A Recap of the GENthusiast Society Salon: Self-Care Panel

Contributed by: Jordan Watts, GEN Development Intern


GENthusiast Society, a giving society and shared interest group for supporters of GEN, has launched their 180 for 180 campaign. 180 for 180 aims to bring the total number of GENthusiasts to 180 and all new member fees will support GEN’s 180 program, which works with girls involved with or at risk of becoming involved with the juvenile justice system. Learn more about our recent Self-Care Salon, an event typical of GENthusiast Society which puts on many events focused on building community, enhancing empowerment, and honing leadership and advocacy skills among its members.


I had the opportunity to sit in on a GENthusiast Society event and I had a blast! Last Wednesday I attended the Self-Care Salon at CRAFT, an adult arts and crafts space, which featured snacks, drinks and a panel of four experts of self-care. These women talked about what it is like to live in an era that never shuts down.


The four panelists, Melanie Holst-Collins of Grow Your Lovespace, Amanda McPherson, a life coach, Claire Siegel of Snap Kitchen and Lisa Skalla, a social worker and therapist, all explained ways they have found peace in their lives, even when their days are long and busy. Each panelist contributed information from their career that has helped them cope with the pressures of daily life. During this discussion I learned three major lessons that have already helped rid my life of stressors.


First I learned that communication is key. If you keep all your feelings bottled up and never tell people the way they are making you feel, then you will constantly be overcome with stress, anger, and anxiety. Explaining to people exactly what you need from them to make you comfortable and asking them what they need in return can set up important boundaries in relationships. Constantly letting others drain your energy is toxic and unhealthy.


Next, I learned that it really is okay to logout of social media. Even though in today’s society mass media is part of every aspect of most people’s lives, it doesn’t mean that you have to constantly check your newsfeeds, emails, text messages, etc. When the work day ends, so do work related communications. Also, during downtime, only spend a set amount of time on social media. Spending too much time looking at the digital screen can add to stress and bring unneeded negativity into your life.


Lastly, I learned that recognizing your own needs is extremely important. Every panelist agreed that taking a moment to check in with yourself when you are feeling stressed can give you time to think about what you really want and need in that moment, which can quickly reduce stress. There are many ways to do these self-evaluations, whether it be just relaxing for a few minutes, working on slow, deep breathing, or going into full-blown meditation mode. When you can assess how you’re feeling and what you can change to make yourself feel better, it is more easy to navigate through your daily life.


It is so easy for people to become overworked and overextended in today’s society. With these few tips from the wonderful self-care panelists you can cut back on the stress and live a more full and relaxed life. Remember that taking care of your body and mind always leads to being a healthier and happier person.



Felicia Gonzalez