On the 25th June we concluded the workshop “ The Heroic Journey”. What’s this journey about? It’s especially dedicated to kids who are going through adolescence to adulthood. It’s a road where they will become their own heroes. How can someone become his own hero? Is it worth it?
We started the journey on February 2016 with a group of teens from 13 years old to 15 years old. The first contact we had was getting to know each other. We did it through fun activities where shame disappeared and joy prevailed. We became giraffes, palm trees and elephants, we played football and we established a relationship with everyone. We have been able to learn a lot of each other.
The introduction to the workshop was a big success. They were willing to start this journey all together.
A passport was given to all of them. We would stamp it along the way when they succeeded on a challenge. It made them realize which challenges they were able to accomplish. They also had enough space to write their personal experiences on it.
Next day we began to discover the heroic journeys of imaginary characters and also of important people in their lives as their parents, uncles, aunts, and professors. Relating these journeys with different cultures that use a rite of passage with children to become adults they comprehended what adolescents from other cultures have to go through to become adults. We created our own tribe and our own rituals.
Along this journey adolescents realized who are they allies and who don’t. They learned to detect which people are harmful and which aren’t. They will recognize the ones that support and help them to be a better person.
They achieved teamwork by joining their abilities to overcome the obstacles they encounter (or the ones we put them) for getting to the finishing line with victory.
They remembered childhood stories and objects that they could talk about. At the end they created a ritual for letting go this childhood memories to be able to continue into adulthood. It was a very exciting session. Happiness, sadness, sorrow and calmness appeared in most of the teenagers. They were touched and felt vulnerable. It was difficult to say goodbye to their past and to step forward to their future. At the end they did it. They felt proud of themselves for taking this step forward.
Physical sensations, emotions and their expression were a constant job through out the sessions. Being able to understand what type of personality each one has, being aware of the reactions and emotions they have thanks to their personality, helped increase their empathy. Since then the group relationships were modified and they were loose being themselves.
Adolescents had the opportunity to know themselves, therefore their self-esteem raised through out the workshop. Acceptance of yourself is very important. If you don’t accept yourself, why will other accept you?
During adolescence peer acceptance is very important. It’s for what they fight for every day, it’s the reason why the drift apart their parents. This distance they establish it’s necessary for their personal growth. They need to experience the feeling of having a supportive person outside the family. Through this they will learn in whom to trust. As all human beings they will make mistakes. In the workshop they were able to detect their mistakes and to find a solution to them.
The most significant thing that happened to the adolescents was the fact of being conscious not just of what they dislike about themselves, but accepting the qualities and abilities they have. They discovered new ways to use them when difficulties are present.
Adolescents have created an experience full of love. I have been able to learn a lot about them and the necessity they have for having a safe space where they can express their difficulties, their internal fights, their anxieties and reprimands. It’s been one of the most beautiful works I have lived with adolescents. I have entered their world. It helped me to understand the importance of this vital moment and how beautiful it can be.
Finally each one of the adolescents made a rite of passage to become his OWN HEROE. They told us what this journey has changed in them and how they will use this for their next journey. Today they are internally stronger and they are the heroes of their own lives.