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The Next Einstein COMPETITION ENTRY

ENTRY TITLE

Mental Wealth
IDEA BY: Robert Celik LOCATION: Canada CATEGORY: Technology

ENTRY TITLE

Mental Wealth
IDEA BY: Robert Celik
LOCATION: Canada
CATEGORY: Technology

ENTRY DESCRIPTION

Changing expectations of society are placing seeming insurmountable pressures on today’s youth. It is still possible to reduce impact on mental wellbeing by changing the way we think about, approach and react to stressors and uncertainty.

There have been recent campaigns in response to issues of mental health in youth. Ontario universities in particular have experienced increased cases of student suicides. In response, the universities have introduced clinics and support staff to ‘meet the needs of students’. However, this approach is entirely reactionary. We need to create preventative mental health strategies to buffer consequences that result from increased stress and uncertainty. Acute mental health issues are entirely preventable. Despite society's changing expectations, we can provide youth the means to reduce the negative effects of stress. Selecting the right music, having someone to talk to, tactical breathing, daily exercise and messages of positivity and encouragement are just some of the many ways that can allow someone to regain control of their mental wellbeing. A unique combination of these solutions can be introduced to individuals on their devices through simple forms of artificial intelligence (AI). The goal is not to create a meditation app but a holistic approach to mental health. It is natural instinct to let our frustration through anger, physical violence, substance abuse, or self-harm, which are all physically destructive practices. We need to retrain youth to manage stress from within; similar to the way monks can block negativity from their minds. AI systems can recognize stress in users of technology based on factors such as their calendar commitments or the way they interact with the device. The system can then recommend strategies such as visual breathing exercises, where the user takes five minutes to perform deep breaths in tempo with an expanding shape on the screen. Every morning, users can a start their day with a goal setting exercise, or self-motivation, initiated by the software. This will enable users to better react to the problems that they encounter throughout the day.