Being Mindful of the Masks We Wear

The first step to being our most authentic selves is investigating which of our qualities we’re willing to show the world, and which we’d rather hide.

When I came back from India after that long trip teaching math, I began teaching my students meditation and I realized that my students didn’t understand meditation, just like I didn’t when I was in high school. I started doing this once a week. I said we’re going to start with one minute and we’re going to just sit quietly with our eyes closed. I’m going to turn the light off. My students had such a hard time with just one minute, and I was like okay well next week we’ll do another minute, and the next week we’ll add another minute. Practice on your own if you want but we’ll just do it, we’ll add one minute every week. I got to the point where around week seven I was focused on teaching math so I forgot about meditation, and a student asked what was up with our meditation? How amazing is it that? I have forgotten but this young man had decided that he was getting something out of it and wanted to meditate again. That’s when I began to realize that we can all learn to do this.

It doesn’t take anything special, I’m not a special…

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About the author

Ashanti Branch

Ashanti Branch is the founder and executive director of The Ever Forward Club. In 2004, during Ashanti’s first year teaching high school math, he started The Ever Forward Club to provide support for African American and Latino males in school. He works to change how students, especially young men of color, interact with their education and how their schools interact with them. Since then, Ever Forward has helped all of it’s more than 150 members graduate from high school.

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