Mel Jones on being Motivational Philosopher, Lifestyle Entrepreneur, and Author
Mel Jones is ready to fire you up and shift your thinking to give you the edge to win. He is the creator of the motivational factory called Grip Work Gear.
Awesome Mel, thanks so much for doing this interview! Let’s get started!
Where were you born and raised, what was childhood like, and what did you want to be when you ‘grew up?’
I was born in San Antonio, Texas but was almost birthed in Spain due to where my mother was stationed during her pregnancy.
I grew up in a military family with 2 younger brothers, a sister, my father (who was former Army) and quickly grew accustomed to moving from place to place with my mother as she received new orders from the Air Force.
I’ve lived in many places within the United States including Hawaii, Maryland, Louisiana, Virginia, as well as outside of the country on the Osan military base in South Korea.
Though we moved quite a bit, I was never sad to leave any particular place because I was always interested in experiencing the ideas and habits a new group of individuals had to offer.
And though it is typically more conducive to the progression of one’s sports career to be raised in one particular area as you mature, I always kept the dream of one day becoming an NFL player when I grew up and never really worried about the setbacks of constantly relocating and the process of re-proving myself to the coaches native to that area.
What did your parents do for a living and was there any Entrepreneurship in the family?
My mother was in the Air Force all of my childhood and retired after 20 plus years when I was in college. My father was in the Army when he met my mother and retired early after they married.
From there, my father got involved in many professions dealing with indoor plumbing, security work overseas and domestic, automobile sales, commercial product transportation and a few other areas that I was too young to remember.
Obviously, neither one of my parents were Entrepreneurs and there aren’t too many long standing ones in the rest of my family, but we’ve always had the mind for it. Meaning, most of the people in my family are all-for Entrepreneurship and believe in it, though very few participate in the practice.
When did you start Grip Work Gear, and who is it for?
I started Grip Work Gear in August 2015. At the time, I was a full-time personal trainer at American Family Fitness in Williamsburg, Virginia and had been giving motivational speeches as the local Motivational Philosopher.
Originally, Grip Work Gear was meant to be a motivational clothing company and I marketed it as such until the summer of 2016 when I published my book “90: Building The Ultimate Empire.”
I decided then to combine the company with my fitness coaching and motivational speaking, making Grip Work Gear a Powerful Motivation Company.
The question I get a lot now is who are you and your company motivating? Well, I’m really not motivating, I’m teaching. Grip Work Gear is meant to aid in the development of people’s thinking so that they may more profoundly Master the inner workings of their mind, Optimize the strength and health of their body, and Maximize their success in every facet they feel is important to them.
So, if you want to know who it’s for, it’s for anybody looking to improve the quality of their life. It’s for anybody looking for a reason to put in the time to make changes to how they do or see things. It’s for all ages because you’re never too old to learn or make a mistake, you’re never too young to build a healthier body, and you’re never too busy to create more success for yourself.
You are a motivational philosopher and have spoke at many prestigious venues, including on the podcast Entrepreneur on Fire. What is your message and who is your audience?
Personally, my message is to Live In Fulfillment Everyday and that is how I spell LIFE. As for my company, the goal is to build an army of powerful thinkers, meaning a world of people who constantly think critically and creatively about everyday that they are alive.
In both instances, my own personal message or through my companies’s mission, I am looking to touch everybody’s mind because the elders are not done living or teaching, the youth has too much potential to waste on just instantly gratifying activities, and the middle aged group (roughly 25-65) does not have to be a victim to the responsibilities of life.
How do I know this? Because I have found stories of individuals in every category who have taken full advantage of their life’s potential.
You state on your blog that your mission is “to create an army of powerful thinkers.” How do people normally think, and how do you help them switch it?
The average person thinks in a realm they can easily understand and accept with little turbulence from their environment.
Now, this level of thinking varies from person to person because people have different personalities, grow up in different environments, and are exposed to different experiences, but essentially everybody fits themselves into some sort of a group or subgroups where they spend most of their lives thinking in congruence with the rest of its members.
Basically, we search for a way to see and be in the world and once we have found it, we stick to it as long as we can. We close our minds to other possibilities or take many years to change our perspective on things. Our belief systems, right or wrong, are typically based on 1 or 2 layers of depth of information.
A good example is religion. Most people become Christian or Muslim based on their parents religious beliefs.
Some people become Atheist because of one bad experience with a religious person. In these cases we are not being powerful thinkers because we made a finite decision that we are not willing to change no matter what new evidence or information may arise.
I want to create an army of powerful thinkers because I want as many people as possible looking at each day with a new lense and perspective of the world so that we may grow closer in conformity with one another by gaining a greater understanding of the universe and how each person is experiencing it.
The method I use to help people make these new mental connections is by forcing people to imagine situations that metaphorically relate to them. I also create a feeling of empathy within their hearts that they would otherwise never feel on their own.
I am naturally an empathetic person, though not always sympathetic. By walking a person’s mind down a lane they personally understand, I can synchronize their emotional mind with that of the subject matter, ultimately bringing them to an enlightened state of awareness.
In the end, I help paint the big picture that couldn’t be detected before, walking my audience into a new critical thinking perspective and igniting new possibilities in their world.
You have an awesome YouTube channel called “The Motivational Philosopher.” You have mental mastery and body optimization videos. How important is getting both mind and body healthy simultaneously?
Understanding that the mind and the body are the same thing because the brain is connected directly to all parts of the body and acts as just another organ in one intricate system, we know that you cannot affect the body without affecting the mind and vice versa.
We also realize that the mind/body is affected in multiple ways which include movement, environment, information, nutrition, and thoughts.
We want to be as healthy as possible, ideally, and in order to do that we must work on all of these areas at the same time.
In short, it’s important to practice healthy habits that directly affect the so-called body as well as the others that affect the so-called mind in order to live our most fulfilling and balanced life. Your greatest human potential and understanding is predicated off of this.
What does your video “Eat Electric” talk about, and do you recommend increasing the PH level in our bodies by drinking ionized water, and eating raw and organic?
My “Eat Electric” video focuses on the principle of consuming more living foods filled with minerals to help the body conduct more electricity so that we will operate more efficiently.
This is why we need metals like iron and copper in our diet for they are electrical conductors. This is why we need to drink electrolytes, hence the prefix “electro.”
This is why we need water and oxygen (when we breathe) everyday because water is a conductor of electricity and so is wind.
I’m not going to say that we need to raise or lower our bodies PH level per-say because proteins are very key to a human beings diet and as we all know proteins are made up of amino ACIDS. What we want is a balance.
You definitely want to drink non-acidic water and water free of harmful heavy metals or chemicals. There is a lot of controversy when it comes to ionized water and the machines vary from company to company.
For myself, I use a heavy metal filter to clean the tap water and then sprinkle some Himalayan/Celtic salt for my mineral intake.
You can also buy bottled water, just make sure it says spring water that way you know it still has its minerals intact.
If you feel more comfortable getting distilled water, just make sure that you put a pinch of Himalayan/Celtic salt in it to replace the minerals that were stripped away so that the water doesn’t strip away that minerals from your own body.
If you want to make sure your water is closer to alkaline, you can just squeeze half of a lemon or key lime per gallon of water.
It goes without saying that eating more raw and organic foods is going to benefit our bodies tremendously, especially in the process of maintaining homeostasis. Organic foods are going to maintain more nutritional integrity and raw foods are going to give us the much needed live enzymes that our bodies need in order to fully utilize the minerals that we intake.
You have an awesome self-development book called “90: Building the Ultimate Empire. Can you tell us a little about that?
My book 90 is a 90-chapter, 90-day powerful thinking manual that focuses on 2 major themes. Positive thinking and personal responsibility. I don’t directly say it, but I indirectly explain how and why in every chapter.
The reason why I wrote 90 chapters dealing with the same ideology is because the mind will easily give you 90 reasons why you can’t or shouldn’t do something that you really wish you could do, when in reality they are all indirectly telling you why you should be too afraid to take the necessary steps to execute your mission.
They say it takes 90 days to build a new habit, so I wrote 90 seemingly different chapters to help people build a new powerful thinking habit that way they may attack their limiting and self-destructive thoughts from 90 different angles.
I love your blog! How old is it, how many posts are on it, and what is your daily traffic like?
My blog is roughly 3 years old, has currently 335 published articles, and receives around 50 views a day. It is the diversity of my blog that hurts my viewership because I never have given into the concept of sticking to one subject matter.
In other words, I don’t resonate with the idea of sticking to Mastering just one thing or one subject because nobody wants to be great at just one area in their life and neither do I.
Essentially, we are all looking for balance and that to me means mastering all of the areas that we feel is important to us.
To me fitness is important, nutrition is too, so is family, relationships, finances, career, selling, leadership, communication, wealth creation, teaching, emotional intelligence, healing and motivation. It makes me seem like I’m a jack of all trades and a Master of nothing, but in reality I’m learning to Master my life and sharing that with the world.
What is your favorite book right now and why?
My favorite book to-date is Robert Greene’s “The Art of Seduction.”
I remember all of the funny looks I would get when reading it in public, as if I was some sort to of pervert, but I knew this was only due to the ignorance and fear of most people.
In that book, I did not learn how to seduce people at will, I learned the essence of human nature. “The Art of Seduction” is a revealing of man’s greatest strength and weakness.
Greene gives many accounts and well documented examples of the many types of seducers and the rolls they have played throughout history. He exposes how seduction is not just a sexual thing, it is a political and business practice as well.
To seduce is to make something or someone attractive. Sometimes we are the seducer and other times we are victims of it, but that’s ok. What’s not ok is being to scared to learn about the art so that you may understand it when you encounter it.
To me, the book is more of a shield than a sword, equipping me with the foresight to see a person’s true intentions. This book takes you consciously to a place few dare to go and that’s what makes it powerful.
What are your goals for 2017?
My goals this year are simple. Read 50 books, give 100 speeches, publish an international best-seller, post 100 blogs, write my third book, win the toastmasters international public speaking competition, and earn $150,ooo in revenue. Will I reach them all, I don’t know, but I’m excited and determined to find out.
What is your favorite quote and why?
My favorite quote is from Will Smith who said “Don’t let successes go to your head and don’t let failures go to your heart.”
To me, that’s the definition of balance. It reminds me that there is still room to grow and that nothing is set in stone.
In the middle of all emotions are beliefs and principles. If you stick to those no matter what you accomplish and no matter where you fall short, you will live a life of perpetual growth and progression.
Thank you so much for this interview Mel!
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Erik Christian Johnson