Silvia Giovannoni will be speaking at Instill this year, on 11th November on Yoga and creativity. We interviewed Silvia about her work.
Yoga and Creativity
For almost 10 years Silvia has been working with teenagers as a facilitator of empowerment and creativity. Silvia says, “I embarked on this amazing journey of becoming an empowerment youth facilitator, a creative being in touch with my own creativity and sense of wonder for life again. My journey training to do this work taught me that in order to be around teenagers and for them to flourish, you need to do the work on yourself first.”
This was life-changing for Silvia and a process that brought much joy and meaning, she says, “The transformation I experience in the young people is astonishing and this is what I’d like to devote my life to: providing youth with meaningful and transformative learning experiences that awaken them to their own sense of power and purpose in the world.”
For many years, a big part of Silvia’s work was focused on a multi-arts approach and although she used yoga and movement work, it was an area where she felt there was a lot of room for development. “In my experience, young people were going through a stage of disconnection to their bodies, and it`s a time when so many negative mental narratives can be developed. This has made me want to bring more yoga and conscious movement into the mix.”
Silvia currently teaches yoga, mindfulness and movement at schools and after school programmes and finds it so complementary to the other work she does around exploring creativity. The less stressed, more confident, and at ease the young people are with themselves the more open they are to embrace their creativity and place in the world as creative beings.
Some interesting stories
Silvia has many interesting stories about her work. There are stories of deep transformation where young people have turned difficult situations around by engaging with creative pursuits. Silvia has also witnessed the young people’s ability for deep thinking and wisdom and there have been stories of self-acceptance after a history of self-harming and abuse; as well as examples of tremendous courage in sharing stories.
Motivation to work with young people
Silvia loves the energy, honesty and resilience of young people. She says, “They are a source of inspiration and keep me fresh and on my toes. I find that to be effective with them, I need to tend to my own creative self and speak my authentic voice. It is also rewarding to act as a mentor at times and be able to help them find their own inner light!” Silvia also loves that the work is alive, is always evolving and renewing and the fact that each group she works with has a different flavor and need; “as a teacher and facilitator, I need to be always open to respond to that. I learn so much!”
Lessons learned and shared with others
“Both myself and my colleagues have witnessed time and time again that making opportunities for creative expression within a context of care and connection is a seemingly magical key for unlocking hope and resilience. It is not rocket science but it is powerful and in my view it is exactly these kinds of environments we should be fostering more in education and in our communities. The world needs young people who can respond to the world’s issues from a place of creative connection!”
What’s important now?
“I still feel the fields (creativity, yoga, other healing and community arts) lack the deserved presence in the typical curriculum. It is usually an after-thought, a response to crisis or one-off offerings.”
How do you present your work to others?
“The work I do combines my experience in working with youth empowerment through the arts and the practice and teaching of yoga. They are both complementary and powerful tools to support young people find balance and a sense of belief in their own creative capacities. Yoga brings them into self-awareness and develops their inner capabilities for regulating emotions, finding focus and grounding, while the arts gives them a fantastic tool for external, authentic self-expression. The workshops and lessons I run in schools are designed with this in mind and I find the results to have a huge and positive impact.”
Instill is supported by Yoga Alliance Professionals.