Interview for Authority Magazine: February 2024

Nick likes to share

Stars Making a Social Impact: Why & How Nick Bracks Is Helping To Change Our World

I would say try as many things as you can while you are young. Fall flat on your face. Make mistakes. We learn far more from failure than from succeeding. I found my purpose by trying multiple things and I recommend doing the same if you are not sure what path to go down.

Asa part of our series about stars who are making an important social impact, I had the pleasure of interviewing Nick Bracks.

Nick Bracks is an Australian media personality, broadcaster, entrepreneur, philanthropist, actor, published author, and public speaker who has delivered several TED talks and 1,000+ public speaking engagements over the last 15 years. He currently hosts his own segment ‘Soul Trader’ on Australian DAB+ radio station, Disrupt Radio.

Thank you so much for joining us on this interview series. Can you share with us the backstory that led you to this career path?

Iam an Australian media personality, broadcaster, entrepreneur, philanthropist, actor, published author, and public speaker who has delivered several TED talks and 1,000+ public speaking engagements over the last 15 years. I currently host my own segment ‘Soul Trader’ on Australian DAB+ radio station, Disrupt Radio.

I am also the founder of digital mental health software company, MYND (Move Your Mind Pty Ltd), and the ‘Move Your Mind with Nick Bracks’ podcast. I played ‘Brandon Danker’ on Australian soap opera Neighbours and appeared in a number of reality television shows including Dancing with the Stars. I have also co-founded several start ups, including my own underwear label, ‘underBRACKS’, & publicly traded health company, Biome Ltd.

Growing up in a prominent Australian political family, I was exposed to life in the public eye since he was 12 years old. Struggling to cope with depression & anxiety through substance abuse, I first gained his own notoriety in my early 20s through a publicly documented car crash that nearly killed my best friend and myself.

The drunk driving incident became a catalyst for to turn my life around, exposing my mental health issues and allowing me to receive the help I desperately needed. The media attention I gained after the crash led to a career in modelling, followed by an invitation to participate as a celebrity contestant on ‘Dancing With The Stars’ in 2011. While on Dancing With The Stars, I took the opportunity to speak publicly about my battle with depression & anxiety, becoming a pioneer in mental health advocacy.

Today, 970 million people around the world are suffering from debilitating mental health issues, yet don’t know how to take that first step to get help. I was once one of those people, wrestling with alcohol abuse, severe anxiety, depression, and ADHD from a young age. With the right support, I turned my life around. These experiences gave me the compassion & impetus to dedicate my life toward helping others through public speaking, my podcast, publishing a self- help book, and launching a digital mental health start-up company.

My ultimate goal is to normalize the conversation around mental health and to share a science-based path that people can follow to achieve a healthy mindset for a sustainable life.

It has been said that our mistakes can be our greatest teachers. Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

When I was starting I was naive and didn’t listen to people. I thought I could do 10 different things at once and was trying to start multiple companies with no experience or support. I very quickly learnt the value of advice and clarity of pursuing one core thing at a time.

What would you advise a young person who wants to emulate your success?

I would say try as many things as you can while you are young. Fall flat on your face. Make mistakes. We learn far more from failure than from succeeding. I found my purpose by trying multiple things and I recommend doing the same if you are not sure what path to go down.

Is there a person that made a profound impact on your life? Can you share a story?

My Uncle Bruce. He has now passed away but was the most important person in my life. He is the one person who always believed in me, ever since I was a little kid wanting to become a professional athlete. He mentored me, would practice with me and was my constant guide and voice of support. It made all of the difference. I now have his name tattooed on my wrist.

How are you using your success to bring goodness to the world? Can you share with us the meaningful or exciting causes you’re working on right now?

I have spent the past 13 years sharing my story and raising awareness for mental health. I continue to do this, along with running a mental health and wellbeing tech company called MYND, by Move Your Mind Pty Ltd.

Can you share with us a story behind why you chose to take up this particular cause?

My personal experience and story, as described at the beginning of this article, is what put a fire inside of me to follow this cause.

Can you share with us a story about a person who was impacted by your cause?

A few years back, I ran a week-long seminar for a large group of employees working at a suburban manufacturing company. As we finished up the last session for the week, I was approached by one of the workers. He was a leader in the group, and someone everybody looked up to — always a voice of reason both at home and at work. He was the kind of person that was always looking to help others. He quietly came up to me and ask to talk. He was hesitant at first but explained that after hearing me share my story and talk about vulnerability, now was the time to share his. He explained that he had an active plan to end his life that coming weekend. He has meticulously planned it, tying up his affairs and making sure his wife and kids were looked after with a plan in place. As he was explaining this, he started to realise the gravity of what he was planning to do. He’d reached this point after 30+ years of bottling up every emotion that tried to come to the surface. But he was finally at boiling point. By speaking about it so openly he was able to see there were other options and I could see the enormous relief on his face. Following our talk, he started working with a psychologist and the company’s Human Resources team to work through his issues. He had some time off before returning, not only to talk openly with his family but also to speak out to his entire team at work, sharing what he had been through and using his story to help others. He is now vocal about suicide prevention and continues to inspire and help others in the workplace to manage their own issues. It was incredible to see someone move from being suicidal with an active plan, to confronting it, learning tools to deal with it, and then going on to help create an environment where others feel safe to share and overcome their own obstacles as well. This story is one of literally hundreds of stories that I have personally encountered during my career as a public speaker and mental health advocate. I have witnessed CEOs of multi-billion-dollar companies break down and cry, allowing themselves to be vulnerable for the first time…and the positive ripple effect this has on companies. I have witnessed hundreds of kids realizing its OK and that they are not weak for needing help after hearing messages like the one I am sharing with you today. I have seen the impacts of bullying, in the most horrific circumstances, sometimes leading to suicide and I have also seen recovery time and time again through open and honest communication. If there is one message I am able to convey, let it be this. Not only is it OK to experience mental health issues…but it is expected. In the same way that we will all have physical issues at some point in life, at some point, many of us will also experience mental health-related issues. It’s part of the contract of being human.

Are there three things or are there things that individuals, society, or the government can do to support you in this effort?

Yes, there are. Here are three simple things:

  1. Follow and listen to my podcast, Move Your Mind with Nick Bracks: nickbracks.com/podcast
  2. Buy my book, Move Your Mind: How to Build a Healthy Mindset for Life: https://www.amazon.com/Move-Your-Mind-Healthy-Mindset/dp/073039204X
  3. Sign up on my website and book me for a talk: nickbracks.com

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started”

  1. Nothing happens overnight
  2. Don’t compare yourself to others
  3. Take your time
  4. Find mentors
  5. Failure = learning

You’re a person of enormous influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.

I have been traveling the world interviewing people about ‘how they manage their mental health’. I would love to start a global movement, documenting people from all over the world and turning it into a documentary.

Can you please give us your favorite life lesson quote? And can you explain how that was relevant in your life?

Just take that first step. This is always the hardest part and we can become overwhelmed if we think too far ahead. If you just take one step it will lead to another and before you know it you will have momentum.

We are blessed that some very prominent 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, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them.

Hugh Jackman! https://www.instagram.com/thehughjackman/?hl=en

Thank you so much for these amazing insights. This was so inspiring, and we wish you continued success!

Link to article: