Wellness and "WAP": 2020 Survival Stories

2020 has easily been one of the hardest years we’ve all come by. From politics to pandemics, the past 10 months have been a series of highs and lows that keep coming up on every corner. To navigate through this rollercoaster of a year, wellness has unknowingly creeped into the daily lives of people all around the world, as baking banana bread and doing home workouts brought a newfound peace of mind.

Our 2020 Survival Stories aim to shed a little light on how different people have been trying to find that peace. Kicking it off, our first edition shows how two 20-year-old roommates maintained some sanity throughout it all.

Not Doing it Alone

Tala, 21, and Akemi, 20, are students at the Berklee College of Music that, like all students around the world, were thrown into a whirlwind of Zoom classes and online assignments overnight. When asked about self-care methods they’ve been practicing to navigate through their abruptly changed world, Tala shared that cooking and binging true crime shows have definitely helped her a lot. While Akemi on the other hand, shared that yoga, meditation, and journaling have been her go-to self-care methods.

While they have individual self-care practices, Tala and Akemi also found support in doing some new things together. Cooking for each other (specifically tuna pasta), watching Gossip Girl, and venting about what’s on their minds have especially been key to survival.

Bringing Music to Life

Another thing that really helped them navigate through this year was music. Akemi shared that she wrote her entire EP during quarantine, as it helped her find some productivity and emotional relief in an overwhelmingly uncertain time, with Tala adding on that music gives them a sense of purpose. The girls also recommend listening to The Beatles, Dua Lipa, Doja Cat, and “WAP” if you want a little pick me up during your day.

Lessons Learned

With the year coming to a close, the two reflected on everything they’ve learned over the past few months. “Everything we knew fell apart,” Tala said. “We all assumed that givens in our lives were just going to be there, but really nothing in life is granted.” To which Akemi added “We all lost so many things, this year was insane for everyone, but the beauty of 2020 for me is that we all learned to deal with it together.”

Solidarity, gratitude, and growth were three key pillars that Tala and Akemi built over the year. Within a swirl of negativity and uncertainty, the girls found comfort in each other, music, conversation, and Chuck Bass, going to show the true scope of what wellness can be.

Tala & Akemi's Survival Packet

Here are some resources inspired by Tala and Akemi’s 2020 survival packet that we think you should try: