from Chapter 10 of Being You: A Girl's Guide to Mindfulness
Who do you most admire? Your role models could be fictional characters, like Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series, or they could be real people like Emma Watson, who played Hermione in the films. Did you know that Emma Watson is not only an actress and an advocate for women’s rights, but also a qualified yoga teacher?
One of my biggest role models is Rosa Parks. I doubt she ever heard the word mindfulness, and it’s unlikely that she ever practiced the specific techniques I’ve described in this book, but I still consider her a model of mindful speech and compassionate action.
As I’m sure you know, Rosa Parks is famous for the day when she refused to give up her seat on a racially-segregated bus in Montgomery, AL. She was angry about being treated like a second-class citizen, but she was able to remain calm and treat other people respectfully.
You may not know that Rosa Parks also helped her community in a lot of other ways. To give just one example, after her neighbors' house was bombed, she quietly went into the kitchen and swept up the broken china. Then she helped buy them a new set of dishes.
In both her public and private actions, Rosa Parks was dealing not just with broken dishes but with a broken world.
You don’t have to be exactly like your role model. Nobody is exactly like anybody else. But you can use this person’s example to inspire you and help you think about what you’d like to do in the future. You can also think about what kind of role model you’d like to be right now in your daily life.
It might feel overwhelming to face the problems in the world, but there is always something you can do to help. The Civil Rights Movement wasn’t just a couple of actions by famous individuals like Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It involved daily choices by hundreds of thousands of people, some of them teen girls just like you.
Adapted from Being You: A Girl's Guide to Mindfulness, by Catharine Hannay.
© Prufrock Press, 2019. Used with permission. www.prufrock.com
Being You: A Girl's Guide to Mindfulness
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