I see that you’re the founder of a widespread non-profit called Leading Learners. Could you tell us a little about the organization?
Absolutely. Leading Learners is a global student-led Non-Profit Organization for providing support during students’ academic years. Through the Leading Learners platform, we provide completely free, updated, and accessible resources to students of all ages and backgrounds with a special focus on youth and high school students. Our accumulative reach is over 100,000 students, globally, through our platform. I think the best thing about students’ experiences through the platform is that they consider Leading Learners a ‘one-stop shop’ for every kind of resource they may need to support their learning —from financial aid, subject resources, to self-discovery courses.
How do you manage your own mental health? What self-care practices would you recommend?
I find time blocking does the trick, as I know whether or not I am being considerate of my mental wellbeing, and where I may be overworking myself. I especially enjoy taking 20 minutes to 2 full hours on self-care practices. Oftentimes, that is self-awareness through journaling and reflection.
Can you tell us about one of your most stressful experiences? How did you manage through it?
One of my most stressful experiences was the final exam season of 10th grade. In this time, teacher’s expect your career plan to be sorted, you have quadratics to solve on-end, and your own expectations are at an all-time high. I was able to manage my stress during that time by prioritizing the most important work first, and focusing on the positive outcome ahead.
What’s your favorite thing about yourself? How about your least favorite?
I like that I am an A-type person. To some, that can seem like you are always head-first and working, but I think that being an A-type person is someone who finds an area in their life they wish to improve, and with determination, take the necessary steps in order to get there.
Would you say you’re more of an introvert or an extrovert? What qualities of yours detect this?
I would honestly say I am in-between. I believe it’s called an ambivert; when you have both tendencies. When it comes to work (in and outside of school), I really hone in, enjoy the process, and try my very best. But as soon as I have free time, my friends and I will certainly grab a coffee and reflect on our individual progresses in life.
What makes you the happiest and what matters the most to you?
It makes me happiest when bridges are built, in an attempt to close seeping barriers. I believe equitable and accessible solutions for underprivileged populations are important. When we see an issue, I think we should not simply observe what is at the surface. I find it important to take the time to analyze, find perspective, to draw equal and equitable solutions for as many people as possible. Recognition of barriers and action towards easing them matters to me, personally.
Is there something you’ve dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven’t you done it yet?
I find that the best life is best to live a life with no regrets. I tend to underrate myself, so currently there is nothing I ‘wish’ I could have done. I would recommend to anyone looking for the same to be able to do this by consistently trying to achieve the ‘best’ version of yourself, for yourself.
How has the pandemic affected you mentally?
I found, in a sense, it had a positive effect. To some students I’ve talked to during these months, this period could be seen as more ‘downtime’ and an opportunity to work on something you had been putting off. I resonate with that most. I was able to work on speaking opportunities I hadn’t gotten to early.
What does mental health mean to YOU?
Mental health is the state of your sense of being. To me, building the bridge from mental health to mental wellness means finding the state you feel most comfortable in.
Is there anything else you would like Revive’s audience to know?
To any students reading, I would say to find and cherish your support system. It is certainly what keeps a strong drive in anyone’s life, and will empower you to find your own ‘why’ and navigate which steps for action you wish to take.