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Home » AnneMarie Rossi: Why Aren’t We Teaching You Mindfulness at TEDxYouth@MileHigh (Transcript)

AnneMarie Rossi: Why Aren’t We Teaching You Mindfulness at TEDxYouth@MileHigh (Transcript)

AnneMarie Rossi

Here is the full transcript of AnneMarie Rossi’s TEDx Talk: Why Aren’t We Teaching You Mindfulness at TEDxYouth@MileHigh conference.


Harvard conducted a research study and they tracked more than 1,000 people from birth until age 32, looking for what made someone successful. What common characteristic or trait was seen in a successful individual? It wasn’t their race, what language they spoke, what neighborhood they grow up in, or how much money their parents had.

It wasn’t how well they did on standardized tests, or even their IQ. It was self-control. Those who were successful, who had good careers, financial stability, loving relationships, and physical health, were the ones who could focus, pay attention, and regulate their emotions. They were the ones to practice mindfulness. It doesn’t matter if I give you all the shiniest new iPads, and Stephen Hawkings is teaching you Math, if you can’t focus and pay attention, how well will you do?

Mindfulness is the foundation for all other learning, for all success you will have throughout your entire life. So I ask you, why, if we know that this is the single most important predictor of success for human beings, why aren’t we teaching it to you? Mindfulness exercises are designed to train your brain to have focus, attention, and emotional regulation. There’s mindful listening, eating, breathing, movement; it’s a way of engaging in the present moment, without attachment and without judgment.

Mindfulness is grounded in more than 30 years of scientific study, most major universities in the world, Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Yale, Oxford and Cambridge, just to name a few, teach and/or research this practice. In fact, Oxford has a Master’s Degree in mindfulness. This isn’t religion, this isn’t hippie nonsense, this isn’t some idea I came up with in my backyard.

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