People with limitations are well aware of their own limitations especially if it is obvious. You don’t want to treat people with limitations as if they are on a list or try and go out of your way to isolate them. Treat them like you would treat anyone else; someone who deserves respect, love, and attention. This will make them feel validated.
As a part of our “Unstoppable” series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Kojo Sarfo, DNP.
Dr. Kojo Sarfo, DNP, PMHNP-BC is a mental health nurse practitioner, a psychotherapist, published Author of “You Already Won,” and social media content creator, with over a million followers on all of his social media channels (TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, Twitch, Triller).
He posts skits, songs, and videos in order to bring people together and to promote mental health awareness. On his TikTok channel, he uses relevant trends and popular music to educate individuals about mental health conditions and the importance of self-care.
He is also the podcast host of What’s Good with Dr. Kojo, Hollywood’s #1 Mental Health Podcast!
Thank you so much for doing this with us! It is really an honor. Our readers would love to get to know you a bit better. Can you share your “backstory” with us?
My name is Dr. Kojo Sarfo, I am a clinical ADHD specialist, board-certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, and psychotherapist. I’m also a full-time content creator, who recently moved to Los Angeles, and I use social media internet to inspire people through mental health awareness and education.
Prior to doing full-time content creation full time, I was doing forensic psychiatry working in Virginia. In that role, I was able to advocate for individuals with both severe mental illness and criminal backgrounds.
Currently, I use my online platform to currently advocate for individuals online by promoting mental health awareness and education. With having a diagnosis of ADHD myself, I am passionate about discussing conditions like ADHD, and how it affects people throughout various parts of their lives.
Do you feel comfortable sharing with us the story surrounding how you received your diagnosis of ADHD? What mental shift did you make to not let that “stop you”?
I speak frequently about my experience with having ADHD, and how that has affected me throughout my life. It is something I knew I had early on as a child, but because of the lack of resources and the lack of education my parents had surrounding mental health conditions, I wasn’t diagnosed until I was 25. Through my experience as both someone with a diagnosis and a clinician, it has enabled me and given me a platform to inspire millions of people around the world, and I’m excited to be able to push this message through my videos.
Can you tell our readers about the accomplishments you have been able to make despite your diagnosis?
I am very vocal about having ADHD, and I tell all my followers that you don’t have to let your situation or your mental condition prevent you from achieving your dreams.
I currently have the number one psychiatry personal brand in the world with over 1.8 million followers. I have written an Amazon best-selling book, and I was also named as a distinguished alumnus from my University, the University of West Alabama. I achieved all of these things despite having a condition which that frustrates a lot of people on a daily basis.
What advice would you give to other people who have disabilities or limitations?
The advice I would give to people who have disabilities or limitations is that sometimes we have certain parts of ourselves that we may not like. Or parts of ourselves that make it hard for us to be as productive as we would like to be. But if you do the best that you can every single day and do not judge yourself or allow others’ judgments of you to affect you, you’ll be surprised at all of the amazing things that you’ll be able to accomplish.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are?
Most definitely, there are so many people that have helped me get to where I am today. In particular, my mother and my father, and my five siblings have been so instrumental and helpful and helped me get to where I am today. Also, my online community has been a driving force and keeps me motivated, and inspired me to make the best possible content.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
By having such a large online following, I’m able to advocate for people who are struggling with conditions that they may struggle to discuss this My hope is that I help to give them a voice and make them feel less alone. I believe also helps to create a sense of community, allowing people to have a safe space whereby they can be their best selves, where they can share and learn from one another.
Can you share “5 things I wish people understood or knew about people with physical limitations” and why?
Yes, so there are a few things that I wish people understood about certain limitations.
- I wish people knew that sometimes they may have friends who have certain limitations that do not appear to be obvious, but they’re still there regardless. So it is important to recognize that we all have to be kind because you never know what someone’s going through.
- Even though somebody may have a physical limitation, they are still a human being that is worthy of respect and love. It’s important to recognize that all humans are worthy, and all humans deserve basic respect, attention, and love. regardless of whatever limitation they may have.
- People with limitations are well aware of their own limitations especially if it is obvious. You don’t want to treat people with limitations as if they are on a list or try and go out of your way to isolate them. Treat them like you would treat anyone else; someone who deserves respect, love, and attention. This will make them feel validated.
- Sometimes people with physical limitations may need certain provisions. Look, and listen, ask them what they need or how you can help them out. This may seem a small task, but it will go a long way.
- I wish people understood that individuals have physical limitations, whether they are obvious or not. That these same individuals are some of the most empathetic human beings because by having their own struggles, and they are able to see things from a different lens. They tend to be very thoughtful and empathetic when it comes to other people because they have real-life experiences struggling with limitations. Be empathetic.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”?
My favorite life lesson quote is from Wayne Gretskey, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” This quote keeps me driven, it allows me to recognize that, as long as I try, I can be proud of myself.
We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this 🙂
Yeah, I would love to have lunch with Kanye West. He has been in the media a lot for various reasons. He has spoken about mental health and his own struggles. And he is a talented musician. I feel as if he i’s somebody who was misunderstood by the public. I would love to speak to him and ask him about why he is so passionate about mental health awareness and why he feels it’s important to talk about his own life and his own struggles, through his music, and the effect that it has on certain people. I think that would be pretty cool to just talk to him and just pick his brain and thank him for his advocacy on his end.
Unstoppable: How Dr. Kojo Sarfo has redefined success while navigating society with ADHD was originally published in Authority Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.