Published: 22nd September 2021
Now here's a book by Psychology students that'll help adolescents navigate their emotions
Eesha Borthakur and Hiral S Shah have opened pre-orders for their book, A Joi Ride, that’ll help all those adolescents riddled with doubts steer through life with comparative ease
Joi starts out as a sad 13-year-old, a peculiar age where you are not a child nor an adolescent yet. Their beloved sister is leaving for college. No amount of printed T-shirts, video games or books can placate them. Actually, Joi is a story of many other awkward children who are going through a rollercoaster of emotions that they are just learning to deal with. And Joi is the name of the gender-neutral protagonist of the book A Joi Ride. As Eesha Borthakur rightly puts it, "Joi is a little bit of all of us."
Eesha Borthakur and Hiral S Shah
This limited edition book, a virtual preview of which was held on September 19, is a conclusion to Eesha's experience as a fellow of Changelooms 2020 by Delhi-based NGO Pravah. Changelooms is in collaboration with Hyderabad-based NGO Rubaroo and is supported by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, US Department of State. Under this, Eesha and her classmate, Hiral S Shah, started Mind Motions with the vision to facilitate safe spaces to initiate dialogues on emotional health among youngsters. The students of St Francis College for Women, who are pursuing Psychology, did this via Roses and Thorns, a 12-week virtual platform where all aspects of emotional health was up for discussion among 25 to 30 participants. "From the discussions, the conclusion we arrived at was that if mental health was introduced at a much younger age, youngsters might have been well-versed with the vocabulary of mental health and how to take care of it. We wanted to create a guide and resource for children and early adolescents that could help them," explains Hiral. And that's how the two 20-year-olds came up with the book, A Joi Ride.
From the book
What made Mind Motions a hit was its interactive nature, hence, the duo wanted to incorporate the same in their book as well. A Joi Ride is predominantly a comic book, sensitively illustrated by Neha Nara, with 12 chapters and each chapter is divided into four parts. For instance, one chapter deals with how Joi is reprimanded by their parents for waking up late, which sparks a fit of anger in the adolescent. What follows is a deconstruction of anger as an emotion that doesn't portray it in a negative light, but actually states that it's normal and valid to feel angry. A worksheet allows you to write down your angry feelings and understand what calms you down. A takeaway furthers one’s understanding of the emotion to explain why the particular feeling is caused. Sounds like quite the wholesome guide, doesn't it? "Not just a guide, we did not want it to be just another book on your shelf. We wanted it to be a friend you can turn to and a journal you can refer to so that you can remind yourself that life is not always a joyride," adds Eesha who hails from Jorhat, Assam.
The book cover
The duo started working on the book in March 2021 and since that day, every day at 6 pm, they would get together virtually to toil over their labour of love. It is a combined effort, through and through. Who knew a serendipitous meet on the basketball court could lead to a partnership beyond friendship. "We knew early on that doing something like Mind Motions or the book without professional help wouldn't be the best approach, so we turned to experts when we were doubtful," says Hiral, who is from Hyderabad. Both of them agree that Mind Motions and A Joi Ride has made them the confident ladies they are today and are sure that it will impact more youngsters in the days to come.
For more on them check out instagram.com/mind.motions