LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Most kids who are dealing with distance learning are just trying to survive this school year. Emily Andaya, a senior at Las Vegas Academy, is feeling the same stress as many other kids across the country.
"This past week, I was kind of stressing about, 'How is this going to work? How am I going to get into my classes on time? How am I going to manage my schedule around this?'" admitted Andaya, who's been forced to do distance learning because of the pandemic.
"I had to leave school, I was missing [dance] performances. I didn’t know when I was going to be able to see people again. So, I was really eager to find ways to help reduce my anxiety," said Andaya.
But, Emily is also balancing running a business. She recently started, 'Sweet Relief,' providing products that can help reduce the effects of anxiety and stress, as a way to help others manage their mental health.
"I really focused on how to tackle the challenge of anxiety and tackle it quickly. So, a lot of our products are small, hands-on tools that you can do. You can bring them on the go. You can bring them if you’re going to a job or something like that," said Andaya.
For about $25 (plus $3-$5 in shipping and handling) Andaya's "Anxiety Box" includes:
- Marble fidget -- "This can almost be used as a toy and [kids] are not even realizing that they’re actually helping to cope with their anxiety," said Andaya.
- Finger coils -- "They are actually a sensory tool to help relieve your anxiety."
- Small notebook and a month's worth of mantra cards -- "They’re mainly 'I am' statements, like, 'I am going to succeed today' or 'I am going to be successful.'"
- Disappearing paper to wash away any negative thoughts -- "Really just exert that frustration, rather than keeping it in your head and letting yourself think about it too much."
- Pair of mood-stabilizing stones -- "If you simply just sit and meditate with these, you can really focus on grounding yourself and centering your mind."
- Carrying pouch
Emily admits running the business puts more on her plate during this pandemic, but says it doesn't feel like work when you're helping others find that sweet relief for their mental health.
"Honestly, the whole idea and the whole inspiration behind it just came from me really wanting to help people. I’m really invested in mental health and psychology and I really just want to find ways that I can help others. If I could give [the box] out for free, I would," said Andaya.
Emily says she's really enjoying running her own business, but she really wants to study to be a psychologist or therapist so she can continue to help people.
If you'd like to learn more about Emily's "Sweet Relief" business and her "anxiety box," click this link.