Hey Guys, Check out this interview with Jonathan mead, an entrepreneur, a writer, a coach, martial artist and the founder of the amazing blog illuminated mind.
Hope you enjoy the interview.
Hey Jonathan, how are you doing?
I'm doing good, thanks for asking. And thanks for having me here.
Can you give us some quick background information about yourself, what you do now?
Sure. I'm a writer, entrepreneur, coach and a martial artist. I'm most interested in helping other people break free from limiting structures to help them live on their own terms.
How did you start blogging and start Illuminated Mind, what inspired you?
What first inspired me was finding a way to give back to the self development community. I felt like I had benefited so much and wanted to find a way that I could contribute and share the knowledge that I had gained.
As time went on, my motivation shifted a bit. I saw that a certain group of people weren't being targeted or spoken to very much when it came to self development; people that were off the beaten path, that questioned authority, and the structures society has created to limit us. I came from a similar background, so I wanted to see if I could speak more directly to that audience, and that's how I wound up where I am today.
How have you been able to grow your blog? Creating awareness and getting quality readers?
I try as best as I can to be remarkable, to not do what everyone else is doing. I don't want to compete with everyone by trying to do the same things they're doing better. I want to do something totally different so that competition is obsolete.
How much time do you spend for your blog?
Since my blog is my business I spend a lot of time on it. Since I'm self-employed, the amount of time varies a lot week-by-week. It could be 15 hours one week and 50 hours the next. It really depends.
What books would you suggest reading for anyone interested in the topics you blog about?
From which people have you learned the most or which people are kind of role models for you?
I've learned from anyone that follows their heart and lives deliberately; anyone who sets out to be excellent, or genuinely wants to serve others.
What are your main sources of inspiration for your articles?
Living and experience. I get most of my inspiration from just doing and trying different things. A lot of it comes from lessons that I've learned or shifts in my thinking that have made a big difference in my life.
Tell me about your book “Reclaim Your Dreams: An Uncommon Guide to Living on Your Own Terms.” What inspired you to write it?
A lot of people want to follow their dreams, but they don't think that their dreams are practical. There seems to be a battle of head vs. heart, and for some reason the head always wins. People end up old and in regret that they didn't follow their heart. No one lays on their deathbed wishing they were more productive or practical. They always wish they did the things that called to their heart.
I personally had the same issue. I had dreams of being self employed, being a writer, a martial artist and other things. But my mind told me that they weren't practical. That I would fail, that I didn't deserve it, and a whole host of other obsolete and unimportant reasons.
My goal was to create a road map out of that limiting pattern of living, and find a way not to dethrone the mind and crown the heart, but to integrate them and let them rule together. So that's what Reclaim Your Dreams is. It's a guide to helping you make peace between heart and mind and find a way to actually make your dreams a reality; to let them take root in the world.
How can someone get it right with self-education? I see a lot of people that read a lot of self help books that end up all confused.
Maybe it's a lack of critical thinking. To be honest, I'm not sure. I think some people read self-help book after self-help book because they want to find that magical hidden answer that will make everything work automatically, with no effort on their part. They're always looking for a better strategy. But the perfect strategy doesn't exist. The perfect strategy is practice.
You went through a period of addiction; how were you able to come out of that?
I got tired of trying to find happiness somewhere outside of myself. I had to go through that in order to really understand that you can only find happiness within yourself. You can't get in it a pill, a drug, material things, or passive entertainment. It has to be something you decide deliberately.
What areas of your life have most improved since you started this journey?
Every area, honestly. I no longer see the different areas of my life as separate or distinct. Any time one area of my life improves, so do the others. The more I move toward integration, the more this becomes true for me.
What Motivates You? What inspires you?
Being excellent and the desire to express my fullest potential motivates me the most. A lot of things inspire me, especially people that have followed their dreams and have reached their potential. That could be anyone from a great basketball player to an amazing drummer to an incredible martial artist.
Do you have a goal of how many books you must read in a month?
I used to have goals like that, but I found them to be very unmeaningful to me. The more I place quotas and quantify my goals, the less motivated I become. Instead, I try to focus on meaning before measurement.
I generally read at least two or three books a month, though, sometimes more.
How has networking online and offline helped you or your business? How essential do you think it is?
I'm not big on the word "networking;" I prefer to call it building relationships. And I think it's absolutely essential. I know some people that have built their businesses simply on referrals and relationships. It's huge, and something I think most beginners neglect.
Something that has been me bugging for a while is balance. How do you keep balance and maintain focus? It’s so easy to get carried away.
This is another one of those things that I used to find highly important, and now don't pay much attention to it. I've made a conscious effort to create a life where balance is irrelevant.
Since my work, life, relationships, and interests are all interrelated, I don't have to try to balance them. I think balance is overrated. Instead of trying to find balance, I say create a life where balance isn't necessary. Create a life where no part of your life conflicts with the other.
What was that one thing that kept you going when things weren’t going your way?
Hunger. If you're not consumed by a deep hunger or passion, it's easy to let things that don't go your way deter you. But if you've committed yourself 100% to your pursuit, nothing can get in your way.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I'm not too sure. I tend not to plan more than six months in advance. Planning further than that adds a level of rigidity to my life that stifles me. I also don't think it's really possible to plan that far. Things will come up that you're not able to predict. I'd rather be like water, flexible and ready to follow whatever course is presented to me.
Thanks for your time Jonathan
Thanks, it was my pleasure.