Overcoming Adversity



(Transcript below)


What can I say about Ryan Armitage from Tezlom? This was simply amazing.


Adversity really doesn't come close to what this man has had to overcome in his personal life


As well as growing a successful business, Ryan has one of the best outlooks on mental health that I have met.


Have a listen and make sure to subscribe to stay updated!



You can find the full LIVE here on my YouTube Channel (where you can also catch them LIVE).


Can't Miss Links From The Podcast:


- The Calling Bullsh*t On Your Diet (Plan)


Transcripts:


Katie 0:04

And we are live so welcome everyone to the Get Your Sh*t Together Live Show and today I am joined with a phenomenal human being that I'm super excited to speak to who is somebody that's been working in the recruitment industry, the healthcare recruitment industry for nearly 10 years who has had a lot of hardship and a lot of heartbreak, but has also been able to scale his business and I'm very excited to speak to the ever wonderful Ryan Armitage from Tezlom. How are you my friend?


Ryan 0:35

I'm alright. Very well, thank you very much. A little bit nervous, but I'm alright. I'll be okay in a minute.


Katie 0:39

Oh you be fine, you'll be fine. You've done you've done these interviews before my friends so. So we met through the ever-amazing God Fairy of all God Fairies, Rhonda D'Ambrosio, (yeah) so she's been able to connect us.


Ryan 0:55

Yeah, she's probably falling out on me at the minute if she's listening to---she'll be fine with it.


Katie 0:59

She loves you. I was chatting with her. I was chatting with her yesterday. And she's fine with you. So no, but no, we met through Rhonda through mental health and recruitment. And that's how we've connected and in the last few months, we've definitely been speaking quite a lot. And we've developed what I would call a really nice friendship. So I'm super grateful that you are here on the Get Your Sh*t Together Live Show. So thank you so much. So, as I said, you as somebody that I am completely like you, I find you super inspirational, you have gone through more than what most people can fathom in the last 10 years than what people would go through in a lifetime. And I think that your story is incredibly important to tell, as well as the take home messages in regards to how you cope with your own mental health. Because I know your mental health has been a massive element to your to your story. And how you've been able to manage the good days and the bad days. And I think that for anyone that's even a business owner that's watching that's watching this. You know, Ryan's definitely somebody who's a great person to talk to you. So what I firstly wanted to chat to you about I know before we get into sort of Tezlom and everything and what you're doing right now, which is super exciting, because you're franchising, you're scaling. But let's go back to when you first joined recruitment and how you how Tezlom started. I know it wasn't called Tezlom 10 years ago, but tell me go back to the beginning. And how did you get into this? And how is it all unfolded?


Ryan 2:23

So, mum started the business in 2008. And we were called 24/7 Professional Health. So and that was your 2008 mum and dad started the business. They both been in recruitment for both been in franchising before, wanted to create something where they get back in, in the care industry, and also look at creating something that can be franchisable because they've been in franchising. Scale for a couple years and so they started the business and at the same time, parallel to them start in 20, for some professional health, I was selling cars, and my brother was selling cars. And I think it was about a year after that I, my surrogate Auntie Sue asked my dad for some money to invest in, she wanted to create an education recruitment agency. I got wind of this, and I joined her. So we set up an education recruitment agency, and she taught me everything about recruitment. So recruiting teachers, all that sort of stuff, teaching assistants, loads of part assistants, she taught me about that. And we actually franchise that business as well.


Katie 3:24

No way! That's awesome (Yeah, yes). Franchising's something that you've you've been doing for quite some time and fallen in love with. And that's how you've been able to franchise. (Yeah.) Which we'll get back to.


Ryan 3:33

Yeah, because, so mum and dad have been in franchising for years and years and years, different types of businesses like they done sportswear and things like that. So, but mum's also been in recruitment as well. And so yes, I got it. It's a family thing. And so you just pick up what they're doing. And then they taught me and that's how we did it. And unfortunately, 2012 so just three years into my dad got diagnosed with bowel cancer. So he got diagnosed a bowel cancer then. And it was quite difficult, obviously, for the family, because mum was taking dad for she'll probably kill me cause I don't know exact terminology, but radiography and went to Cambridge. And under that some operations there and had to have a stoma after a few of them, but so let's go back to 2012. And we need some support. And in 24/7 Professional Health at the time, my brother was selling cars so mum said why don't you come on board and family business you can start doing some business for us, create some business development, learn about recruitment. Go from there. And about six months after Tom joined in mama brought me and said the same thing to me. Why don't you come on board 24/7 because I'm happy to look after your dad and you can be in the family business and we can so and so my education can agency to my surrogate Auntie Sue, and I brought some children's services over to 24/7 because 24/7, predominantly did adult you know adult recruitment your adult services. So as a charity actually I still supply and I'm the chairman of now actually, but we supplied Learning Support assistants to that charity. And so that's how I brought it over and then me and Tom joined the business and we grew from there and developed the franchise network and learn learn our way through it. That's that's how it started.


Katie 5:18

That's how it started. But your parents essentially started back in 2008. And that would have been a really intense time because that was when the global financial crisis hit. I've got to say, Your mom is a bit of an inspiration of mine. I've never met your mum.


Ryan 5:32

My mum was 56 when she started that business.


Katie 5:35

Oh, what? 56?! You're never too--You're never too late to start a business. You can do it.


Ryan 5:43

Yeah, she's 56. And she still works full time in the business now. And massive partnerships. Just she runs a business women. So yeah, when people say, Oh, I'm getting old, I'm gonna retire, whatever.


Katie 5:55

Nah. Send them over to mum's why cuz she's just, she's just smashing it.


Ryan 5:59

She's the benchmark, you should get her on here.


Katie 6:03

What did I say, I said, I really want to interview your mum, I think she would absolutely be a phenomenal person to speak to especially because she's--


Ryan 6:09

The only thing about mum, you need about four hours.


Katie 6:13

I would love to chat with your mum for four hours, I would love to. But no, so here's the thing, though, if we look at your mum, when you call her the benchmark, and we're going to touch on that in a little bit as well, because I think that that's really important, too, for people to understand. But your mum set up this business in a global financial crisis, which is an intense time to set up any business for anyone. And then four years later, (yeah) and then. And then four years later, her husband gets diagnosed with bowel cancer, it's got a stoma, which, for anyone that doesn't know that that's actually very, very intense, it's actually quite life changing. So your mum is I can understand that your mum's already gone through that she's got her two boys into the business to help her do the business development in 2012. You guys come and start growing the business. Then what happens after 2012 that you've all joined together, you've got this really found that you've got this really nice family business, you've got your mum there who obviously is partially and but you and Thomas, sort of I'm guessing running the running the show a little bit.


Ryan 7:12

That's what we were wanting to show a little bit. We're both learning the ropes when mum was still heavily involved. But my dad's never been back in business since he had multiple operations. And I should know the dates and what exactly has happened, but I don't. And but he had, I'd say about 12 operations of all sorts of things gone wrong. And unfortunately developed over the years Parkinson's. And now he actually has Parkinson's dementia. He's in a nursing home. Well, he went to nursing home in December, and


Katie 7:43

The December that's just gone?


Ryan 7:44

Yeah, I haven't actually seen him since actually. I'm going to go on the 14th to see him for the first time since (oh wow) new years which will be nice, obviously. And so that's what happened, then we grew me and Tom got good got to grips with it. And we started growin the business and expanding the team and it went well from 2012 there Well, it's mum we're doing that parallel to that. And unfortunately, at the same time, sort of Tom developed a bit of a challenge mental health wise and and got an addiction challenges with cocaine, drink, things like that, and got a little bit out of control for him. But that doesn't define him because he was still brilliant at his job and things I think in the last towards 2018 he got really out of control. And lost a year upon part 2017-2018 things got quite out of control for him, unfortunately, ended up him committed suicide. And yeah, that's that's that was the story up to that point.


Katie 8:46

Yeah. So I think you said something really interesting that that I really wanted to just really highlight which is so important for people to understand is that the drug addiction and alcohol addiction did does not define Tom that didn't define who he was. And he was still a hard worker and all of that. And that's something that I think a lot of people would love to hear. Because I think that a lot of people get defined with it, right?


Ryan 9:09

Yeah. He's a functioning addict or whatever you do, would you want to put into proper terminology? But yeah, you're just normal Tom most of the time, but things were getting out of control.


Katie 9:19

Yeah. So you obviously he got really out of control after five years of him joining the business. So he had got the drug addiction and alcohol addiction was that during the time there was that something like before the five years or did kind of come out of nowhere.


Ryan 9:35

Yeah, it was well, it just came out of nowhere really, I think it was Yeah. The last two years it was getting you know, a bit bit bad. You know much about addiction, like appearance the way you are looked and turn up for work late and family sort of problems started to creep in on that build up to 2018.


Katie 9:55

And how was how were you and your mom managing that and on your dad? How are you managing it as a family? Cause obviously you run a family business.


Ryan 10:02

Yeah, yeah. So I think, looking back from what I know, now, we probably weren't managing it very well. And well, I think we're doing the best we could with the ability that we had. You know, obviously, hindsight is always a beautiful thing isn't it? Which I can only speak on my behalf. And it's, I felt like I did everything I possibly could. To give you an example of some of the stuff, I'm talking about work, because he couldn't visit common work, it was causing more stress. And then it was, and, you know, constantly showing up for work late and things going missing at work, and people turning up at work, and all that sort of stuff, trying to deal with that, as well as the business and carry on the business go in, while it's dad was getting Parkinson's and dementia as well, that was kicking at the same time. And then also my wife was pregnant with our second child. So yeah, that she was heavily pregnant. She we had Logan in December of 2018. So So yeah, when Tom died, Charlene was, yeah, Charlene was just about to have a baby. So we have quite a few things running at the same time. I remember being quite stressed out when. So when we found out about Logan, we were on holiday. And I remember being quite upset finding that Charlene was pregnant, because I was so stressed. Which isn't a nice thing to it's--isn't a nice thing to do, is it? Because you know having a baby something you celebrate in it. But I remember being so stressed out about it at the time because of all the challenges I was facing with Tom.


Katie 11:37

Yeah, I mean, to be fair, you had a lot going on, you had your dad being really sick, you had Tom and then you had, like, obviously, your wife is pregnant. And I think what's really interesting that people need to understand about stress, there is a tipping point, there's a point where it's like, you can manage a certain amount of stress. And then it can visit one thing that can overtake it, even though it could look like a really good thing. And it might not make sense to people that are listening, but there is that element of going like how am I going to cope? How am I going to manage that and that stress can be can be overwhelming, and it can change how you behave. And it can change how you feel about things and those behaviors and things like that. So that absolutely makes absolute sense to me. So I can understand that. That would have been very, very stressful with everything that you're going on. And I mean, I don't know he's I don't know what goes into franchising and business. And I, you know, I think that alone is a journey and stress and that would be its own stressor, as well. But then on top of that going through everything with your family. So at this stage, how is your mum coping?


Ryan 12:33

Ross will say about being the benchmark and you know, she does cope, you know, I'm sure that she's we've challenging conversations like and it's been some tough times. I'm not gonna lie to you. But yeah, cheat sheets cope, we are coping and we were doing all right. And but yeah, at the time, it was quite very difficult for all Germans got a leader puts a block on with Tom automata. Do


Katie 12:58

you wanna, you've told tell it Tell me what you want to talk about? Because this is this is your, you know, I want to talk about your journey and understanding how that that went. But if you want to talk about the lead up to Tom, that's, that's


Ryan 13:07

what I think. I think it's important because, you know, there's so many people who have addiction challenges mental health challenges in their life or in their family or friends. And I think people need to be able to talk about it a bit more freely and understand Yeah, happens to anyone. You can't it doesn't you don't just get it because the background or where you from a week or week or what you've done it's, it can happen to pretty much anyone. And and I think the more people talk about it, the more people are aware that something happens in your family, you don't know, it's,


you know,


you're aware of it. I think that's the thing, we we had such a bad time trying to deal with Tom and now much trouble the cost, you know, on under the family to see and go, you know, what they've been through, we need to react to this, let's try and deal with it, the better they can. That's what I'm trying to say. So, you know, that that builds Tom's insane of running a business I'm dealing with at the same time. And what I'm trying to say to people is that it does happen to anyone and be aware of it and you have to try out the best you can.


Katie 14:18

You're doing completely fine. I think what you're you know, from what I'm hearing what you're saying is, you know, you want to tell your story about Tom, you want to talk about the layup you want to talk about the warning signs and the things that you guys were trying to do because it can happen to anyone and this is not just suicide, mental health. It's you know, addiction as well. It's it stresses as well and it's understanding what what you know, if this can save one person's life like why why wouldn't you talk about that, that journey with Tom so I absolutely think it's important for you to tell that story if you feel comfortable telling it


Ryan 14:52

Yes, it's like the build up to it. And so you think money money issues that you didn't see before happening, the way they dress, so no For work lay, the people you associate with, you know, drug dealers threatening for money. You know, not being part of the family being distant, you know, all them sort of things are things we started noticing. And


Katie 15:16

was it gradual though? Was it something? Yeah, like you said it was really, really bad. But you said between 2007 2018 was everyone gradual?


Ryan 15:24

Yeah, I think so a gradual, gradual build up looking at it now. I mean, the later end of 2018, it was out of control, like,


Katie 15:31

yeah,


Ryan 15:32

paying money, people pay money, and people turn up the office and things like that, for dat. And then we've got to a point where we had to take the car off, Tom took his fallen off in, took his bank card off himself, put them under house arrest, he moved back on dad's, and I was spending every day in work with nipping home and take him to the chocolate center or the gym or sitting there trying to keep him in some power. And it was it was going well, to be honest with you. And then one was taking down on holiday because she wanted to get him away one last time because basically he was getting to a point where he had to be in a wheelchair full time and the Parkinson was really kicking in. So she was a little bit worried about that and wanted to book a holiday. So she's some my dad's birthday is a 16th October, and she took him away on the 15th I think it was, I am an on that day, Tom sort of manipulated the situation. So we managed to get the car off more. Because if you think about an addict, the most manipulative people in the world and managed to get the car from moelwyn Tom took them to the airport and then substantially disappeared that that so I, you know, find friends on your phone on iPhone had him on? Yeah. So I had him on family, friends or new arrivals all the time, like when I was at work, and he was at home. And we talked pretty much all the time. And like I said, I was taken into the gym every day, I bought him clothes from a sauce and stuff like that. And then that particular day was it was an early morning flight. And then I hadn't heard from what I got what God I couldn't get ahold of him. And the fire we got is obviously disappeared for a day and I couldn't get hold him all there. And he's, I think it was about 10 o'clock on that on that day. That night, another couple drinks actually. And then


I said shine, I'm gonna go and check


on the dad's house looking older Tom. So and mom and dad are obviously aware at that point in Italy, and I went to the house at about 10 o'clock at night and is in darkness or switched all the lights on let the cat and the dog out and the clothes i'd sent to Tom for the gym, or the wrappers on the side. But there's also classes from gin and tonic and evidence of care of it. avoir Aragon is obviously dissipating got relapse sauce. Now the word the word is, as I was leaving the other end of the street, Tom came in the castle, reverse back up the street. And it absolutely is that and we had a big massive argument. And we end up leaving on some good terms. But I need to get back because I actually probably drink and drive in Spanish because of 5g and tonics and money to get back to the hour. So we're back to the Alps. And then the next day, which was God's birthday, on the 17th. But one of them two days it was I remember it quite a big meeting that day at the office. And for some reason the times always stuck in my head 1023 and I just got up in the office and when I've got a call and just left I had this gut feeling you know, I don't know why I just got this gut feeling. So I went to mom and dad's house and mom dad's got quite a big front doors and open the front door and the ice cream nog in the lounge rely marine patches on it and why is the book at the bottom of the stairs? I why as you put that I think you might have spilt some on it and not put it over the ballast or something like that. And as I've got a bit close, it was actually Tom's legs and he put the clothes on the agenda not before. But then it was at the bottom of the stairs and all the other congealed, like you know big birthmarks and these lakes. It hung himself and the rope and snacks and it was the bottom of the stairs rig and ice and sat in his freezing cold and just at the bottom of the stairs. So yeah, it was pretty intense that and you'll give him a hug. So I'm sorry I couldn't fix that and sat with him for a little bit. So I doubt around the house to figure out what happened and father open a knife upstairs, sat back downstairs and just gave it no no Nana call, told them all up and said we're gonna send the paramedics eventually my wife and she was in work. She left the addresses. I think she rang the police at that point and then around an anatomy mom. So mom was in Italy. I rang her. So they were I she said some issues in the lobby of a hotel which actually wasn't now She didn't tell me. She knew how stressed and I said and I said Mom, Tom's killed himself. It only tells him she brought it down and then the police the paramedics turned up said the song, obviously, it's almost out because I knew half and then you said it was deceased then and then the police came and interviewed me. And then I had to arrange the coroner for Tom's body to be kept at South hospital while the so called get mom the next day mom got fights the next day. So that was pretty fucking heavy. And then yeah, drove over to the Manchester Airport the next day and you know, Manchester Airport, even when that was meant to mention when you come out the exit, and it's quite like a bit of a waiting area square if anyone been to Manchester Airport will know. And may a monk came out there and adapted a wheelchair and have led to just not spacing around. And then we drove up to the house, I think that day or the next day with the communism, same time. So yeah, that's that's what happened. That's


Katie 20:53

such such a hard story to tell, I can imagine that it'd be really difficult for you to tell that story. And yes, someone's just written there. And she is unwilling to ever hear myself. Yeah, I think. Yeah, but I think it's so important to tell that story because people need to hear that there is you know, what happened and leading up because they can change one person's story. I think that that's really important, especially when we're looking at drug addiction. And when we're looking at mental health in general. We have to hear those stories. And I think that you know, firstly, I have to say, thank you so much for telling that story. Um, I don't think I'm gonna get emotional. I'm not gonna lie. Do not think that because I've heard this story before. But you know, you've definitely um, it's definitely a really good thing to talk about. Because


Ryan 21:49

this, isn't it incense, and finally, dead bodies, incense, and I could probably go into the DL account to pull it all apart. He's not because it decayed and it will stick with you. But it's how you how you react to these things going forward. And


Katie 22:03

yeah, that's, that's, that's absolutely. But firstly, just thank you so much for sharing that. Like, I know that. I know, you've talked about this story before. We've talked about this before with on runners on runners podcast. But I think that, you know, I think it's still it's still such an important story to hear, because it's understanding, how do you move on from that? And how do you cope as a family after something so tragic has happened. And I think that, you know, you're just talking about your mom being the benchmark. And, like, honestly, like, when I think about your mom, I'm like, if when I made her, I'm just gonna give her the biggest hug because she's just such an awesome human. But to be able to go through that, and sort of come out of that, and be able to do what you guys are doing, that must have been a journey in itself as well, like, obviously, the journey getting to where Tom was, and then going forward within a business on a family business. That must have been pretty, pretty intense.


Ryan 22:56

Yeah, it was because I will just so then the day after the surgery, the day after Tom died, and I went, I went to work the next day. And because I had to consult because I was like, qualified crime just followed our work because it didn't rain. So I actually Rang zome said, Look, you can have me be on carpark because I've got some Italian. I told Zoey in the car park and we say she fucking fell to pieces. And when we walked into work together, and I've just got everyone together and just said, Listen, I've got to tell you that Tom's dad and he took his own life, I found him and I just need a bit of time to psych out, you need to run the business follows. And just crack on which they did, which is great. So the whole team's buckled down, get one of the business, it was fine. I think I had about a week off or two weeks off, and my model is a bit longer. And that was that first bit. Now this is where my dates get a little bit. Mom's got a little bit jaded, but at the same time this was happening. I was looking at the business and I was going to grow when you look at all sorts of stuff all the time you in the business will look at social media. And 24 seven professional holics was such a generic name and I think what happened over time is people start to use the 24 nine because we've been going quite a long time but then we have


no good reputations we still often we've got you know we'll do really well and and but we will like a bit generic and a bit corporate.


And I never really liked it. And you know you're in the care industry looking after people. It doesn't have to be saw I you know, shirt and tie. And so we have seen the brand I've seen a friend of mine called Liam O'Brien he got them to call lies often. They Liam used to be an addict and him and Mark created this company called wise and they spread the word about addiction and going to schools and businesses and you should check them out because they're really good. Liam was doing some social media but wiser financial actually and saying Who the hell is talking about doing that? Because I Hold up, you ain't doing it yourself. And he said, he said a guy called say mom is a branding agency involves a wet seating. And I think I can't remember it was either just before Tom died or just after I think it was just before just after Tom died, I can't remember. It was around about the same time. And then I think it was before I went to see him and then Tom died. And then we went to see him again. Because it took a little bit longer for him to the, to the rebounding, and I can't remember. But anyway ran button. And so me and mom, were at the point where what we do, do we carry on? We could have sold the business, no problem is a fantastic business. The caps are amazing, you know, the business model is fantastic. We could have easily sold the business, but we decided not to go down that avenue. And I said, look, I think we should all go on Wednesday, Tim and he said, Look, why don't you look about rebranding, so you don't look as corporate, he can do all the things that you want to do on social media, you can use as a tool to recruit and you can, I've always wanted to show the agency stuff we've got working for us. They're amazing people. So I've always wanted to bring them to the forefront of the social media. So I was trying to find a way of doing that. So that's why I inquired about it. So I've done that now. And so that's how it all started. And he was like, look, I think you need a refund, because to do on the 24. Seven personal family don't fit right. So then we rebounded to test them. So transform stands for transparency, equality, zealous loyalty, organic motivation. But in a corporate world, that's what you need. But actually, my brother's called Tom metallics called last. I love that. Yeah.


Katie 26:40

I love that. I think that that's, that's, that's, that's awesome. Sorry. No, I love that the rebrand. And I have to say, I have noticed with all your branding, and after all the social media stuff. It's really unique. Because you do have everyone that kind of works for you in the in the photos. They're not just stock images, they're actually people that work for you guys. And that, like I think that's,


Ryan 27:02

that's why would you stock Now listen to some people in my office love to punch me straight, and then also putting them on pictures and videos. But I made them do it all the time and starting to get used to it now. So it's two years in, and we're doing it but I think it's important because it tells a story who's in it. And it was part of it. And there are generic parts in this business. And they need to be part of often we bought the agency workers as well, they've all got a story to tell. And yeah, we try that, again, they don't want to go on camera, but we try our hardest. Because a call we've not actually done any feel that well. But I've actually just booked a film there next week, or the week after. So we'll get back doing that. So yeah,


Katie 27:38

and I think the rebranding at the time that it came and being able to, you know, honor your brother, and your dad who set up the business and who both worked really hard in the business to be able to honor them. I think that that's that's phenomenal. I knew I knew that the name was Tesla was very meaningful to you. So, you know, obviously, you've got the corporate side and the hardest part about you know, running a recruitment business and and it being corporate, and it being all of that it does get a bit stuffy and a little bit rigid. And at the end of the day, like it's human business, right? You're humans like human first business second, right? You guys, you guys actually really encompass that. And I'm going to talk about the story of the people that you work that work with you and the people that work for you and all that kind of stuff. But also just the story of Tesla itself is


Ryan 28:32

a culture and just trying to work on real people emotional intelligence work in the business. Yeah, that's what I want is that that culture and that's what I've tried to create an installer working and isn't sometimes what is going well, we brought in some pretty cool things to do. And this is where I started coping with my grief complex grief because obviously my dad Scott Parkinson's dementia and really doesn't know who I am sometimes. And, and that's a challenge yourself, but you have to then bring in manageable things to deal with that. So, you know, getting a counselor and a counselor since Tom died every two weeks. I'm not being for a couple of weeks. We're just trying something new at the minute. And yeah, been doing that exercise big part of my life. We both flew a lot. It was a big part of my life, and I'm practicing mental health and being empathetic with people. This is a massive, massive part of our


business.


Katie 29:31

I think something that I wanted to touch on was your actual ability on how you coped post. Everything happened with Tom and your dad, you know, to be fair, there was so much probably stress and grief when your your dad was first diagnosed, being unwell. And then with having Tom you know, having him sadly passed away, then there must have been a whole bunch of grief and being able to go to therapy and have counseling. I think that that's so important. So many people You know, so many people out there sort of turn their nose towards counseling and therapy just go I don't need it. I'll just sort of like muscle up or like not kind of at all it


Ryan 30:09

does is it? I mean, when you've got counseling and you see someone who needs counseling, you can just see the pain running through them. Yeah, you say they say these words and these actions in the way they sit and everything you just think, forking out all you need is some counseling sessions. Yeah, your cell phone case. And all you just need to reach out to people but instead of going to Bali, often all it's gonna happen is it's gonna affect you for the rest of your life. like fucking saw our I do.


Katie 30:36

And I think what you know, grief isn't linear, right? It's not like you can go like, the first thing of grief is this. And the second great thing of grief is that it's like no, like, it's it's spiral. It's spiral. It's not it's, it's not a linear process and being able to manage those emotions that come up. And I'm sure that, you know, we've spoken about this multiple times, like off camera and I chat about how sometimes it just you have really good days and you have really bad days, and that's not everyone has those. But obviously when you're dealing with grief that these days, you're going to have some good days, you're going to have some bad days and many times the last two years


Ryan 31:11

I've been crying in office Floria fucking loads of times, loads of times, adding breathwork techniques. I've gotten them spiky yoga mats I've done yoga stretching, go for a walk, go for a drive. Talk to people you know I have different people in my life different men in my life that's ultramar pretty much anything to cut my missus nor spots or Charlene all Hawkins on she's a medal and Memorial she she needs a medal like it's just the way isn't it? You know, you've got last week I'll try and do Paul and things in place. So you can call them move forward, I've got two kids, husband, run a business got 16 employees and office, we've got 15 franchisees across the UK, God knows how many times they depend on people that need to crack on and move the business forward. So that's where you have to find a way of fixing yourself. And that means moving away from friendship groups, you know, get into different things, finding all the things in life that you enjoy. That's we have to do.


Katie 32:12

Yeah, I think that's really important. Because I think, as you said, putting it all together, right? So obviously, when when first when Tom first passed away, you got straight into counseling, um, and then you started like really working on yourself. And I know that you did, because to be fair, if anyone's not following Ryan on Instagram, you need to go follow Ryan on Instagram. And the reason why I'm saying that is because he does these silly ass workouts in the morning and puts them up and every time he puts one up, I'm like, god damn, and I've got to do mine. So it motivates me and I think gonna lie you motivate me.


Ryan 32:48

I'm sure there's people falling in love. I'm sick to death from him seeing his videos live, but there's quite a cluster of people that I text me saying that wall and things like that. So. Um, yeah.


Katie 33:01

But no, I think that having here's the thing that I wanted to ask you, which is the mindset going into it, which is you, you kind of took a step back, and was like, You know what, I've got to keep going. Because I've got employees, I've got people that rely on me, I've got my kids, I've got my family, I've got my business, I've got my mom, you had all of those things, because I think it would be easy to allow that grief and that despair to overwhelm you. And I think that in most for most people, you you could get very overwhelmed. So I think that I think that it's I think that being able to sort of for you to be able to take a step back and recognize that was really important because you could have easily gotten lost. But tell me about the mindset on the days because I know that you have good days and bad days like how do you on a bad day, you have a really in my opinion, you have a really great way of of managing of managing that


Ryan 33:55

said ongoing projects, I'm gonna lie to you. It's an ongoing project. Like if I'm I'm in a pretty bad day, ouch. If I can, I'll talk to people if I'm not in the mindset to talk to people. I'll try and get myself to a situation where I exercise all I'll try and do some breath work or I'll just start with a bottle of water and our My thing is just get through the next 10 minutes. That's it just break it down to like right Don't think about the whole the whole thing because that's an I've got an amazing imagination so can make things working 10 times worse than they are. Let's just stop get some more. Drink some more going over we make a brew, you know, sorry guys scowl or whatever and just pick it out for the next 10 minutes we'll get in the next 10 minutes drink some more water and work your way through like that and then you do have some people in the life and I'm generally mercies are awesome. More More all depends on who I need to speak to our tribe. speak to them. And that's that's an unusual thing about Wales like South Wales, when you've got depression, or grief or you feeling suicide or anything like that you don't always actually want to talk to the people you'd think you'd want to talk to. So like, he think I'll talk to my wife and I talk to my mom, or I'll talk to you know, you don't always think that you actually pick someone else in your life or you don't, you don't want to speak to anyone. And you've got to have people have this is where awareness comes into it to me, because if you have people in your life, and they are acting unusual, or feel very down, you need to try and tap into them a little bit more than usually what and I think that's what I, I saw. So I'll promote a little bit easier. Obviously, people say talk when you feeling down, you don't always want to talk. And sometimes you want someone to say to you all right, and you go, yeah, and you got a you actually, all right, let's talk about your day a bit and tap into them a little bit. Because what actually happens is they actually tell you, I'll just eat down a little bit, you know, get him to talk about it. And that's what seems to happen with quite a few people in my life actually.


Katie 36:05

Yeah, like, I think that that's a really good. So firstly, you've just broken down so much, it's just really important, I think that, you know, focusing on the bite sized pieces that you can do, like breaking down one foot in front of the next that's how you got through this. It's like, you know what, I'm, it's easy to get overwhelmed. And, you know, it's easy to kind of get tied into the, the, what I call the the rabbit hole of stress and anxiety, which is you know, with all the what ifs and would have could have shoulders and all that kind of stuff. And you can get really lost in that. But being able to go bring yourself back to the present, which is with your breath lack. With focusing on just drinking your water


Ryan 36:43

wasn't like that I wasn't we were before on fire. Like we need to bring that shit in your life if you're struggling.


Katie 36:51

I love it the whole way because I call it woowoo. But it actually works. Sorry. Like, no, I absolutely hear what you're saying. But having that but being able to break it down into those, it sounds like you bring yourself really to the present and focusing on what you're focusing on right now. Rather than focusing on what else you could be other things that you should be doing well, Hawkins


Ryan 37:11

is that aware of me projecting, because I fucking hate people who go around projecting everywhere, I'm not aware Pixies me off like being fucking where the mood, like saw out the deck with everyone because you've had a hard time. Yeah, everyone has a story. I know you have a story, everyone's got shit going on, everyone's got story, it's not fair for you to go around projecting all revenue forecasts and not do some about it. You might have debt. And that's cool, you can have a bad deal. But you do eventually need to look yourself in the mirror and Bob will have to start this out.


Katie 37:43

Well, the other thing is as well as understanding that a bad day doesn't necessarily give you the permission to be rude to somebody else and be aggressive to other people, it's okay to sort of go you know, what, I need some space and not project everywhere and not you know, be aggressive or you know, lash out at other people write? Or make your problem, your pain, their pain, if that makes sense. beings the self awareness pace, which you touched on a little bit there is so important to be able to understand, you know, what, what am I what, how am I behaving right now? Is this why am I behaving this way? what's actually going on and having that self awareness to be up to you know what, my behavior is not that great? And even just tying in with your own emotions going like, what am I actually feeling like, how am I feeling right now? Okay, cool, I'm not doing great, or how do I want my behavior to be and be able to do that, and don't project over everyone, because that is something that can make your life more stressful. So I'm sure that you know, we've all done it, we've all been really, we've all had a bad moment, we're all having, we've all had a bad day. And we've lashed out at somebody that we love. And it's typically the people we love the most that we would do it to. And it's kind of like, actually, that wasn't really fair. And we've made the situation a little bit worse. So being able to, you know, like you say you remove yourself from situations, if you're really like, you know what, I'm actually probably not the best person in this moment for other people. So I'm going to remove myself, get yourself sorted, and then reach out to somebody that doesn't have to be, you know, it doesn't have to be a friend, like a family member or wherever it can be whoever you need it to be in that moment, you don't even have to talk about what's bothering you. It's just being able to have that communication with that person. I think that that's really good. But I think bringing it back to the fact that bring yourself to the present when you're starting to spiral and I think that that's something that I've always found really inspiring about you that you able to catch yourself and action something differently and sort of, you know, be able to move forward that way.


Ryan 39:37

Yeah, just just yeah. He said he said he said only Yeah, he's an unusual thing to do to try and make some work just the others don't like to be a true No, because he can be quite nasty and sarcastic and if you're angry and upset with people and I don't want to do that I want to try and be as candid as I can most of the time. You know that's what I try to do. So when you when you think focus on being a nice All this all I can carry on doing this and, you know, try and be kind to people, everyone's on a learning curve in life and no matter what they're doing in business life wherever, so to go around tearing people's ends off and being addicted, and because you're in a bad place isn't fair, I got to give people some space. And I understand that some people can't call that down in them, but you do need to start, you need to fix yourself. That's where it starts for me.


Katie 40:24

Well, it's also understanding that you can have a moment but you can't have multiple moments. And that that'd be okay. And I think that that's something that, that I find really, like, when we speak, I find that that really inspiring for myself to just be able to hear you say that because I think that's so important for other people to hear. So I know that that I know that it's been two, two years, coming up to three, well, two and a bit years. And years, obviously still going through the grief cycle, and you're and you're still doing everything that you can be doing. And I know you have good days and bad days. But right now I know that you're also going through a really crazy growth growth phase with with Tesla, so


Ryan 41:07

we did the franchise, then, obviously, and then the building some time doing all that we didn't really do franchise network growth, and then we rebranded and convincing all the franchisees to come on the journey with me and all that sort of stuff. And then we've been building that to some exciting stuff. I'm just about to leave, I'm not gonna say our name, because I'm not on the franchise network yet, but it's gonna happen very


soon.


Katie 41:28

Everything get the scope down.


Ryan 41:30

So that's nothing next week, in fact, and then yeah, we've got ourselves in position to grow the network. And we've got some franchisees just started, I've got four to start and the next two months, and we're talking to a company at the minute about going global. So that's the next move Europe and Canada, Australia. Oh, no. Interesting morning.


Katie 41:53

Wow, you and your mama superhumans. Like you're just super humans, like you guys, just, you know, I know that over Christmas, that was a really difficult period for you and your family, especially with your your dad having to go into a nursing home


Ryan 42:08

that says that decision of you know, Mom's going to battle me when I'll be able, No, mom was just dads Kara talked about it bluntly. And it was very difficult situation for us both talking about it, you know, crying at work all the time and stuff like that. And we just talked about and I just said, Look, you know, this is the best thing for me. And it's been good because mom missed looking after the kids. You see, because I've got Jackson, who's five and Logan is two, we should never really have them. Now, if she was Asian so that she's a Jackson about 10 times now, which is really nice. No stay off. Because we've never had that support before you see, well, we hadn't caught up because that's always needed care. So a mom's not gonna tell the grandkids. So that's why it's been quite nice now that dad's in a home and she can go and see him and he's safe. And he's getting the care he needs. And mom can have a bit more, but normally five bucks normally.


Katie 42:58

Yeah, that's like, honestly, I've like I would love to talk to your mom, because I think she would just be one of the most inspirational


Ryan 43:06

podcasts.


Katie 43:07

I know, I know. But what I wanted to sort of bring it back to is that you call her your benchmark, and I wanted to sort of get people's. I wanted to sort of dive into that a little bit more, because I think that I know what it means when you say benchmark. But what do you mean when you call your mom your benchmark?


Ryan 43:23

Well, she gets up every day. Possibly I'm outside that bad gets ready. looks amazing. By the way every day, like a mass she puts makeup on does it sort of shops shorts cool for actually 60 she's 69 now 68?


Katie 43:37

Naturally, you could you don't even know. All right. And you've also told everyone her age?


Ryan 43:41

Yeah, she should, she'll definitely borrow me for that. And she comes in work and you know, rosebuds International, my son's passed away, she was a multi billion pound business for me, just the deal me every day and employees in this business and all you know, just an eye otha if I've done workshops on that on the last few weeks and open, you know, told all of you know, like deal with all that on a day to day basis. And then, you know, she's still it's a million dollars and then lives last life is a great mom and a great granny and deals and all that much. You know, that's just passed away as well. My grandpa just passed away a couple of weeks ago. I'm also well you know that it's been but she just she'll just carry on going through this. That's why I call it a benchmark. So when I'm feeling sorry for myself, I'm feeling a bit down. I think focus on one's called work today. I've got work today like I'm gonna have to do and then they slide 28 and people said they're gonna retire at 55 and stuff you think Jesus Christ, you gonna do yourself like, God, gotta love your


Katie 44:41

mom was like 54 and she's like, I'm gonna set up a business and everyone's like, I'm gonna retire. She's just got a second wind and just and then to build it in a global financial crisis like that. Always like I love that


Ryan 44:52

cost maps a lot. But like I said, I'll be talking over the Germany soon. So


Katie 44:57

yeah, and then off to Australia. And then and then you know, you Zealand in a lot kind of stuff. So


Ryan 45:03

the Polish franchise Expo in September. So that's the next big move.


Katie 45:06

Oh, that's awesome. That's really awesome. I mean, to be fair, like you guys at Tesla have grown quite a lot. I know like the last two and a bit years has been so intense. It's been so


Ryan 45:16

much the whole team has been working on this project. Yeah,


literally everyone in the business and ad office have been putting into it. They've all been working right. Not gonna hate me at the minute, but it needs to be done.


Katie 45:28

Yeah, but I think that what you know, for something for anyone that's listening, and I'm sure that there's a lot of people out there that who are listening to this can can agree with this. The fact that of your last two years has you guys have gone through more than what most people go through in a lifetime in the last two years. And not just on a business front? Like obviously, you've had a lot of good things happen within the business, but you've had a lot of heartache on the family side. And being able to manage that and being able to still get up every day. Like you said, Your mom gets up every day looks like a million,


Ryan 45:57

a million bucks. Man Momo been in the office all the way through COVID. Every day,


Katie 46:04

even bring up COVID. Like, this isn't like you've also had this with COVID going on. So


Ryan 46:08

like, every day, we're just coming out to graph mom sets. And I can't comment on my own. I did three days on Well, we I came back in the office opinion every day some of the team went working back at home, and then some of the teams in the office and gradually trickling back in the office at the minute. Yeah, 14 by the energy.


Katie 46:26

Yeah. I mean, to be able to go through that and come out the other end with the mindset that you do have. And I think that if anyone's listening to this, like, Ryan's got one of the most phenomenal minds that if you don't know, Ryan, you haven't spoken to him before. And this is the first time you're hearing your story. Like this is just a scratch of the surface of who Ryan is. I've got to say like meeting you. And I'm so grateful for Rhonda for introducing us because it's honestly like you just have one of the best mindsets. And you know, you you know your mom is your benchmark you might be someone else's benchmark. You know, like if they're having a rough time it's like Hang on a second like Ryan Armitage from Tesla calm he gets every day he's got a nice haircut, you know, I know your wife is a hairdresser. She know that you beefy and you're all dressed up. And you know, I remember even speaking to you a couple of weeks ago, and we were like I think it was with Rhonda and I and we were like you're looking forward to it. You're looking pretty good. And you're like, I come into work because I want to look good. So I feel good. Yeah.


Ryan 47:25

The standard ending, like so many people love talking about this man. You see these salesmen in these shiny suits, and they don't look after themselves wear the same suit every single day. And they think a lot smarter. Terrible. You know, I mean, it's like put yourself together, right? If you want to start the day, make your bed have a shower, look, God. And guess what you might find in chunks, you get enough pieces there?


Katie 47:46

Yeah, I think there's like a guy called Jordan Peterson that talks about the 12 rules and pretty sure like you've just mentioned, like two or three of those, which is like, get up and take care of yourself. Just make it bad, have water and all that kind of stuff. And I think that, you know, I know that you've used to use exercise and diet as a as a thing that that's incomplete of your control. And obviously, that's near and dear to my heart because it's something that I'm really into as well. And I think that that's something that's really important. I just wanted to ask you a couple more questions about that before we finish up which is, you know, you talk about exercise and diet and I know that that's quite passionate, I know that you've been very busy so it's been hard to do it 100% but what is it about diet and exercise for you? That gives you just that


Ryan 48:30

so the exercise for me is like I'm never gonna have a six pack me and my PT Tom Barton looks like Terminator II and I will never have one but I am I just think that I like to feel good in my clothes so that's why I trained for that book that the main purpose is just to clear my head even if it's 20 minutes that fog that like make you can't even think straight or see straight some days of just complete you know I don't want to get out I don't want to speak to anyone today at what been left on my own no one understands the world's cruel fucking all that shit kicks in. Get into Majid I've got a job and then someone else and bought my garden 20 minutes later different person breathwork war control myself back in the game right Let's go again. And that's why I exercise that's why I chose I don't want to ever be in any competitions on the asked. I don't want to lift the most amount of weight. I just do it to clear my head.


Katie 49:34

Yeah, and I think that that's that's something that's really important. I know that I'll actually be really honest with you at the beginning of this lockdown. I was actually struggling just with this lockdown. I think everyone was struggling with this lockdown. And I remember you saying I just do access to clear my mind. I'm like, Alright, I'm just gonna do like, I'm just gonna do some stupid hit sessions every day or like, you know, most days a week like three days on one day off kind of thing and then get into it and I've got to say like, I Always know that exercise is really good for me like clears my fog and all that kind of stuff. But even if it was just like 15 minutes just to get that blood going, there's so much research behind why that is, you know, you're obviously you've got the endorphins and it makes you feel good, releasing some happy hormones like dopamine and serotonin and all that kind of stuff and endorphins. But it also actually helps increase resilience as well as an actual new study coming out saying that it actually helps increase resilience, which, if there's anyone that's more resilient than you, then I know that because you are an incredibly resilient person. So that's really awesome. But I think that also, I know that it's really important to you as well, like you've actually been, you've been pretty much you died the last few months.


Ryan 50:38

Yeah, it's important that that comes on comes off. And it's interesting, you get new people in your life who don't take the date seriously, then you get caught up in in, you know, coming out your diet cycle. And that happened to me recently, and I just clicked it back into place and gone. Actually, no, I don't want to do that, you know, we're going to go back to where I was because I felt much better about myself, I could control my moods easier. I wasn't as depressed as quick I can get back on track. And that's what I've done recently and I'm back on track now and just got a couple weeks out back on naps. So I don't eat much during the day What I do is healthy trying to eat so much not fall asleep after lunch and try and be relatively healthy the weekends book I'm not drinking at the minute. That's always a challenge for me drinking fountain that really kicks things off badly in terms of feeling bad, so I try and knock that out as much as I can. I'm not drunk for a week now. So


Katie 51:33

yeah, alcohol is an interesting one, right? So a lot of us lean into alcohol when we're feeling really stressed out. And you know, we've had a really busy day we're not feeling that great was it I'll have a glass of wine or a bevy or a beer or glass of gin and tonic or whatever it is at the end of the day to sort of relieve that pressure. But um, with alcohol what it makes you feel relaxed in the moment but in the long term it can actually impact how much sleep you get, you actually can wake up feeling worse it can actually elicit this stress and anxiety so it's actually not not the best tool to use whenever I say if someone's having being really stressed out I'm actually like I tell everyone don't drink alcohol if you're feeling stressed out I actually tell him that because it doesn't actually help but yeah, alcohol is an interesting one Um,


Ryan 52:18

I think that you're so close to it because you want to but now we'll come up with lockdown first thing we'll do is go to restaurant um so we're all looking forward to sitting outside some bars and a few gin and tonics and it's the I think it's that soft in between have not been that so called socially awkward guy and you know because you know not been an alcoholic but some people have been alcoholics they can't drink and that's that's fine but he do if he can drink and you do It's like he stopped he got a turtle Tom and you add about should I should ask whatever you know, I think it's just being mindful of how much you drinking Oh yeah, that's what I'm trying to say is Yeah, but for me I often I'm quite black and white with it I just contract to the minute


Katie 53:02

and that's fine like i think that you know for myself I'm I've put somebody that just goes for the long stints without drinking and I might drink on special occasions but I refuse to drink if I'm actually going through a rough time like I like if I'm stressed out or anything like that I just personally don't drink so that's my my little thing. Um, but so I think that's you know, I think the fact that you do the diet and exercise obviously like I love all that kind of stuff so I actually know I need to send you I've just launched my diet plan calling bullshit on your diet plan I need to send it to you but runner actually runs are actually guys constants derived for us you got a sense for me first so I've got like you guys give me a bit of talk


Ryan 53:42

to me first Don't get me wrong


Katie 53:46

but yeah, so and then in that diet I mean to be fair with the diet it's actually what I always talk about diet and exercise as a way it's not necessarily a it's not about losing weight exactly what you said it's actually helping change your mindset and the the the cooling bullshit on your diet plan is actually not about losing weight it's not about making you the fittest person in the world it's actually making helping you understand your mindset towards not just exercise but everything right and i think that your true testament to to that style of exercise and dieting, it's not necessarily about what you want to be like a bodybuilder with a six pack or whatever it is. It's gonna feel good. Yeah, it's fun. Yeah, it's cool. That's when you go and you don't have to and you know, that's why that's one of the biggest reasons why I actually created cooling bullshit on your diet plan is because it's it's kind of cool and bullshit on all the diets out there. It's like you know, lose 60 pounds in 30 days it's just not healthy. It actually is ruining your mindset Sorry, but I need to send that to you because I promised you I would I need to watch your kill me. So, so that's definitely that's definitely awesome. do that after that. But, Ryan, I have to thank you so much for coming on to get together. Honestly, I can't believe I got emotional because sincerely like, I've heard your story like I've heard it before. And I you know, I yeah, but thank you so much for sharing it. And I know that a lot of people were actually very touched. We're very, very touched for that as well. So thank you, thank you again, so much for coming on. But before I let you go, What is one thing that you would tell people to help them get their shit together, either literally or figuratively?


Ryan 55:36

Be more self aware, get get yourself awareness around you. And if you can't, and yet, that's the one that when I try and get my shit together, I go to wall. Yeah. That sounds like not Yeah, be aware, that's trying to issue together be aware, you don't have


Katie 55:52

to be a bit more self aware. So understanding how you're impacting other people and understanding your own behaviors and how you're feeling. I love that. I hate that if anyone if everyone just said took a step back every day and go, how am I feeling? And how is it impacting other people? Rogers, right.


Ryan 56:07

Yeah, I was thinking about bringing some inner work and calling it Tom's rule. And I was gonna say everyone's on a learning curve be kind of think about getting on the walls in the office in different places. And it doesn't matter where you are, if you work or personal life or whatever, you're always on the learning curve. I mean, Bobby candle projectable people make other people feel like shit, because you're about to become.


Katie 56:31

Yeah, I'm just, you know, I think that that's absolutely a great idea. Definitely put it on the wall. I love the tons roll. I think that like, let's make that a thing. Like Tom is really cool. Absolutely. Let's get that going. Because I think everyone can take a little bit of a, you know, everyone's on a learning curve, you know, and it's not about you know, not making a mistake, it's understanding that it's okay to make mistakes and bounce back from Yeah. Anyway, Ryan, thank you so much for coming on. You know, I'm just super grateful for you coming on and you know, thanks for everyone that also tuned in and and bright some lovely comments on this and lovely comments for you to read as well, Ryan, but I'll be next. I'll be back next week with the ever wonderful Rebecca Brown who will be talking about bullying and endometriosis of all things. So I'm very excited to have her on. But Thanks, everyone. Thanks, Ryan again, and catch you next week.




6 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All