May You Shine is a venture to empower young women to live happier, healthier lives and shine bright. We are on a mission to prevent suicide, self-harm and bullying by getting rid of the stigma around mental disorders and promoting strong mental health, good self-care and healthy self-esteem.
We have a vision of young women thriving and feeling happy, peaceful, empowered and excited about their lives. We see young women coming to this site and using our app to practice good self-care and take care of their mental health. We see a safe online community where young women are sharing their challenges and supporting one another.
We see young women feeling strong, inspired and uplifted when they receive self-care packages from their parents – packages with inspiring messages, fun products promoting mindfulness and good self-care, and empowering information (e.g., how to deal with bullying, how to help a friend who’s struggling, how to set healthy boundaries in relationships).
We want women to know
- You are important
- You matter
- You are not alone
- The world needs you and what you alone can bring to the world – even if you’re not quite sure what that is just yet
- You can make simple changes in your thinking and behaviors to live a happier, more peaceful life
Where We Are
We are developing innovative ways to promote good self-care and improve one’s mental health:
- A free mobile app to help young women shift out of anxiety and depression naturally and regularly updated content promoting good self-care
- This website to provide content for the app
- Self-care packages with inspiring messages, fun products promoting mindfulness and good self-care, and empowering information (e.g., how to deal with bullying, how to help a friend who’s struggling, how to set healthy boundaries in relationships)
We are in the research and development phase. We have a number of advisors and many connections in the mental health field, the self-improvement industry and the media. We are in the process of:
- Going through the Washington University Brown School of Social Work Social Enterprise program
- Collaborating with an app development company that has volunteered to create the app for us
- Looking into ways to collaborate with mental health experts and agencies
- Building relationships with coaches, authors and educators who can offer valuable content for young people and parents
- Researching and writing content
- Creating branding and a logo
- Researching grant and sponsor opportunities
- Offering workshops and classes to help people experience more peace, joy, love, harmony and abundance
Depression is running rampant in our society. Anti-depressants are among the top three types of medications prescribed in the U.S. People of all ages face more challenges than ever. And young people can be especially susceptible to depression and anxiety as they figure out who they are and what their place is in the world. Many people are suffering:
- Suicide is the #1 cause of death of teen girls
- It’s the third cause of death of 15- to 24-year-olds
- Someone somewhere in the world dies by suicide every 40 seconds
- One in 12 teens cuts as a way to control emotional pain
- Addiction is a growing problem
I Get It
May You Shine is led by Sonja Shin: I began experiencing severe depression and anxiety in elementary school. I experienced bullying in elementary school through high school–physically getting hit for years. I learned to soothe myself with cutting and alcohol. I learned to mask my feelings to protect myself. I learned to be a super achiever to feel good about myself.
Eventually I learned that what I did was not who I was. After years of trying to prove myself and then getting laid off repeatedly during the dot-com bust in Silicon Valley, I fell apart. I had an identity crisis and thought I was a burden. I lost my way. With a lot of support, I found my way back.
I learned there are simple, healthy ways of coping with life’s inevitable challenges by shifting my thinking and behaviors to shift how I felt and how my brain was wired. I wondered why they weren’t taught to kids so they could handle life better and live happier lives without thinking about killing themselves and becoming addicted to unhealthy ways of coping (like drugs, smoking, alcohol, food, sex and shopping).
Now I Want to Change Things
I want to make it easy for young people to get the help they need and for parents to learn how to support their kids.
I am using my experience as award-winning medical/tech/science journalist who shares wellness advice on television, as a producer for The Today Show and NBC Nightly News in New York City, as a website designer/developer for NASA and Stanford, as blogger, writer and video producer to create something new (see my resume for more info about my background and experience).
Thank You for Your Support
I began this work in late 2014 with the help of many donations via Gofundme. If you’d like to support this work, donations of any size are accepted with immense gratitude. And if you’re interested in sponsoring this site and/or investing in the projects in progress, please contact me.
Thank you for visiting May You Shine. I hope you will find something beneficial here to help you shine.
With Love and Gratitude,
Health and Medical Information. From time to time, we share health and medical information on this site. The content here is for informational purposes and not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the counsel of your personal physician or other qualified health provider regarding any medical condition.
Photo by Vincent_AF