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Lady Gaga's latest album Chromatica casts a light on the struggles of living with mental illness, and Gaga's passion for promoting positive conversations around mental health is spreading beyond her music to her new book, Channel Kindness: Stories of Kindness and Community. Featuring a collection of short personal stories submitted by young people, the book illustrates "the impact of kindness" and "encourages acceptance in the face of adversity."
The 300-page book is inspired by Gaga's own struggle to communicate her battle with mental illness to her mother growing up. "I didn't know how to stand up for myself without feeling embarrassed," she told People. "When I was younger and had mental issues, my mom didn't know how to communicate with me about it. We've found a way to channel kindness into our lives in a way that's also healed our relationship."
"If it inspires one act of kindness, then we've accomplished our mission. We can't do it alone, and here is a book that shows we aren't."
Each inspiring story within the book covers important topics that are often overlooked in the standard media we consume — the stigma around mental health, the effects of bullying, living with an autoimmune disease, being a member of the LGBTQ+ community, and more. Channel Kindness was created through the Born This Way Foundation, an organisation Gaga cofounded with her mother, Cynthia Bissett Germanotta, in 2012 to promote empathy, kindness, bravery, acceptance, and love in younger generations.
"Channel Kindness is an embodiment of the everyday acts of kindness that uplift communities and instill a sense of hope in each of us," Gaga said in a press release. "If it inspires one act of kindness, then we've accomplished our mission. We can't do it alone, and here is a book that shows we aren't."
The book also includes Gaga's personal notes of empowerment and will encourage readers to perform acts of kindness around their communities with the help of resources relevant to different stories. "My daughter and I believe in the power of kindness to transform our world and the potential of young people to lead that change," Germanotta said. "That's why we couldn't be more excited about Channel Kindness and the opportunity to share these stories from youth from around the world who remind us that acts of kindness – small and large – are shaping their communities in meaningful ways every day."
Gaga hopes the book will inspire others to share their stories and communicate with those around them to eliminate the stigma around mental health. "It is more important than ever that we channel kindness towards each other, for each other, and with each other in a vision for a kinder and braver world," Gaga said in an Instagram post promoting the book. Channel Kindess will be available in the US and UK beginning on Sept. 22. In the meantime, take a closer look at the book and pre-order a copy for yourself or a loved one here.