Did you know that girls stop dreaming at the age of seven, whereas boys continue to dream all the way through adulthood? Sadly, the act of no longer seeing yourself in a dream or being able to live your dream is one of the triggers of hopelessness that could result in suicide attempts.
In this episode, Dr. Kennedy Garcia talks about her efforts to bridge this gender dream gap through her own nonprofit organization called The Dream Academy, which aims to teach girls leadership skills and provide them with resources to live their dreams. Her advocacy work is personal as she became a suicide loss survivor 15 years ago and decided to become an advocate for mental health, increasing access to services and resources in the community.
Here are some power takeaways from today’s conversation:
- The gender dream gap and how The Dream Academy bridges the gap
- The need for continuous mentorship
- Steps to building self-confidence
- The importance of a personal board of directors
[04:32] The Dream Academy: Bridging the Gender Dream Gap
Creating resources when people are in crisis is wonderful, but it’s important to address the root causes. We shouldn’t wait until there’s a tragedy before we give someone resources to do something about it. A study suggests that girls stop dreaming at 7 years old. That’s a far cry from boys who continue to dream throughout adulthood. Not being able to realize your dream leads to hopelessness that could lead to suicidal ideation and attempts. This is the impetus behind the creation of The Dream Academy. We need to restore the ability of girls to dream by giving them the resources to live them out.
[08:12] The Need for Continuous Mentorship
Dr. Kennedy Garcia emphasizes the importance of mentorship in helping people overcome limited beliefs, especially when they come from negative environments. Mentorship is a cyclical process that requires time and effort to help mentees reach a place of self-empowerment and of a positive mindset. She has witnessed the transformation of people’s lives through mentorship and believes that it is a valuable tool in eliminating limited beliefs.
[16:24] Steps to Building Self-Confidence
- Connect with your Creator: Spend time in prayer, meditation, or whatever form of connection that resonates with you to tap into that source. Reflect on the qualities your Creator instilled in you and affirm them.
- Identify your strengths: Take an inventory of your strengths and talents. Recognize what makes you unique and exceptional. This will help you focus on what you are good at rather than what you lack.
- Embrace your blind spots: Recognize where you need to grow and improve. Instead of seeing your blind spots as weaknesses, view them as opportunities for development.
- Take action: Confidence comes from taking action. Practice and do as much as you can. The more you do, the more confident you will become. Remember, progress is better than perfection.
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