Ivey started Our Era early in the pandemic, when she was living across from a hospital. “I was watching everything,” he says. “It simply came to our notice then. “It did not really distract me from what was happening in the world, but it was definitely a good way out for me because I was so worried about COVID,” Ivey explains. She now runs an entire magazine – with impressive mental health stories and knowledge of fashion trends – as she completes her final year of high school.
For Mental Health Awareness Month, Our Era partnered with Instagram to highlight emerging Gen Z content creators who prioritize online prosperity — but, make no mistake, Ivey is a force in itself. We had the opportunity to ask Ivey about her approach to Our Era workload, why she started the project and how it relates to taking care of yourself and your mental health.
The quotation marks have been processed and condensed for the sake of clarity.
Well + Good: You are the EIC of your own edition. How do you prioritize yourself when you do something so big?
Yes, I have to be much better at that. This is my way out, I like it so much, but I convinced myself that this is me. This is my version of self-care when, really, it’s a lot of work. It can be selfish when I write things I love, but when I’m stressed about different things we do, it can be very, very tedious. I love my job and it’s a lot of fun for me, but I definitely see myself getting burned every now and then. What I do is spend time with my family, go for walks, read books and consume other media.
I know I’ve asked how you prioritize yourself, but what are some things you can always count on to refill your cup?
Having meaningful discussions with like-minded people is really rewarding. It makes me very happy, it definitely refills my cup and it makes me hope for the world – that there are other people who care and want the world to get better. Yes, discussions are very important to me.
“I think being able to decompress, stay away from your phone, read a book or go for a walk is very important.”
What would you like people to understand about you being a Gen Z?
This is a difficult question. May they understand exactly what we are going through because I do not wish anyone the stress of being young in the current social and political climate.
It’s really hard to explain to my parents. They have a very good understanding since they have three children who are Gen Z-ers, but no one really understands it to the fullest.
Are there things you would like your generation to have more of? Something you would like to have less of?
I wish we had more forgiveness and understanding for ourselves and the people around us.
Less screen time, I would say. Our age is very digital and we are very interested in that, but I think being able to decompress, stay away from your phone, read a book or go for a walk is very important. And, in an environment where social media is pervasive and often underperforming, Ivey is learning to strike a balance between social media and real connections.
If people could leave your job with an emotion, what would you like it to be?
If you have an idea, an idea or something that you are really passionate about and want to do – just do it because you really never know how far you can go. This goes with anything; it does not have to be just a creative endeavor. It could also be if you really want to run a marathon or win followers on social media. I know I just said I’m less on your phone, but I still think it ‘s very admirable.
I really want people to know, first, that you can do whatever you put in your mind, no matter how unpleasant it sounds. Two, that there are people out there in the world who understand you, connect with you and go through something similar to you. As difficult as it is, there are people in this world who understand exactly what you are going through.
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