Gilbert PT - April 2020

April 2020


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The Same Way Others Helped Me

Growing up, I was blessed to have some really wonderful women who became mentors to me. Even today, I have women in my life I know I can rely on and look up to when I need guidance or support. Today, I’m honored to pay it forward and help young girls, too. April 20 is Volunteer Recognition Day, and while I don’t mentor teen girls for the attention, I couldn’t think of any topic more fitting for my feature spot in the Gilbert Physical Therapy newsletter than the work I do with these girls. I’ve been attending my current church for just over a year, and early on, I wanted to get involved in the community. I love the idea of helping people, and when the opportunity to help came up with the church’s youth group, I knew I had to get involved. I took on similar roles during my undergraduate career and physical therapy schooling. I would guide young women through bible studies and help them navigate their lives with faith. It was enlightening to offer my voice to these women and mentor them through the difficulties they were facing. I’m currently working with a group of ninth-grade girls, serving as another adult presence to support them through their faith and life. It can be difficult to be a teenage girl. Between social media telling you how you should look and act and the ever- growing worth placed on having followers and fame, it can be really hard for young girls to figure out who they are, feel loved, and understand that their Creator accepts them. My goal is to serve as a friend and mentor who will always support them, especially since I’ve been where they are. It isn’t always easy, but I love every minute I spend with these girls. In fact, a lot of the same skills I use here at Gilbert Physical Therapy are applicable

“Everything is better whenwework together, andwhen you’re doing something you’re passionate about, the feeling is even sweeter.”

to my work with the girls! I have to be an active listener and ask questions that dig deeper into the heart of the problems my patients and the girls are facing. Sometimes, people just need to externally process and serving as that sounding board can be powerful. Other times, I may have solutions and tools to help them mend their emotional health and mentality. It’s really empowering. I’m so glad I took a chance on leading a group of girls at my church. It’s something I’m passionate about, finding a cause to dedicate myself and my life to. I would encourage you to partner with meaningful causes that light a fire inside of you. It’s far easier to devote precious free time to causes when it doesn’t feel like a sacrifice. Instead, it feels exciting to help! Whether it’s mentoring, cleaning up litter, or serving meals, volunteering is a powerful way to connect to your community and be part of something larger than yourself. Everything is better when we work together, and when you’re doing something you’re passionate about, the feeling is even sweeter.

–Dr. Abbey McMillen 1

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