8 years. I’m not even sure what to say. Honestly, I don’t know where this year went. It went by so fast. Covid syndrome I guess. I wrote a book in the past year, “Getting to Neutral: Why Mindfulness Matters for Teens”, and I was the keynote speaker for the Broward Mental Health Summit, which was a great honor. To read about how I felt about the speech, the lessons I learned, and the impact it made on me: https://wufshanti.com/2021/09/14/mentalhealthkeynotespeech/
Every year on this day, which we call Wuf’s Birthday, I think about the origin of how all of this started, smile at memories, take stock in what we could have done better or different, and wonder in awe at how far we’ve come since the beginning. Some of it has been difficult, and some has been awesome. Honestly, because of Covid, I feel similar to how I felt last year. I still miss my grandpa and think of him every day, and I’m still grateful for all of my mentors and advisors, all the people that support Wuf Shanti, and all the groups that I’ve been asked to speak to. To read the post from Wuf’s 7th birthday, all of which is still relevant, accurate, and true: https://wufshanti.com/2020/09/16/happy-birthday-wuf-shanti/
As I write this, I am 17, and filling out college applications, wondering where life will take me and what I will be doing going forward in my life. Ideally, I think I would like to try to merge my two passions, mental health and broadcasting. Maybe I can help athletes with their mental health and create a TV show around it, where I can interview athletes, like Simone Biles, about mental health and how they cope.
This is really appealing because athletes are role models to so many kids and teens. If we begin to share these things openly on television, and the kids and teens watch, then it may help to end the stigma and help people understand that they are not alone and it’s ok to feel what they feel.
Maybe it will have the added benefit of encouraging schools to finally implement mindfulness-based social emotional curriculum to help teach coping mechanisms. Just like math and science are mandatory, I still believe that teaching ways to deal with stress and strong emotions should be mandatory too. We all have to deal with stress at some point in our lives, so how great would it be if we learned how to navigate that stress while still in school. I think the world would be a much kinder and safer place. Write your school board if you agree.
Using our voice(s) matters. It feels like we’ve evolved together, and I know we will continue to evolve together. I want to thank everyone for their support and love while on this journey. May you be healthy and well, Adam