Year 9 Leigh Aspire students from Longfield, The Leigh, Strood, Mascalls and Stationers’ Crown Woods academies participated in a Trust-funded workshop with career coach and motivational speaker Erica Sosna on Friday 17th November. (

Life Journey

The event started with an ‘Inspirational Talk’ from Mindset Coach, Lewis Raymond Taylor (www.lewisraymondtaylor.comwho enlightened the students on his life journey so far.  Having made some poor choices in his early life, he made a decision to change his mindset and make different choices.  He went back to studying, took exams and eventually, after an enormous amount of hard work and self-discipline, gained a First Class Degree and now runs his own business.  He explained to the students that, for him, pushing himself out of his comfort zone and working hard everyday became the norm.

IMG_1065  es lewis

The students responded well to Lewis’ talk, with positive comments, such as

“Lewis’ speech was inspiring.”




Erica began her session with a question for the students – What does success mean to me?’

The students discussed this with each other and came up with a selection of answers, including

  • Enough money to be financially independent
  • To be able to give back to people who have helped me
  • A successful job
  • The power to be happy and make good choices
  • Owning my own business

Students then discussed obstacles that could get in their way and steps they could possibly take to overcome these.

erica success 1

The Hero’s Journey

erica hero

Erica introduced the students to the idea of having a goal for the future and going on a journey to achieve it.  Students then plotted their journey towards their goal onto their own ‘Hero’s Journey’ Discussions and feedback from the students followed, with an interactive session that saw the students standing or sitting dependent on their answers to questions about their journey.

erica hero 1  erica hero 2  erica hero 3

Feedback included:  

“I liked completing the ‘Hero’s Journey’ as it made me realise I am about a ⅓ of the way towards my goal”


Steps to achieving your goal

Now the students had their goal in mind, they were able to make a plan of how they might achieve it.  Working backwards from their goal, they plotted what they would be doing at various steps along the way, to help them achieve their end goal.

erica goal 1  erica goal 2  erica goal 3  erica goal 4  erica goal 5  erica goal 6

Visualisation technique

Erica introduced the students to a visualisation technique to help them relax and unwind.  Students were asked to relax, in any position they found comfortable, and to close their eyes.  She talked them through a series of visualisation scenarios, asking them to imagine their own special place, time, gift etc.

erica visual 1  erica visual 2

The room fell silent, as students engrossed themselves in the technique.

“I enjoyed the visualisation technique and found it useful”


“The visualisation techniques were very relaxing”



Excellent feedback, from the students, was received on the day:

“I found it very interesting and inspiring.”


“Anything is possible if you put your mind to it!”


“I believe I can achieve my dream by only paying attention to people that believe in me.”


“It helped me to know what I can do.”


“I enjoyed today as it made me feel I could accomplish anything if I put my mind to it.”


erica feedback