Once an alcoholic, this professor now steers youth de-addiction programs

Once an alcoholic, this professor now steers youth de-addiction programs

Professor Dr. Purushottam Wayal was once an alcoholic. He fought his odds with extraordinary courage and went on to become a charismatic social worker and leader of the masses. Dr. Wayal reflects on his poignant journey that has inspired him to transform the lives of thousands of youth and villagers across Maharashtra.

Early days

Hailing from Watur near Jalna in Maharashtra, Dr. Wayal was brought up in a simple middle-class family with moral values. After completing his doctorate in Indian political thought – Lala Lajpat Rai – he joined a degree college as a professor and settled down in life like any other householder.

“Life sailed smoothly for me until I started compromising on my values,” he revealed, adding, “As I progressed in my career and was prosperous, my circle of friends changed and from a simpleton, I became an arrogant man. I started casting aspersions on people and mocking them. Late night parties became a habit and soon, I was downing liquor. People would often find me in an inebriated state.”

Moments of despair

Within no time, Dr. Wayal had become an alcoholic. He squandered huge amounts of money on alcohol and resorted to other addictions as well.  But all these only led him into depression.

“Matters reached a flashpoint when I completely lost track of my life. On one hand, I felt guilty that I was tarnishing the reputation of my family and college. On the other hand, I indulged in drinking to relieve myself from anxiety and tension,” Dr. Wayal said.

A ray of hope

The next 11 years saw Dr. Wayal’s life go on a downward spiral. He was lost and frustrated.

“It was around this time that life took an unexpected turn,” he said, adding. “I chanced upon a stress-elimination program offered by The Art of living. The six-day workshop not only cured me of insomnia but proved to be a life-transforming experience. For the first time in 11 years, I slept soundly,” remarked Dr. Wayal.

The big transition

After this program, he said there was no looking back. He started abstaining from alcohol and put himself on a healthy diet. Gradually, he outgrew his vices and focused on his life and work.

“The shift did not happen overnight. Moreover, the techniques I learned in the workshop gave me a lot of confidence and solace. I also underwent youth leadership training programs that imbued me with different life skills. I was marveled to see my energy levels double up within a span of 12 days,” Dr. Wayal said.

Within two months, Dr. Wayal was completely free of all vices. He took complete charge of his life and looked much younger than age.

His life goal had changed. He was now a changed man. “My focus was now to gather misguided youths who were hardcore addicts or alcoholics and inspire them,” he added.

Empowering the youth

Dr. Wayal began with the youth leadership training programs, which aimed at strengthening the youth at an emotional, spiritual, and mental level.

“In Maharashtra itself, we have catered to thousands of addicted youth in several villages. We have received an overwhelming response. I have been working in a village named Selu in Maharashtra with youths and villagers. Over 40,000 people have been inspired to become catalysts of change. They have quit alcohol, given up nefarious activities and are working towards building a better community. My objective is to empower each and every youth in rural areas and create self-reliant villages,” he shared.

A winner all the way

Recently, Dr. Wayal’s noteworthy contribution to the society was recognized by prestigious social organizations of Maharashtra.

“Indeed it was a proud moment for me and my family. The certificate of merit is a testimony to the transformation that has happened in the society. I want to continue working with more vigor and enthusiasm,” he said.

Giving his hundred percent in anything that he does is his secret for all the achievements.

“As a child, I played with hundred percent energy, even when I was consuming alcohol, I was doing it hundred percent and now that I am focused on my work, I am dedicated hundred percent,” he beamed.

Dr. Wayal’s faith in youth and their potential is strengthened with the tools he has discovered to accelerate their transformation.

“Youths have tremendous potential to change the destiny of a nation. Unfortunately, today a large number of them are reeling under pressure, are victims of drug abuse or alcohol and are indulging in anti-social activities. But we are tirelessly working to channelize these youth energies in the right direction. The resurgence of youth power will ensure a clean, stress-free and corrupt-free India. My dream is to take India to new heights on the global platform. We are certainly moving a few notches higher every day,” said Dr. Wayal.

Story Credit: Art of Living Bureau of Communications