33 episodes

Jessica Minhas, host and founder of I'll Go First®, dives into the topics and conversations that we want to have but are a little afraid to talk about or aren't sure where to start. Join her at the table as she shares her story about overcoming abuse, sexual assault, trauma, and chronic illnesses. Celebrate the stories of courageous overcomers, inspiring mental health champions, and those boldly stepping into taboo spaces and inviting us into a full life. Listen, learn, and heal with people just like us who look adversity in the eye and say, “I will not stand down. I'll go first.”

I'll Go First® with Jessica Minhas I'll Go First®, Inc

    • Mental Health
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

Jessica Minhas, host and founder of I'll Go First®, dives into the topics and conversations that we want to have but are a little afraid to talk about or aren't sure where to start. Join her at the table as she shares her story about overcoming abuse, sexual assault, trauma, and chronic illnesses. Celebrate the stories of courageous overcomers, inspiring mental health champions, and those boldly stepping into taboo spaces and inviting us into a full life. Listen, learn, and heal with people just like us who look adversity in the eye and say, “I will not stand down. I'll go first.”

    Domestic Violence in the Shadow of COVID-19 with Reveal Beauty

    Domestic Violence in the Shadow of COVID-19 with Reveal Beauty

    In honor of Domestic Violence Month, this episode is a recording of a panel I moderated on “Domestic violence in a time of COVID” with the nonprofit Reveal Beauty. We talked about the definition of domestic violence, how to know if you’re in a situation of intimate partner violence, misconceptions, how to support a loved one who may be a victim of domestic violence, resources, and how to take care of ourselves while taking care of others. 

    We are joined with Ileana Aguilar, Community Education Training Specialist, Safe Austin in Austin, Texas; Asa Scott, Associate Director of Clinical Services at the Bowery Missions, in New York City; and Anna Doan, Founder of Reveal Beauty. 

    Goodies from this Episode: 

    Get involved with Reveal Beauty: https://www.revealbeauty.org/ 

    Get involved with the Bowery Mission: https://www.bowery.org/ 

    Get involved with SAFE Austin: https://www.safeaustin.org/ 

    Looking for mental health resources? Check out: www.illgofirst.com/find-help

    Listen to more episodes at www.illgofirst.com/stories

    In crisis? Text “GO FIRST” to 741-741 to speak with a trained crisis counselor 24/7 for free. 

    Have a suggestion? Don’t be shy! We’d love to hear from you! Say “Hi” at hello@illgofirst.com

    • 42 min
    Overcoming Childhood Bullying, Self-Harm & Depression w/ Minaa B

    Overcoming Childhood Bullying, Self-Harm & Depression w/ Minaa B

    Psychotherapist, poet, and writer Minaa B started her Instagram account as a way to share her poetry and musings. As someone who has overcome bullying, self-harm, suicidality, and depression, she wanted to help others heal too. That was before COVID. In the months following the global pandemic, Minaa’s Instagram presence and community have exploded. The message is clear, people are hurting, and people are yearning for a safe community that says, "Me too."

    In this episode, Minaa and I talk about coming from immigrant families and finding our identities, grieving the deaths of our parents, overcoming bullying, and healing from self-harm. Minaa shares how she has learned to be seen and how she is using her voice so that others may heal too.

    Goodies from this Episode:

    Connect with Minaa: https://www.instagram.com/minaa_b/

    Read Minaa’s book: Rivers Are Coming: A Collection of Essays And Poems On Healing From Depression and Trauma - https://www.minaab.com/riversarecoming

    Learn more about Minaa’s work: https://www.minaab.com/

    Mental health resources mentioned on the show:

    NAIMI: https://www.nami.org/help

    Mental Health Gov: https://www.mentalhealth.gov/

    Looking for mental health resources? Check out: www.illgofirst.com/find-help

    Listen to more episodes at: www.illgofirst.com/stories

    In crisis? Text “GO FIRST” to 741-741 to speak with a trained crisis counselor 24/7 for free.

    Have a suggestion? Don’t be shy! We’d love to hear from you! Say “Hi” at hello@illgofirst.com

    • 42 min
    Discovering Your Purpose with National Geographic Explorer Ben Ayers

    Discovering Your Purpose with National Geographic Explorer Ben Ayers

    When Ben Ayers was 20 years old, he took $300 and moved from Maine to a remote village in Nepal. He did not know the language but he knew he wanted to support the porters who carry trekker’s climbing gear up and down Mt Everest. That was 23 years ago. Now, at 43, Ben is discovering the next evolution of his purpose, knowing himself. I met Ben when I was 20 years old. He is who inspired me to devote my career to human rights. He showed me that bringing our unique talents and giftings to the social issues we’re passionate about can truly change the world. (It sounds cheesy but it's true.) In this episode, he teaches us what effective human rights work looks like, how knowing ourselves is the most important is the key to unlocking our purpose.

    Goodies from this Episode:

    Watch Ben’s film “The Last Honey Hunter”: https://vimeo.com/201695311

    Learn more about Ben’s work: https://www.jetbutterflies.com/

    Follow Ben’s adventures: https://www.instagram.com/jetbutterflies/

    Connect with Ben: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ben-ayers-2271701b3/

    In crisis? Text “GO FIRST” to 741-741 to speak with a trained crisis counselor 24/7 for free.

    Have a suggestion? Don’t be shy! We’d love to hear from you! Say “Hi” at hello@illgofirst.com

    • 41 min
    Finding Our Why & Radical Acts of Love with Reverend Vahisha Hasan

    Finding Our Why & Radical Acts of Love with Reverend Vahisha Hasan

    Listening to Reverend Vahisha Hasan one can’t help but believe we can be more and do more. We know the conversation around race is fragile and charged. In this episode, Reverend Hasan helps us understand how to approach these conversations with grace and strength. She also shares how she found her faith and how faith is the core of social action and dismantling white supremacy. We laughed, we cried, and bonus: we learn how the Care Bears can inspire us to fight for freedom. 


    Goodies from this Episode: 


    Find out more about Transform Network at https://www.transformnetwork.org/vahisha-hasan

    Books mentioned: 

    “2019 Lenten Devotional for Dismantling White Supremacy”:https://www.transformnetwork.org/news/2019/2/7/why-i-hope-youll-read-this-2019-lent-devotional-for-dismantling-white-supremacy 

    Reverend James Cone, “Black Theology Liberation”: https://www.amazon.com/Black-Theology-Liberation-James-Cone/dp/1570758956

    Connect with Reverend Hasan at https://www.linkedin.com/in/vahishahasan

    In crisis? Text “GO FIRST” to 741-741 to speak with a trained crisis counselor 24/7 for free. 


    Have a suggestion? Don’t be shy! We’d love to hear from you! Say “Hi” at hello@illgofirst.com

    • 45 min
    Celebrating Those We Have Lost with Cynthia Hellen

    Celebrating Those We Have Lost with Cynthia Hellen

    Cynthia Hellen is the definition of a boss. She’s a serial social entrepreneur. She’s inspirational, ambitious, and stunning. She’s easy to love. On her way to building a future, her fiancé, Ryan, found out he had advanced liver disease. Ryan fought for over 18 months to overcome his diagnosis but it wasn’t enough. At the young age of 30, he passed away. Cynthia speaks candidly about her journey as the daughter of immigrant parents who fled from Peru to America as asylum seekers, being a young caretaker, losing the love of her life, and how she’s learning to celebrate Ryan’s life and legacy.

    Goodies from this episode: 

    Connect with Cynthia:  
    www.cynthiahellen.com

    Learn more about Oh Hello Liver: https://www.ohhelloliver.org/

    Learn more about SMPLCT Lab: https://www.smplctlab.org/

    Learn more about the Winning Women Series: https://www.winningwomenseries.com/

    Check out more I’ll Go First episodes at: https://www.illgofirst.com/podcast

    Find support: https://www.illgofirst.com/find-help

    In crisis? Text GOFIRST to speak with a trained crisis counselor 24/7 for free. 

    Have a suggestion? Don't be shy! We would love to hear from you. Say 'Hi' at hello@illgofirst.com

    • 50 min
    Who Am I? Forming Your Identity as a Second-Generation Immigrant with Imani Movva

    Who Am I? Forming Your Identity as a Second-Generation Immigrant with Imani Movva

    We have all struggled to answer the questions, “Who am I?” and “What do I want?” Those ‘simple’ questions can feel overwhelming, especially if you come from a culture or home where asking those questions was against the rules. Imani Movva is a psychotherapist and executive and business coach. She joins us in this episode to talk about how she forged her identity independent of harmful social and cultural norms, how to create safety in your life, career, and friendships and how to answer the big question, “Now what?” amid COVID and BLM.

    Goodies from this episode:

    Connect with Imani:
    https://www.linkedin.com/in/imani-movva-71792096/

    Check out more I’ll Go First episodes at: https://www.illgofirst.com/podcast

    In crisis? Text GOFIRST to speak with a trained crisis counselor 24/7 for free.

    Have a suggestion? Don't be shy! We would love to hear from you. Say 'Hi' at hello@illgofirst.com

    • 34 min

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