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Growing Up Powerful: Ep 4. Noodle Time

Join BFFs Asha and Jestine as they try to figure out this wild thing called life. On this episode, Asha and Jestine share a quick mindfulness practice to help calm and empower yourself.

This is episode 4 of our Growing Up Powerful miniseries! These are stories about dealing with big feelings, growing up, and connecting to the world around you. And just so you know, some of these themes may be mature for our younger Rebels. We encourage listening with your grown up.

This podcast is a production of Rebel Girls. It’s based on the book Rebel Girls: Growing Up Powerful. This series was produced by Joy Smith, Deborah Goldstein, and Haley Dapkus, with sound design and mixing by Mumble Media. It was written and edited by Abby Sher. Fact-checking by Joe Rhatigan and sensitivity read by Schuyler Swenson. Narration by Margaret Ying Drake as Asha and Imani Parks as Jestine. Original theme music was composed and performed by Elettra Bargiacchi. Our executive producers were Joy Smith and Jes Wolfe. Thank you to the whole Rebel Girls team who make this podcast possible. Stay rebel!


ASHA: Welcome to Growing up Powerful with Rebel Girls!

JESTINE: I’m Jestine.

ASHA: I’m Asha. And we’re two best friends trying to figure out this thing called life. 

JESTINE: In this episode, we’re gonna take a mindfulness break. 

This is a chance for us to check in with our emotions and clear some space in our minds.

ASHA: Okay, so last time we did one, Jestine led us through this great practice of making peace with our monsters. 

JESTINE: Yep. Turns out, monsters are fine with water, or even hot chocolate. 

ASHA: Who knew? Anyway, this time I’m going to share one of my all-time favorite ways to unwind my body. I try to do this whenever I’m super tense, and I call it NOODLE TIME. 

JESTINE: Okay. Are we talking ramen, or spaghetti or…?

ASHA: It’s not really about noodles. But…sort of. All you need is..well, nothing. Rebels, feel free to join in as we go through this together. All you need to do is listen to the sounds of our voices for the next five minutes and let the relaxation begin. Ready?

JESTINE: Yes please!

ASHA: Let’s start by getting into a comfortable position, maybe sitting or lying down. Take a moment to notice how your body is feeling right here, right now. You don’t need to change anything about it. Just notice…Is my jaw tight? Are my hands cold? Am I holding my breath or hunching my shoulders?

(These are all things I do, by the way.)

Whatever you observe, it’s all good. You can close your eyes if that helps, or keep them open. Again, we’re just noticing where we are in the present moment. 

JESTINE: I am…here. My shoulders are kinda tight. And my stomach’s like…did somebody say noodles? But…I’m here.

ASHA: It’s totally normal to wander a bit. But we can bring ourselves back by taking a couple of deep breaths: in through the nose (demonstrate) and out through the mouth (aaah). One more time, and when you inhale, try to picture that breath filling your entire body. Inhale through the nose (demonstrate) and let it all out (aaah).


ASHA: Okay, here comes the fun part. If you can’t or don’t feel like doing any of these activities, that’s okay too! you can continue to pay attention to your breath. Now, if you can, focus on your toes. On the next inhale, curl your toes as tight as you can. Really tight, like you’re squeezing tiny feathers in between them and you can’t let these feathers float away. Squeeze! Squeeze squeeze!

And release. Let your feet flop open and just relax. Aaah. 

JESTINE: (relieved) Ooh! Okay.

ASHA: Feels good to let go, right? Now, on the next inhale, we’re going to squeeze our toes again and we’re going to add the tops of our feet, our ankles and our legs. Breathe in…squeeze everything in, tightening all the muscles in your toes, your feet, your ankles, your legs. Tight, tight, tight! And release.



ASHA: Now, let’s move on to our stomachs. Pull in a deep breath, focusing on your stomach muscles. Clench them really tight, like you’re showing off your six pack…clench, clench! And let it go soft. Aaah.

JESTINE: For the record, I’ve never had a six pack.

ASHA: Neither have I. I don’t think they actually exist. Okay, let’s move on to the arms. If you can, hunch your shoulders up to your ears. And now lock your arms out as stiff and straight as possible. Don’t forget about your hands and fingers! Make your hands into tight fists. Now, take a deep breath in and squeeze it all — the shoulders, arms, hands, fingers. Squeeze squeeze squeeze! And let it go aah.

JESTINE: Aaaah. That one was intense.

ASHA: I know, right? Feel free to do that one again if you want. And then meet us at the face. As you inhale, scrunch up all the muscles in your face and close your eyes as tight as you can. Scrunch up your lips, your cheeks, your nose, your eyebrows. Make everything teensy tinesy teensy tinesy. And… release. Phew!

JESTINE: I felt that one in my jaw.

ASHA: Yeah, I felt it in my teeth. Okay, you ready for the grand finale? We’re going to put it all together and tense up everything at once — the toes, the feet, the ankles, legs, stomach, shoulders, arms, hands, face. From the soles of your feet to the tippy top of your head. Squeezing everything you can. Even your ears. Can you do that? Can I? I don’t know. Worth a try, right?

Draw in a big, deep breath and tighten it all up. Tight tight tight. Hold it…! And release. Aaaah.


JESTINE: Wow. That was powerful. I feel like a floppy noodle now.

ASHA: Ha ha! That’s why I call it Noodle Time! 

JESTINE: I feel like even my neck is sort of noodly.

ASHA: Yay! It worked! And the cool thing is you can do this anywhere, any time. 

JESTINE: I’m totally gonna do this before my chemistry test tomorrow.

ASHA: Yes! Any time you’re feeling especially tight or anxious, angry or even bored, you can do this. It definitely helps me relax.

JESTINE: I love it. Thank you.

ASHA: Thank you for giving it a try. And thank you for coming along with us, Rebels.

JESTINE: Noodle time for the win!


This podcast is a production of Rebel Girls.

This episode was narrated by ME! Margaret Ying Drake as Asha, and Imani Parks as Jestine. It was produced and directed by Deborah Goldstein, with Joy Smith and Haley Dapkus. Sound design and mixing by Mumble Media. It was written and edited by Abby Sher. Fact checking by Joe Rhatigan, and Sensitivity Read by Schuyler Swenson. Our executive producers are Jes Wolfe and Joy Smith.

Original theme music was composed and performed by Elettra Bargiacchi.

A special thanks to the whole Rebel Girls team, who make this podcast possible!

Until next time, staaaay rebel!

If you like what you heard here and want to learn more, check out the newest book from Rebel Girls! Growing Up Powerful: A Guide to keeping confident when your body is changing, your mind is racing, and the world is…complicated. With stories from rebels all over the world and guidance from some brilliant experts, this book is our newest bff. Order your copy of Growing up Powerful today on Amazon or anywhere you purchase books!