April 10⋅6:00 – 8:00pm https://zoom.us/j/991257821 Join this Queer Open Mic if you want to share your song, music, art or if you just want to listen
Also, feel free to check out the Natural Highs Google CALENDAR with daily Natural Highs activities for TEENS:
https://calendar.google.com/calendar/embed?src=83gi6m9jfn9j2noao4gac5adlk%40group.calendar.google.com&ctz=America%2FDenver If you have joined the Natural Highs Academy after March 30, you can find all the previous exercises and worksheets that you might have missed on: & Materials
Feel free to share any of these resources with anyone - teen or adult - who you think might benefit from daily inspiration and structure during these times. I so look forward to have you be part of the Natural High https://www.naturalhighs.org/post/welcome-to-the-natural-highs-academy Want more Natural Highs Resources? Now, everything in the Natural Highs Store is available for FREE with the Coupon: "coronarelief": Community. We can support each other to make the best of these times Stay strong & inspired ❤️ Avani