If you are convinced that you are unable to spend time with yourself, you have a long way to go and you have no business attempting to have a relationship with anyone else. I wasted many years of my life looking in the wrong places. It is IMPOSSIBLE to love anyone, if you do not love yourself. They are your reflection.
As a part of my series about “Connecting With Yourself To Live With Better Relationships” I had the pleasure to interview Nick Hawk. Nick is best known for starring on the Showtime series ‘Gigolos.’ He is an actor, entrepreneur, author of ‘Nick Hawk’s 100 Kicks In The Ass: A Guide To Gaining Confidence & Reaching Your Full-Potential, and Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt.
Thank you so much for joining us Nick! I’d love to begin by asking you to give us the backstory as to what brought you to this specific career path.
It was kind of thrown at me. I never had any big plans or dreams of helping people, studying Psychology or giving advice. I was always on more of an entertainment and creative path. I thought that I would be, more or less, entertainment for my clients. I don’t have a big problem with that but I always want to do my best and bring as much as I can to the table. I came to find out that for the best experience you must make your client feel comfortable and I became really good at that. When you make people comfortable they start opening up to you and I started realizing more and more just how lost most of us are and how crippling our society is. I didn’t like it and I decided to fight back.
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you hope that they might help people along their path to self-understanding or a better sense of well being in their relationships?
My last book as well as my life coaching is helping many people. Any project that I do in the future will have teachings and messages. I will be obtaining my master’s degree in Psychology in the near future and I’m also working on a few books right now. I also take pride and put a lot of effort into my posts on Instagram.
Do you have a personal story that you can share with our readers about your struggles or successes along your journey of self-understanding and self-love? Was there ever a tipping point that triggered a change regarding your feelings of self acceptance?
I had a huge awakening when I was 25. A day of many tears and a day of much joy. It was a day when I realized I wasn’t special, but it was a day that I realized I could be special. I spent most of my life lying to myself and pretending I was born special, but that is an impossibility. I knew I would have to start putting in much more work and taking life more seriously. I decided I would do everything I could to operate at the highest possible levels.
As cheesy as it might sound to truly understand and “love yourself,” can you share with our readers a few reasons why it’s so important?
That is one of the problems with it. People think it’s “cheesy,” and unfulfilling. Everyone tries to find external forces to bring them satisfaction. If you are convinced that you are unable to spend time with yourself, you have a long way to go and you have no business attempting to have a relationship with anyone else. I wasted many years of my life looking in the wrong places. It is IMPOSSIBLE to love anyone, if you do not love yourself. They are your reflection.
Why do you think people stay in mediocre relationships? What advice would you give to our readers regarding this?
Lack of guidance. Don’t be mediocre. The ignorance of a mediocre individual who thinks that they are entitled to having an extraordinary relationship needs to be addressed much more.
When I talk about self-love and understanding I don’t necessarily mean blindly loving and accepting ourselves the way we are. Many times self-understanding requires us to reflect and ask ourselves the tough questions, to realize perhaps where we need to make changes in ourselves to be better not only for ourselves but our relationships. What are some of those tough questions that will cut through the safe space of comfort we like to maintain, that our readers might want to ask themselves? Can you share an example of a time that you had to reflect and realize how you needed to make changes?
We must realize everything we know and the laws we function by may not be the best. We must be open to new interpretation, perception, and most importantly, we must not lie to ourselves about these different ways not being able to possibly benefit us. We need to submit…we need to break…we need to be honest. Many times in my life I had to challenge myself to admit that maybe my way wasn’t the best. The beliefs that everyone has to have bad days and everyone has their “vices” are two bullsh*t beliefs I had to give in to, but it was easy. It was a simple decision and promise I made to myself.
I trust myself and my decisions now. We’re constructed to believe that it is a bad thing to be “wrong” and that there is a “right” and “wrong.” It doesn’t matter to me anymore. I don’t care. I only care about being better.
So many don’t really know how to be alone, or are afraid of it. How important is it for us to have, and practice, that capacity to truly be with ourselves and be alone (literally or metaphorically)?
You can thank Hollywood and tradition for this. Being alone is something that is fairly new to our evolution. Most of us interpret anything new as being scary. It’s just ignorance and poor teachings. Anything new should be exciting. You should take an intelligent approach, but when you decide to do or try something, you need to trust yourself. There’s nothing I hate more than seeing someone scared, especially a child. Fear should NEVER be taught or accepted. We feed it. We call people “shy” and ignorantly think that genetics or “personality traits” are the contributing factors.
Stop believing a human should act such as they act on TV. Stop thinking fear isn’t avoidable. We can do better.
How does achieving a certain level of self-understanding and self-love then affect your ability to connect with and deepen your relationships with others?
As I’ve already mentioned, you can not love another until you love yourself. Stop going on wild goose chases with other lost people. You end up consuming each other and getting nowhere through your ignorant desires of attention and lack of focus in the areas where it should be. You must practice self-control and discipline. Being in a relationship before you are ready, is not doing so.
In your experience, what should a) individuals and b) society, do to help people better understand themselves and accept themselves?
The biggest problem in the world is kids having kids. It must be regulated. Having no business being in a relationship with someone until you are ready, includes having a child. You have no business having a child if you have nothing to teach. Stop looking to these external forces for your emotional support. You must learn before you can love.
What are 5 strategies that you implement to maintain your connection with and love for yourself, that our readers might learn from? Could you please give a story or example for each?
I don’t feel you need to “maintain” this. It’s a decision to make. If you decide to maybe love yourself every once in a while, or you may try to love yourself, then you may need to “maintain.” Make the decision and be serious about it! Live by it! If you take excellent care of yourself and operate at high levels, you won’t be indecisive about the decision and you will carry it with you. You may set reminders when you are reprogramming, establishing new habits and testing the waters though. I had a reminder on my phone that went off everyday that said “SUCK LESS.” I also have a tattoo on my temple reminding me to be the person I put so much work into becoming.
What are your favorite books, podcasts, or resources for self-psychology, intimacy, or relationships? What do you love about each one and how does it resonate with you?
My favorite book is ‘Anatomy Of An Epidemic.’ It explores the pharmaceutical industry and really gives you perspective on how the world is ran by greed, but also how we are self healers and not as broken as one may think.
I also obviously highly recommend my book. It is changing so many lives. It’s exactly what we need right now. I really enjoy Time’s Psychology publications and ‘Psychology Today.’
I also enjoy interesting people who have seen a thing or two and have a unique perspective. For this reason I recommend Joe Rogan’s Podcast. He has the most interesting people on the planet as guests.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? Maybe we’ll inspire our readers to start it…
Regulating having children. Period. Give the lost and confused people of our society a chance. Most of you are sheep, but all of you are capable of being extraordinary. Just because you’re doing as well as the majority doesn’t mean anything. Wake up!
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote” that you use to guide yourself by? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life and how our readers might learn to live by it in theirs?
Learn and then love. In the quest for knowledge and wisdom you will discover love, power and happiness. If you are doing life right, you do not have to seek these things; they will seek you.
Thank you for these great insights!