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Mindful : October 2017
Both for its impressive work (100% of the foundation’s kids graduate from high school; 95% of its leadership partici- pants receive and accept full college scholarships) and for the deep connections of its founder, the foundation has gained a lot of attention. It also boasts numerous influential friends and supporters. Las Vegas resident and former heavyweight boxing cham- pion Mike Tyson is a regular visitor. ABC news repor ter and author Dan Harris invited kids from the foundation to the set of Good Morning America. They’ve met senators and a president. A few have served as “ambassadors” to Rich- ard Branson’s Necker Cup Pro-Am Tennis Event, which has named ICF its charity partner four times. And now due to its collaboration with Jewel, the singer-songwriter is a frequent presence. “In the end, our long- term goal is to help our was willing to invest in me, so I had to invest in myself,” she tells an auditorium full of finance execs at SALT.) And once again I’m awed by the power of mindfulness. To think that this beautiful, intel- ligent, and grounded woman once felt so alone and traumatized with fear that she was afraid to get out of her car—and yet was able to find confi- dence, courage, and, yeah, happiness, by tuning into her thoughts and challenging those that kept her feeling diminished, deeply moves me. Mind before Money Now 43 and mom to her bright and curious son with ex-husband Ty Murray, a retired rodeo star, Jewel has far different concerns—like how to raise a down-to-earth kid in the midst of celebrity privilege, how to maintain her career without having to tour all the time, and how to make a larger contribution in a way that feels authentic and useful. And early on, after so many years of trying to find a safe place within herself, she chose to put being happy and healthy—in mind and body— before the pursuit of money or fame, something she recognized from the beginning as a “trap,” she says. “Opportunity doesn’t directly equal success,” Jewel says, acknowledging the huge number of people who become famous but lose themselves in one way or another. “I made sure that my first job was to be a whole human. Being a musician came second.” It’s this philosophy that underscores the new chapter in her professional evolution. “Music has been the soundtrack to my mindfulness practice, the practice of How do I evolve, how do I change?” she says. “Now I’m interested in what I can offer beyond what I’ve been talking about → youth become professionals in life and to find peace of mind, so they can share this wisdom with their family, friends, and communities as leaders and examples of extraordinary living,” the ICF website explains. Or as Wolfington is fond of saying, “We’re not in the business of good or even great. We are in the business of extraordinary.” “You can’t entitle children,” he elaborates. “You have to give them an oppor tunity to earn it for themselves. And when you do, I don’t have to compliment you. You already have that compliment inside.” PHOTOGRAPHCOURTESYOFINSPIRINGCHILDRENFOUNDATION Jewel recognized early in her career that fame could be a trap. “Opportunity doesn’t directly equal success,” she says. “I made sure that my first job was to be a whole human. Being a musician came second.” Jewel with Aramoana Elmore, a participant in the Inspiring Children Foundation, where she serves as a mentor. “I really want to help kids create a gap between what they perceive and what they act on, to put them in the driver’s seat and become the architects of their lives,” she says. October 2017 mindful 67