Keisha Arshad is a practicum student
who uses her calm and persistent Superpowers
to help Calgary kids grow their strength and serenity
to conquer Big Worries (anxiety struggles).
Before your first session, you can share this story
with your child.
Once upon a time, there was a little girl called Keisha, who loved learning, talking, and listening. This is her Superpower story (it’s about finding calm even when Big Worries visit your brain) and she wants to share it with you.
Keisha was a curious little girl. She wanted to know many things. What she was most curious about was the brain. Her favourite toy was not a doll or a bike or a train, but a toy brain.
She wondered about the brain. What were thoughts and feelings? Where did they come from? From her brain or her heart? Keisha found she could feel different feelings at different times. Most feelings and thoughts felt happy when they visited her brain, but others (like “Big Worries“) did not.
One day, Keisha discovered how to find her favourite feeling: calm. Calm felt to Keisha like a safe, warm blanket— like a soft, caring hug she gave to herself. Like confidence and courage. She practiced and practiced finding calm, a little every day. Practicing was fun. Little by little, she got better at finding calm. Until one day, she could quickly find calm no matter what. What a Superpower to have!
What about other kids? Could Keisha help them find their own calm?
Keisha was friendly and kind. She wondered about the feelings of other kids, especially if they looked worried or sad or lonely. Having “Big Worries” on their mind must be so hard, she thought. How could she help them feel better, make new friends, and have more fun?
To find out how to help, she read books, and talked to kids and grown-ups. She talked to her parents and family and her neighbours and her friends at school. In a friendly calm way, she asked them questions. What do you like? How are you feeling today? Would you like to play and talk? She listened to them and learned about the ways they were special and strong, and she also listened to her own heart. After a while, Keisha got to know them as they talked with open hearts.
She discovered that everyone was a little different in some ways. Some loved the same things she did, but some did not. For some, pink was best, while some preferred green or yellow. Some liked chocolates, and others liked pizza. Keisha liked spicy snacks, but those very same snacks tasted too spicy for some to enjoy. That’s because feelings feel different for different people, at different times. Feelings can change.
Keisha uses her calmness Superpower for the first time
One day, a little girl came to Keisha’s school. She was sitting alone. Keisha thought she looked lonely and sad. Maybe she has “Big Worries”, thought Keisha. Maybe I can help her feel better.
“Hi! I’m Keisha. What’s your name?” asked Keisha in her calm, friendly voice.
“Lily,” the little girl said, and started to cry.
Gently, Keisha asked Lily if she could sit with her. She nodded her head yes, and they sat in silence for a while. Then Keisha listened quietly as Lily shared her “Big Worries”. She was worried about being new in school, about making friends, about getting good grades. Those “Big Feelings” and “Big Worries” felt like a rock in her heart.
Keisha listened in her calm, friendly way. They each talked with an open heart. Sitting together and talking to Keisha helped Lily to feel a little better. Calmer. Stronger, less alone. Hopeful. It was a great start.
That’s how Keisha found one of her Superpowers: connecting with others and finding calm, courage, strength, and serenity together!
Since that day, when a child in her class had a “Big Worries” look on their face, Keisha would sit next to them and talk. She helped kids feel better.
Many years passed and Keisha grew up. She became a practicum student at Kids Reconnect, where she helps kids to learn and practice their “feel better” skills. She loves learning new things about the brain every day. In 2023 (this year!) Keisha will be graduating from university with a psychology master’s degree, which we are very excited to see!
Kids who have hard challenges (like “Big Worries”, which psychologists call anxiety) can meet Keisha for a child session – or join one of her Feelings & Friends Groups. When you find your special calmness Superpower, how do you think that feeling will feel?
Keisha’s Professional Bio
Keisha Arshad is a practicum student on the Kids Reconnect child therapist team. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a minor in Psychology from Mount Royal University and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Counselling Psychology from the City University of Seattle – Alberta Campus. Her intellectual skills and dedication have been recognized with a City University of Seattle Scholarship (2020/2021/2023), the Dean’s Honor Roll at City University of Seattle – Alberta Campus (2020-2022), the Dean’s Honor at Mount Royal University (2014-2019), an Outstanding Sociology Student (2018-2019) award, and an Alexander Rutherford High School Achievement Scholarship.
She has honed her mental health experience in the non-profit and volunteer sectors working with children, parents, and families in the crisis intervention, developmental disabilities, interpersonal skills, counselling psychology, and mental health counselling fields. As a practicum student, she uses integrative play and expressive arts in her therapy work with children at Kids Reconnect and has an interest in Strengths-Based, Trauma-Informed, Client-Centred, Solutions-Focused, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Family Systems therapy approaches. Keisha also has an in-depth understanding of the dimensions of diversity in relation to gender, race, social class, and age, as well as ways that macro and micro social institutions, structures, and processes influence social behaviour. She loves to share these skills and is a skilled facilitator of cultural diversity and multicultural issues workshops.
In her role as a practicum student at Kids Reconnect, Keisha is excited to be helping Calgary kids to explore and grow the immense potential of their Superpower strengths.