Page 1

Color Yourself Into Self-Care Self-Care for Student Leaders of Color

Isabel Bagsik DES159 Verba Spring 2016


Table of Contents Mission Statement

4

What Already Exists

5

Research Methods

7

Primary (Stakeholders)

7

Secondary

10

Concept Development/Early Prototypes

11

User centered research

14

IDEO Method Cards

15

Final

17

Next Steps

18


Mission Statement Design for Understanding allowed me to choose a topic I was most interested in, within the realm of Public Health and Safety. Immediately, I thought of a concern I myself experience, as well as the community I am so deeply involved with. Self-care for student leaders and activists, especially students of color, is an issue that leads to decreased health problems and many times burn out. The particular community I am a part of, the Filipinx American community at the University of California, Davis, has several community leaders that preach “Remember to self-care, you are a student first before you are a student leader!”, but unfortunately do not practice what they preach and are often the ones that practice self-care the least. Many of these community leaders are too stubborn to change their habits because of their love to make great changes within their communities. My passion for social justice and serving my community has empowered me to want to search for a solution that will not necessarily make them self-care efficiently overnight, but to ease their way into an easy, manageable way to remind them to self-care and that to be able to serve the community as a student leader, they have to take care of themselves first. Otherwise, how can they take care of others? Why student leaders of color in particular? Things learned through this process can be applied to anyone who wants to practice self-care in a gradual manner. However, student leaders (of color in particular) deal with heavy issues and discussions regarding oppression and social injustices on a constant basis and have different experiences and needs than those who are not people of color. 4


What already exists?

HEADSPACE

The website focused on meditation, which I was interested in incorporating into the app. The intro animation was engaging and appealing to me, giving me a clear idea what to expect. The website layout was not overwhelming or text heavy.

My initial concept was to create an app that combined resources that student leaders frequently use, with self-care resources. I also looked into what was out there, in terms of self-care resources. I googled phrases such as: Self-care tools for student leaders Self-care tools for student activists Resources for student leaders Self-care for activists Apps for self-care And these were some of the resources I came upon:

HEADSPACE

The website focused on meditation, which I was interested in incorporating into the app. The intro animation was engaging and appealing to me, giving me a clear idea what to expect. The website layout was not overwhelming or text heavy.

STUDENT SELF-CARE MANUAL

by University at Buffalo - Wellness Education Services http://wellness.buffalo.edu/wes/14scmanp.pdf

The problem with such a rich resource is that it is too text-heavy and dense for the average student who is already too busy in the ďŹ rst place.

5


What already exists?

SELF-CARE FOR ACTIVISTS CARD Created by annmariebrok @annmariebrok

When I looked into coloring books and self-care for activists, I was inspired by this simple yet useful tool. This Self-Care for Activists card really pushed me to think about accessibility and creating something handmade, yet able to be mass-produced to benefit many people.

IFTTT

Short for “if this, then that”, IFTTT automates your digital life in the cleverest of ways. If you get an email from someone, for example, you can tell IFTTT to save the contact to your phone. This was another source of inspiration when I was still interested in creating an app, and this was a great model of an app that had the goal of simplifying routines

The advice on the card: Take Time For Yourself Drink Water Surround Yourself with Supporting People Eat Regularly Take Breaks from Social Media Get Sleep

6


Research

Primary Research To get a better idea of why student leaders and activists of color are not practicing self-care, I wanted to hold conversations with them to understand where they are coming from. I also wanted to hear from professionals who work closely with these student leaders to listen to what they notice about worn out leaders and how they guide students to take care of themselves. STAKEHOLDERS Student Leaders and Activists of Color: Gilbert Gammad Tao Manacmul Casey Nguyen Professionals: Krissy Ocampo Community Advisor for Retention Student Recruitment & Retention Center UC Davis Dr. Michelle Burt CAN Counselor UC Davis

I conducted interviews with a standard set of questions for the students and slightly more focused for the professionals depending on what their roles are with the students INTERVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE STUDENTS 1. What does self-care mean to you? 2. How many times a week/month do you self-care, whatever that means to you? 3. What are activities/ways you self-care (one-on-one conversations with friends, watching movies, eating, sleeping, etc)? 4. Why/how do these help you self-care (ex: one-on-ones allow you to catch up with a friend and not keep things bottled up)? 5. Are there digital resources/tools you use to help you self-care (websites, apps, etc)? 6. Why do you enjoy using them (easy to navigate, audio features, etc). 7. Have you experienced burn out? What happened and what could you have done differently? 8. What are things you wish another student leader advised you on, in terms of advice on self-care/preventing burn out? 9. How many hours of sleep do you get on average every weekday? 10. What are ways you do not self-care (miss meals, lack of sleep, eating unhealthy foods, etc)? 11. Do you use any resources on campus to help your mental/physical well-being (ARC, Mind Spa, CAPS, CAN counselors, etc, places to nap, etc)? 12. What tools/apps do you use for school/clubs/work/etc (ex: Groupme, FB, Instagram, Gmail, Google Drive...)? 13. How does being a POC (Person of Color) affect the lack of self-care? 14. Any other comments?

7


Research

Primary Research - Findings

“Often times people of color, marginalized identities is an extra layer of stress in white institutions like UC Davis. Microaggressions and other things are things they have to deal with. For student leaders of this community, there are extra demands. They have to be down for the cause, always have to be there.” -Dr. Michelle Burt

Through the interviews alone, I gained a greater understanding of what self-care means and how that ties in with the being a student of color. “There is a quote from Audre Lorde, which I used for a self-care workshop: ‘Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation and that is an act of political warfare’ ”. ...We are in a society that doesn’t allow us to self-care, it’s an act of survival.” -Gilbert Gammad “I believe as a student of color, I have much more work to do to get equity. I have to work even harder than other students than more priviliged backgrounds. They have experiences and time to self-care, but I’ve been contantly told to keep on the grind, hard work will result in relaxation but I haven’t reached that yet.” -Tao Manacmul “We live in a society that doesn’t allow us to survive. If we think about who is allowed to succeed, and who fails, only white cis-straight able-bodied middle class men are images of perfection. This is instituitionalized in law and media. They have the happy stories. They can self-care. POC, marginalized identities aren’t allowed to see images of success in images of themselves. Society doesn’t view us as people.” -Gilbert Gammad

“As a WOC (Womxn of Color), we tend to internalize that we need to do more, we think we are more valuable and more productive and worthy. Being a child of immigrant parents, we see a lot that parents are constantly working and sacrificing...I need to unpack that. My ideas of productivity and sacrifice is tied to capitlaism, being a WOC, hardworking. I need to unpack all of that, I would have done more to take care of myself.” -Krissy Ocampo

“There are two forms: Individual level: spiritual, mental, emotional, physical self-care so not to just make you feel better...for students of color there is no place to recover to. We have to place continuously these systemic inequalities, oppressive acts, injustices. Self-care as a community is the second level: decompress and heal together. It’s an effort that we don’t know what that means yet.” -Casey Nguyen “Yes I self-care but still feel this heaviness, this burden. We do work that the University should be doing. This is how we build community. POC find community by building it because it’s not readily available to students. Everything we do is political, an act of survival, resistance.” -Casey Nguyen

8


Research

Primary Research - Findings Interviews also allowed me to learn how people neglected self-care, as well as the different methods people self-cared, because self-care does not look the same for everyone.

COMMON SELF-CARE ACTIVITES Basic self-care needs Taking a shower Getting enough sleep Remembering to eat Venting to friends Breathing GIFs to ease social anxiety Visiting family Mindless activities Watching Netix, movies, TV, Youtube Taking selďŹ es to improve self-love Snapchat friends Putting on makeup Painting nails Bike rides outside Shopping Traveling Blogging

9


Research

Secondary Research SELF-CARE AS POLITICAL FOR WOMEN HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS http://www.awid.org/news-and-analysis/politicizing-self-care-and-wellbeing-our-activism-women-human-rights-defenders

This article gave me a greater understanding of how marginalized people, in this case womxn, have more trouble self-caring. From the article, Jessica Horn, a human rights activist, says, “Many feminists argue (Audre Lorde being one of them) that we live in systems of power that are designed to make us unhappy that are strategically designed to erase the happiness and well-being of certain groups of people. So it is in and of itself a political act to affirm the happiness of women in a patriarchal society.” She also goes into individual and community self-care: “I also think that we underestimate the amount of emotional and mental stress that oppression and injustice cause, and also fail to recognize that the stress is a collective stress. We tend to forget that when one person is attacked everybody is impacted.”

PODCAST BY EVETTE DIONE ABOUT AUDRE LORDE’S “SELF-CARE IS A POLITICAL WARFARE”

https://bitchmedia.org/article/audre-lorde-thought-self-care-act-political-warfare

This podcast gave me greater insight on the issues regarding the black community and the lack of self-care going on for their community leaders. Evette Dione, says, “Chronic illnesses are killing black women in droves. Our health matters through self-care, such as going to the doctore going to the gym, eating healthier. Whatever that looks like (annual pap smears, physicals, etc) can be a matter of life and death.” She continues on with how the most marginalized group, black womxn, deal with lack of self-care and how she unpacks that: “Black women are pillars of their community: taking care of everyone in families and those not blood families also. Taking care of ourselves first is selfish and taking away from the community, but taking care of myself should be a priority, to make sure I am healthy. I am no good to anybody else if I am no good to myself.” This last quote I found relevant to how student leaders should start thinking when serving their communities. They cannot serve others if they are not okay.

10


Concept Development/Early Prototypes I was excited to take on the design problem solving for an issue I am passionate about, however I realized later on that I was quite ambitious, thinking I would ďŹ nd a one-end-all solution to completely solve the issue of self-care for student leaders. The more I researched and interviewed people, I realized that becoming successful at self-care is a process, which looks different for everyone. My ďŹ rst instinct was to create an app that would combine the resources that a student leader typically uses, such as Gmail, Facebook, Google Drive, alarms, calendar, etc. with self-care activities or reminders, such as meditation, uplifting quotes, food and water reminders, and sleep reminders. I realized this would just be another app that students would use, but it would not necessarily change their behavior because they would still be on their phones thinking about their responsibilities. When I scrapped the app idea, I was stuck. I had just a handful of other ideas, such as creating an exhibit or installation that would teach about self-care and also provide spaces to physically self-care as you experience the space. Another idea was taking on the backpack that opens into a sleeping bag/tent as a way to promote napping on campus. I then had to go back to my interviews and thought about their personal self-care techniques, which a majority, if not all, were just mindless, simple activities. The idea of a coloring book came to mind because of this growing trend of coloring book for adults and the fact that it is a mindless task that anyone of all backgrounds can access and participate in. 11


Concept Development/Early Prototypes I did quick sketches of possible graphics I wanted to include within the coloring book. I then cut them out so that I could create many different formats and layouts to see how I wanted the ďŹ nal book to be.

12


Concept Development/Early Prototypes

I thought about creating a full sized coloring book, but opted for the one-sheet of paper zine. I decided upon this format because thinking about the audience, I wanted to make this accessible to all backgrounds. I envision this as a free PDF that anyone who wants to use this, can, such as at a workshop or hand out at rallies and can mass produce this using just a home printer.

13


Concept Development/Early Prototypes User-centered Research

After creating a few different forms with pages laid out in a variety of ways, I handed them to friends and fellow student leaders to hear their feedback. Everyone gave positive, excited feedback and overall appreciated the soothing illustrative style and self-care reminders. They found the spaces for free doodling great, but appreciated the pre-made illustrations for those who deem themselves not as creative. People also enjoyed the balance and variety of mixing illustrations with quotes and graphic doodles. In the end, the student leaders were very receptive and appreciated the project’s goal.

14


Concept Development/Early Prototypes IDEO Method Cards

NARRATION I applied the IDEO Method Card of “narration” through my user centered research. As users were navigating my prototypes, I asked them what they preffered and what they would change or add. I also asked them what they thought of the coloring books overall, to gauge their general interest and opinions regarding the product. From this, I was able to learn what to keep and what to change, as well as hear their thought processes as they navigated through the coloring books.

TRY IT YOURSELF I applied the IDEO Method Card of “try it yourself” by navigating and experiencing the coloring book on myself because I also identify with my target audience. By going through the pages and handling the physical prototype, I tried putting myself in the space of a person who is worn out and tired, needing a break to self-care for a short moment. From this, I learned even from myself. I realized that the size was just right for someone on the go and is quite manageable to work on one small page at a time. This prevents one from feeling overwhelmed with too many pages.

15


Concept Development/Early Prototypes IDEO Method Cards

EXPERIENCE PROTOTYPE I applied the IDEO Method Card of “experience prototype” when I first quickly created the first round of coloring book zine prototypes. I had my sketches in my journal and scanned them a few times. I cut each illustration out and placed them in my blank zine templates, creating different spread layouts and compositions. Through this experience I was able to get a better understanding of the physical experience as I navigated the pages and what that would look and feel like to a user.

16


Final Product

17


Next Steps After creating a few prototypes and reďŹ ned them into one ďŹ nal product, I am interested in creating a collection or series that each have a different focus regarding self-care. Within those different series, I would addmore illustrations that have more body and gender representation. I would also love to ďŹ nd more gentle self-care reminders and other quotes by activists. To push this further, I would be excited to have this passed out guerilla style at rallies or other activist events. I am also interested in giving this out to student leaders who hold self-care workshops and hear any feedback regarding the coloring book zines. Eventually, it would be great to have this as a free PDF online and publicized to be shared to as many people as possible. Because everyone has the right to be reminded to self-care, and that they are a priority too. 18


Profile for Isabel

Color Yourself Into Self-Care  

Design for Understanding / UC Davis DES159, Verba / Designed by Isabel Bagsik

Color Yourself Into Self-Care  

Design for Understanding / UC Davis DES159, Verba / Designed by Isabel Bagsik

Advertisement