Why I Finally Sold Out And Joined The Mainstream Media

London Real has always been about the message, not the medium.

Whether it’s talking to former world champion boxer Chris Eubank, London Mayor candidate George Galloway or comedian and actor Eddie Izzard, we have always stuck to our guns and produced beautiful, intimate, long-form interviews grounded in listening, empathy and connection.

So of course I’m proud of what London Real has become, but I am most proud of the fact that our values haven’t changed.

The show has always been about getting great content to the most amount of people – by any means necessary.

So when I was approached by the television channel London Live about bringing London Real to an even more mainstream audience, I jumped at the chance.

“But Brian, what happened to ‘Putting the BBC out of business?’” you ask?


OK it’s true.  When I started London Real from a small studio in Shoreditch (before we developed our global audience),  I had set my sights on the mainstream media and to put it lightly, I wasn’t impressed.

As I explained in my TEDx talk, London Real was started because I was tired of the mainstream media constantly selling me their latest iteration of “bad news.”

But in today’s world, I’ve learned you can’t afford to be short-sighted when it comes to the medium.

Online media is in a constant state of disruption. The challenge for any broadcaster is to keep evolving and adapting to whatever social media network or file-sharing platform is available.

Big news corporations have finally got the memo – people are not interested in being patronised and talked down to. They want quality content that actually improves their lives, opens their minds and has a lasting impact.

New media companies like London Real have shown the industry that the people who watch us are more than just consumers. The viewers who seek out our brand are far more akin to clients or customers.

Quite simply, if you want to impact people’s lives in a positive way, you have to really give them the goods.

London Real is proof that most people are intelligent, highly curious and committed to becoming better versions of themselves.

As one of my favourite guests on the show James Altucher said, we’re not living in an information age any more, we’re living in an “ideas economy”.

With each new platform we adopt, London Real will proceed to impact a new audience. Teaming up with London Live is the latest victory in our overall mission: to change the world one person at a time.

Tune in to watch London Real on London Live every weekday at 7am starting January 4th.

This Is Why You’re Lying To Yourself

James here again, with a #ThrowbackTuesday that is perfect Christmas viewing! This week it’s Philip McKernan.

An exclusive teaser of the two-hour course that Philip gave at London Real studios is now available, so if you need more McKernan in your life click here to take a look.

Early on in the actual London Real episode, Brian and Philip get into an absorbing dialogue about the relationship between the mind and intuition.

Most of us think we belong to either the mind camp or the emotion camp. We think it’s a matter of our personality.

Philip says that the mind and the intuition are distinct things, but that we all have them equally.

It’s part of being a healthy human being to have the two integrated. Philip insists the intuition should lead us, and the mind should serve us.

I think it’s important to remember that it’s not about saying one is better than the other. The mind and the intuition are equally important.

But it’s a matter of what makes you healthy and happy. Trying to use the mind to access the deep spiritual core of who we are, is not going to work.

I love what Philip says about the soul. The soul is the unique part of us, the thing which makes us distinct. Our intuition is the soul speaking to us.

We often ignore the intuition for the sake of the mind, because it is safe. The mind gives clear answers to clear problems.

Most of us get dragged into negative cycles, however, when we start trying to use the mind to solve deeper soul issues.

For instance, I have a friend who is always trying to figure out the next step in his life. He’s a hugely talented, highly educated and experienced man, but he seems to be in a permanent state of crisis about his life’s mission.

He’s using his mind to avoid listening to what his heart tells him. There’s always a good reason for him to ignore the feeling in his gut.

The mind cannot give your life meaning. But most of us still try to get our happiness and fulfilment from the mind.

I think this is the fundamental mistake at the heart of most of the depression, anxiety and neurosis of modern living.Because of the age of enlightenment and the industrial revolution, we’ve become so impressed with the complex logic of the mind and what it can achieve, we try to apply mind-method to non-mind areas of our lives.

I think a great way to elucidate this is to look at romantic relationships.

We’ve all been in the situation where a romantic prospect has looked promising “on paper”. We might struggle to find a reason not to love them.

The trouble is we don’t love them. Weighing the pros and cons of entering into an intimate relationship with someone is a dissatisfying approach for most of us.

The prospect needs to have that “chemistry”, that mystery ingredient that makes our heart race and our imaginations run wild with excitement.

But we make this mistake all the time. More often than not, we look to the mind to give us the answers to the fundamental questions of inner peace and fulfilment. That’s not what the mind is for.

When it comes to our job, our family life, who we should hang around with, we too easily get lost in trying to “figure it out” rather than just listening to the answer we already know is there.What I like about Philip McKernan is that he doesn’t just say the nice, fluffy new-age stuff and leave it at that.

“Believe In You” is not a chirpy catchphrase he uses to make you feel better. A lot of his discussion with Brian revolves around the reasons we turn away from the heart.

Believing in ourselves is terrifying. We go to great lengths to avoid doing it.

You might protest. Maybe you think you are pretty good at following your gut, and you are quite a confident person.

I would ask you to take another look at the basic stuff in your life – your family life, your work and love relationships. Are they really ALL expressions of absolute authenticity?

As a poet and an artist, I guess I’ve prided myself on sticking to my guns. I see it as my life’s mission to stand alone and be a voice crying out in the wilderness.

But I have had a lot of failures, a lot of resistance. I’ve forced myself to work in toxic work environments and I’ve hung around unsupportive people.

I justify it by telling myself the world is not poet-friendly, that it’s all part of the struggle. I have hidden behind the moral superiority of having “a real job”, at the expense of actually achieving my artistic dreams.

After watching Philip McKernan, I have a new perspective on all this.

How many of these experiences could have been avoided? And how many of these negative situations did I create for myself as a form of resistance?

It’s much easier to put yourself in an environment that’s guaranteed to mess with your purpose, than it is to actually get out there are live that purpose.

You get to blame the evils of the world, the thoughtlessness of others, the small-mindedness of some family members.

You get to have it both ways. You tell yourself you are fighting for a meaningful life, but all the while you are sabotaging it by getting bogged down in distractions.

Being authentic is hard, and it seems to be getting harder and harder in this consumerist and technologically driven world.

It’s essential though.Philip talks about how he spoke to soldiers in the US military and tried to help them dis-identify from their uniforms.

“You are not my heroes” he told them. Some were offended. But some felt secretly liberated. Because it shows that a life of meaning is not tied up in mind-created ideas.

Philip calls it alignment. When the mind and the heart work together, that’s when start to live from a naturally positive place. Our relationships and our life’s work start to reflect an authentic person, and they become easier.

Ironically, the material stuff starts to become less of a headache. Things are still a challenge, but we approach the difficulties from a place of purpose, rather than a place of scarcity, as Philip puts it.

This is a great episode. It’s one to go back to, and I’ve found myself relaxing and calming myself as I watch it.

Philip is a straight-shooter, and he can even be harshly direct. But he’s got this warmth and compassion that means you trust what he says.

Philip allows others to be themselves. Just listening to him talk has put me in a place of self-love and alignment. One day, I hope I can be the kind of person that does that for others too.

Let me know your big takeaway from Philip’s interview, and in the comments below tell me about an area of your life where you need to listen to your gut, and not your mind.

Chris Hadfield, Dan Hardy, James Altucher and Nick Davies

Another game changing week in bag for London Real. 2015 has been insane, I can’t believe how far we’ve come.

Here are are the links to all the crazy stuff that’s been happening this week:

  • A milestone Full Episode featuring comedian Eddie Izzard
  • Eddie Izzard’s Success Secrets
  • A Live Show featuring the return of London Real favourite UFC Fighter Dan Hardy
  • This week’s #ThrowbackTuesday revisiting James Altucher
  • My Blog Post on Ido Portal’s influence on UFC champion Conor McGregor
  • An amazing Live Show with none other than Astronaut Chris Hadfield
  • An awesome #RealTALK where I review the last few weeks
  • An inspiring, action packed story from Noorah this week in her Tribe Talk
  • The super-insightful Live Show featuring British journalist Nick Davies – the man who broke the press phone hacking scandal here in the UK

Man, you think after all that we’d be taking it easy, but it looks like it’s all go at London Real studios this weekend. Business as usual!

How A Fitness Coach Plans To Crack Wall Street

Many of us here in the community have had some contact with Academy member Candice White. Candice, known as Candi in the community, is a key member of the London Real Academy Tribe.

Her mission is to wake up each day and “help others.”

Candice is a Fitness and Nutrition Coach. She calls herself a “plant-powered vegan entrepreneur.” Naturally, her favourite London Real guests are people like Peter Sage and Timothy Shieff.

Candice is a great example of an Academy member who has several passions. She is using one passion to reach the next.

In her recent post in the Activity Feed, Candice has inspired other members to fully exploit the rich resources here in the Academy. She has inspired us to think about the following:

  • Passive consumption
  • Procrastination
  • Fear and your comfort zone
  • Focus and action

Candice shared her insights through this post. The full post can be read here.When Candice posted her insights, she also shared her success. The next step was to bring her product from her software business to the market, yet she needed considerable funding.

What did she do? She pitched!

Her pitching was successful and the “plan is to roll out a soft launch with a US-based distribution partner and independent retail traders, who will have access to the application/platform” in early 2016!

This is Candice with her business partner as they are talking through their business model with a potential distribution partner in the USA.

This week in Tribe Talk, Candice shares more about her pitch and her innovative product. She shows that the resources and content available on the Academy, are just the start of your journey.

The hard work really begins after we hit the stop button on our phones and laptops.

When we press pause, we are supported by a community of like-minded peers in our own private network. Academy members help us to start processing this incredible knowledge and make it truly useful to us so that we action our goals and start creating.

As Candice says, “the most fundamental takeaway is to build a better version of yourself, all of the other learnings are facets of this primary goal. This shift in mindset is infectious and people are inspired, beginning their own journeys as a result.”

Member Interview with Candice White

Tell us about yourself
“I am a deeply passionate, plant-powered vegan entrepreneur living in Vancouver, Canada. I emigrated to Canada from the UK in 2005. I would describe myself as someone with a versatile skill set and a curious mind. At the moment, I am running two ventures. I’m an independent online fitness and nutrition coach and a founder of a financial technology start up. My ultimate goal is to scale my existing tech business to an exit in five years and become a KPI in High Performance Fitness Coaching and Vegan Nutrition. My dream is to build my own fitness and nutrition brand and eventually open a wellness centre. My software business has the potential to lift off the ground very soon and when it scales, the plan is to have this support and fund my goal of opening a wellness centre.”
What is the concept of your software business?
“My SaaS start up called Machine Readable News, is working in the big data analytics field. Our key objective is to disrupt the existing financial industry and create an innovate platform to assist retail traders. Through the London Real Apple TV, Brian’s mission was to put the BBC out of business. My firm is attempting to crack Wall Street! It is widely known that large institutions and hedge funds have access to critical market data before the retail trader. Our mandate is to close the gap and make this information accessible to the little guy too. We work with large data sets and use news and social media information and plug this into our various machine learning models and algorithms to predict the future price of a stock. This is a platform built by the people for the people. We’ve been in research and development for a few years and plan to launch in Q1 next year with the backing from the Canadian NRC Industrial Research Assistance Program.”
Can you share more about the idea or product you pitched for?
“At this time, I am unable to share too many details prior to the launch date, but my firm is taking a unique and skilled approach to sentiment and big data and its financial application. Our vision and value proposition is working towards forecasting market returns using machine intelligence. We identify areas of risk and in return a large portfolio of stocks in real time using machine learning. Our software allows users to visualise stocks of interest in a large group with high return or high risk potential. The machine intelligence model uses proprietary news and social media data feeds. It displays data ahead of any web content, giving users a significant opportunity to take action. This extremely valuable resource allows the retail trader (not just the large hedge funds and institutions) to get a handle on what’s happening in the financial markets. Our vision is to level the playing field and provide real time actionable information.”
Can you share your pitching method?  
“My pitching technique is by no means perfect. In fact, I would argue it requires a fair amount of fine tuning. The key is to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. Having said that, I believe that if you’d like to be successful, it’s important to keep in mind the old military adage, ‘proper planning and preparation prevents poor performance.’ Plan your work, then work your plan. Oren Klaff’s ‘Pitch Anything’ methodology, struck a chord with me because the system bodes well with the personalities I come to contact with in the financial industry. My method was influenced by the culmination of knowledge I have acquired over the last few months by listening and observing other Academy members. In particular, one Academy member, Archie Ology inspired my pitch and pitching methods because he recently pitched to a large bank in Amsterdam using the Klaff methodology. This worked out well for him, so I used the main principles that Archie utilised for his own pitch. You can find the principles here. I also ventured into the startup community in Vancouver.

This is Candice and her team at Vancouver Startup Week on September, 2015. The second person on the left is Gregor Robertson, the Mayor of Vancouver.

How do you become a passive consumer of knowledge which seeks to inform, educate and inspire?

“The content inside the Academy is vast and exceedingly valuable. Yet, I realised I was passively consuming information week after week and not actually taking any action. It is easy to avoid putting your ideas and thoughts down on paper because there’s always another interview with valuable information or a different ‘take on things.’ It’s important to not lose focus and set some SMART goals. This was happening because I was unclear on the direction of my two projects and it was much easier to research, listen to guests and talk with Academy members than making some tough business decisions. To paraphrase Brian, ‘research is just fear masquerading as procrastination’.”
Why did you join London Real Academy?
“The real question would be why wouldn’t one want to join? In a sincere carpe diem moment, it was obvious to me that it was time to get serious and I saw the London Real Academy as the catalyst for change, not only as a movement, but as a family. A place where one can achieve growth of personal and professional development. I believe that accountability, peer support and interacting with passionate, authentic, real life people will press you to keep your goals. Mutual accountability is extraordinarily effective and the Academy is filled with incredible, authentic people with a like-minded outlook on life. Accountability was already a large component of my online fitness business model and so this facet really resonated with me.”

How do you keep accountable?

“At the moment, I use the SMART goals concept and it works really well. It’s important that I surround myself with people that can push me and add value to my life and for whom I can do the same in return. In the Academy, I have accountability partners for various areas of my life, such as business, finance, fitness and spirituality. My business buddy, more a mentor, Chris Albert chats with me regularly via text message and we talk about our ventures and offer advice, if required. For example, he helped me decide the best course of action with regards to my two separate ventures. In return, I am reading his Ketogenic diet book and providing feedback.”
Which one feature do you benefit from most in the Academy? Why?
“This really is a tough question because there are many benefits to the Academy. If I had to choose one, it would be the Private London Real Academy Facebook Group. It provides a platform for members to interact with one another, inspire each other, add value, seek advice and stay up-to-date with what’s happening in the Academy. The added bonus is seeing the occasional post from Peter Sage and Jamie Alderton. I have a few accountability partners and we use the Private Message system for this purpose.”

Candice has been offering her skills in high-performance fitness coaching to some Academy members. She won this London Real Academy T-Shirt for assisting Academy member Brenda with a vegan nutritional plan during the preparation for her bikini competition.Candice would like to continue to offer her skills in fitness coaching and nutrition. She’s also happy to provide insight into running a start up and scaling a business with little or no capital. If you can help her refine her pitching and publishing skills, she would love to connect! You can send her a message here.

In Candice’s view, physical meetups are an integral part of the Academy because they allow Academy members to come together in their communities to collaborate and exchange ideas. With that in mind, Candice is planning the first official London Real Academy and Vancouver Real Meetup for early February 2016. This is a photo of her Meetup with Vancover Real and a couple of other Academy members!

If you’re from the Vancouver area, make sure you don’t miss out on this meetup! The details of the Meetup will be announced here soon!

Tribe Meetups

There’s still to join Academy members on 19th December for a Pre-Christmas dinner in Toronto! But be quick, bookings fill up quickly at this time of the year!

Below you can see a picture of event host Marie-Judith Jean-Louis sharing her vlog about the meetup.

The last Meditation Morning Coffee meetup is to be held in London on 20th December!

Come and meet our host and organiser, Academy member Guillaume Hung for a session of Mindfulness Meditation. Below is a video from last month’s session

See if there’s a Meetup scheduled in your city here, and if there isn’t let me know what Meetup you’d like to see and if you’d like to host one!

Until next week’s Tribe Talk, have a great week, and if you’d like to get in touch with me, message me @noorahnaker – it would be really lovely to hear from you!

Speak soon,


P.S. The first Focus Group dates for 2016 are getting filled, so we’ve decided to add a further 10 spaces for you! This is a group photo of us all after the last Focus Group at the studio! Get one in your calendar!

What Ido Portal Taught Conor McGregor

I recently got this message from UFC featherweight champion Conor McGregor’s movement trainer Ido Portal:

“I’m relaxing with Conor on the beach in LA. No stress whatsoever.”

The crazy thing is, he sent me this 5 days BEFORE Conor knocked out Jose Aldo in 13 seconds.

I can’t think of a fighter on the planet who can say they have “no stress whatsoever” in their camp before a championship fight.

But this is exactly why Conor is a completely new kind of fighter.

Ido Portal can claim a lot of credit for helping McGregor hone the principles of his fighting.

This is a fighter that understands movement as a language.

He’s not thinking in terms of set techniques – punches, kicks and grapples.

He sees the body as a holistic weapon, and the fight itself is a blank canvas.

There’s a famous quote from Michelangelo, where he says the sculpture exists in the untouched block of marble. That’s kind of how Conor thinks about a fight.

He’s not going into the cage with a game plan, with an intellectual idea of how to win the fight.

He’s going in there to create victory, to pluck it from the negative space that exists between him and his opponent, just like Michelangelo saw the work of art in the uncarved rock.

Jose Aldo was defeated because, just like most UFC fighters, he’s an expert in a given set of memes.

Once he is forced outside of those memes, however, he is powerless.

The big problem with sticking to set patterns of blocks and punches, grapples and counterstrikes, is that an intelligent fighter is going to know how to defeat you.

When you free yourself from these strict memes, like Conor has, you effectively become unbeatable, and it has little to do with your expertise.

What it is, is a mindset. A principle upon which the fighter bases his or her responses in a given moment.

McGregor sees a punch and a kick as an extension of an arm and leg, each capable of it’s own vocabulary.

Where the typical fighter sees a limited set of techniques, Conor sees an almost infinite range of possibilities.

And once the fighter has fully grasped that principle, “the principle produces technique – instantly”.

For Conor McGregor, there are no memes. The way it’s been done before is irrelevant.

Conor is an organic fighter, because he creates and reacts in the moment, rather than activating certain specific combinations or pre-defined combat shapes.

For a about a week and half before the Aldo fight, McGregor trained with Ido.

The training regime was unlike any other pre-fight preparation.

There was little or no sparring practice, no fight videos, no real thought about combat at all.

What Ido and Conor did was practice movement. They worked on expressing the full capacity of the body.

It was about being present in the body, rather than preparing for a fight.

Conor said it himself, he woke up the day of the fight feeling relaxed and excited to get in the cage.

Something Conor said in one of of the press conferences really stuck in my head, because it gives you an insight into his mind.

He said once he’s in the cage, he is free, it’s the only place he really feels completely himself.

He doesn’t have to satisfy anyone, or fulfil obligations.

He just gets in there and expresses himself. He’s like Picasso in the Octagon, fully present, alive to creative possibilities.

He’s not going in there like a lot of fighters do, hoping for a certain attack so they can react just like they’ve trained to do.

A lot of martial artists are fond of quoting Bruce Lee’s line “be like water, my friend.” You know the one, the water doesn’t just fill the cup it becomes the cup, right?

It’s about being fluid, going beyond technique into a state of mind that means you are fully adaptive and creative.

Lots of people quote the line, but how many fighters actually live it?

Nobody does, except for Conor. When a fighter fosters his technique based purely on principle, rather than tried and tested technique, he’s truly unpredictable.

That’s what the ancient philosophers of war taught us.

As Sun Tzu said, you defeat the enemy by becoming formless.

Not literally formless, but the appearance of having no form.

You confound expectations, there’s no set dogma, no set of rules to how you fight, and your opponent can’t build a strategy around you.

If Conor McGregor is to be beaten (and I think it will be a long time before anyone can defeat the mad celt) then that fighter must understand the subtle relationship between technique and principle.

One thing is for sure.  The UFC will never be the same again.

My Man Crush On James Altucher

James here, and it’s #ThrowbackTuesday time. This week I’m going back to James Altucher.
I have a man-crush on James Altucher. I’m a fan. Just putting it out there.

I think the key to James’s success is his genius for building trust.

James doesn’t need to work hard to build rapport with people. He’s naturally self-effacing, funny and insatiably curious.

These qualities mean that people identify with him, and want to be on James’s side. This is a big part of why he’s so good at the comeback.

Like he tells Brian in the episode, he’s always able to get the right people for the right project, and build a network.

James says it took him a long time to figure out how to make that formula sustainable, but being able to galvanise different people round a new project is no small feat.

It takes leadership, and it takes a certain ability to inspire and motivate others.

James has charisma, but it’s not the aggressive kind, the sort of political charisma that gets in your face.

He’s just likeable, a great storyteller and doesn’t take himself seriously at all.

James reminds of me of guys I went to university with. Mad geniuses who are driven, but love having a good time.

He’s is proof that you can be ambitious and high performance without being an a** hole!

Behind the comedy and the one-liners is an astute and ruthless business mind, but the unconventional nature of that mind reveals an intuitive and passionate guy.

James’s concept of Idea Sex seemed to resonate with a lot of people. It’s the formula for how you become a leader in your field.

There’s no point mastering say, how to build a smart phone. That market is already dominated by Apple and Samsung.

But if you combine your experience in a certain industry, with a use for the Iphone, then you are most likely a leader in that industry. That’s why everyone’s trying to hit the App jackpot.

This is really the foundation for great art.

James uses the example of The Fugees sampling the soundtrack from Saturday Night Fever. They put two established genres together and immediately it was a hit.

This is true of so many musical innovators. The Beatles took black RnB and mixed it with Indian classical music and English Music Hall.

Bob Dylan took Beat poetry and mixed it with traditional folk music.

Shakespeare’s genius was combining different plot forms from classical and medieval plays, and mixing them with history and fairytales.

The talent lies in the combination, the beautiful friction between once separate forms.

It’s important to note, too, that you don’t need to be an expert in each of the ideas you are combining. You become the expert in the intersection.

It’s a powerful idea, and it’s the game-changing trick to everything from MMA fighting to direct marketing.

And one thing I like about Idea Sex is that no one can take it away from you.

Once you find that intersection, it’s yours, it’s your IP, and like Brad Burton said in the recent #RealTALK, anyone that tries to steal it is going to be known as nothing but an imitator.

A big part of Brian’s discussion with James focuses around the whole idea of what it means to Choose Yourself.

Yes, it’s about upgrading your peer group, eating well, and following your dreams.

But I think there’s something deeper to it than that. It’s about evolving.

James said he realised that his boom and bust cycle of success was characterised by the fact that when the going was good, he would be improving something about himself everyday.

When things were bad, he would let go of that, and lose sight of constant improvement.

Nowadays, James is someone who is completely uncompromising when it comes to his emotional hygiene.

He hangs out with loving people, goes to bed early and doesn’t allow negative stimulation into his life.

But to keep this kind of discipline up, you have to be seeing the benefits in your life every day. I think that’s the key.

When you see that your life is getting better by 1% everyday, it creates more motivation, it feeds off itself. You build momentum naturally and sustainably.

James’s style of communication is very relaxed and amiable, but behind it is a precision-focused attention to his own mental health.

The famous Altucher technique of writing ten new ideas down every day is an example of the simplicity and effectiveness of this approach.

The mind is a muscle, and if it doesn’t push itself everyday, it atrophies, as James points out.

I think the human spirit is a kind of muscle as well, or at least should be treated like one.

If we don’t create new challenges for ourselves, we will lose drive. We’ll become wage slaves and corporate henchmen.

James’s philosophy is very practical, but its implications are deep.

If we keep testing and challenging ourselves, keep moving and developing even when the going is good, then success becomes a lot easier.

Anyone that’s ever trained for a sport knows this. You can’t afford to plateau.

All it takes is 1% every day to keep that frictive and creative momentum going.

You can’t hold onto past success, but you can always keep chasing new successes.

James Altucher is definitely in my top three London Real guests of all time.

I go back to him over and over. Even if I want to just veg and be entertained, I’ll flip on this episode and come away with something new.

I’m interested to know how the concept of Idea Sex has been applied in your life.

In the comments below, give me an example of how combining two forms of expertise has helped you get the advantage in one area of your life.

It could be business, but it might just be fitness or diet. Whatever it is, I look forward to hearing it!

Conor McGregor, Ido Portal, Brad Burton and Dan Hardy

I don’t even know where to begin with this week, what a crazy ride!

It’s the Christmas season, but we’re upping the ante more than ever! I love it, that’s what we’re all about at London Real.

I just wanted to give you guys the links to all the good stuff that’s been going on here this week.

  • An epic montage clip of me and Ido Portal discussing UFC contender Conor McGregor
  • The release of the trailer for next week’s Full Episode featuring Eddie Izzard
  • The mind-blowing #RealTALK featuring the powerhouse that is Brad Burton!
  • An amazing “triumph-over-adversity” story from Noorah’s Tribe Talk

That’s a wrap guys! I’ve just busted out my weekend cardio and it’s time to recharge for next week.

See you on the flip side!

How A Horrific Motorcycle Accident Changed My Life For The Better

Meet iOS app developer and Academy member Sebastian.

Sebastian recently left his full-time job as an iOS software engineer. After the announcement of the new Apple TV and iPad Pro, he knew he couldn’t create anything for these devices. It was time for a change.

He realised it was time to build a business and bring his own ideas to life. Ultimately, the only way Sebastian wanted to work was by:

  • Being deeply engaged
  • Applying a diverse skill set
  • Feeling passionate about the outcome

Sebastian recognised London Real Academy as a “great movement from its beginning.” When he saw the new Apple platform and iPad Pro, he asked “how can the App add value to London Real?”

So, Sebastian decided to build a London Real Apple TV App. He wanted to build the App “as soon as possible,” so he “practiced letting go by focusing on one core feature that provides value to the customer and to ignore all other features” in the short-term.

He built a prototype and presented the idea to founder and host of London Real, Brian Rose. Here is the original prototype of the App and the image below is the heading of the blog Sebastian created to pitch his ideaHow did Sebastian keep on track with his full-time job and the London Real project? The biggest feature Sebastian benefits from in the Academy is the concept of “accountability.”

Sebastian told me: “Bringing people together who share this ‘growth mindset’ is such a simple idea, but to me, it’s the core unique selling proposition of the Academy.”

For the past six months, Sebastian and his Accountability Buddy Gabriele Farei, have been taking action.

This is how they stay accountable:

  • Logging tasks and habits into a live shared online sheet
  • Sharing Trello boards to observe progress on each others different projects
  • Catching up every Sunday on Skype

Below is an image of the live shared online spreadsheet:Sebastian now plans to promote the London Real Apple TV App and will update us on the #londonrealapp thunderclap when Apple approves the app to go live!

If you’re practicing your idea muscles, in an IT related business, online marketing, backend developer or gigging, Sebastian would love to chat!

In the meantime, you can check out the whole development process of the London Real Apple TV App here.

The consistent message here from London Real guests and the London Real Academy community is that we cannot live a life of authenticity, success or joy, if we are not passionate about what we are doing.

For Sebastian, a “painful learning” experience has taught him that by “not doing what you love you get nowhere, and by doing everything you love at once and timidly, you get depressed.”

In this week’s short member interiew, Academy member Anthony Arvanitakis recorded a video called ‘fail 900 times and then start succeeding’.

Anthony reveals how he’s turning his passion into a brand and how he’s building a better version of himself. Let’s see how he does it.

Member Interview with Anthony Arvanitakis

Tell us about what do you do

“My passion is fitness. If I had to summarise what I do in a sentence, it would be: I show people how to become strong and lean without going to the gym. For The last three years, I’ve been working on my brand called Homemade Muscle. I’m involved in a blog, online and offline personal coaching and I have a YouTube channel.”

What did you learn from the Tribe Meetup in Amsterdam?

“I see that a lot of people, as enthusiastic as they might feel and sound, often have no clear goals.  If you want to make a change in life you need to have clear goals and a vision of where you’re heading. A lot of people I meet on a weekly basis, are unhappy with their lives. But, when I ask them what they would like to be doing instead – they don’t usually have a clear answer.. Running AWAY from something all your life doesn’t make any sense. It doesn’t get you anywhere. You need to be running TOWARDS something.

As a famous quote says, “you’re the average of the majority of people you hang around with most”. That is why I’m always looking for cool people like London Realers to hang out with!”

Which event has shaped your identity?

“When I was 23 I had an motorcycle accident. As a result I spent 5 years in bed, I had 13 surgeries in order to save my shattered leg, and eventually had my leg amputated. Most people would think that this experience would scar a person for the rest of his life. Although it left a lot of physical scars, it also gave me the slap in the face I needed to wake up. From being a person with zero goals, no self-esteem, no tenacity, I became the opposite.”

“Sometimes physical and mental breakdowns lead to mental breakthroughs. I honestly believe that every problem hides an opportunity. It’s up to you to open up your eyes and see it! It’s up to you to use determination fuelled by your passions to make use of life’s adversities instead of running away from them!”

In your view, what are the reasons people don’t follow their passions?

“Everything starts from the way people around you treated your failures when you where young. In a lot of societies, schools, families etc, kids are conditioned to be painfully aware of their limitations instead of their potential. This conditioning is what scares a lot of people away from their passion in life. I think that in most cases, passion is something we’ve had from the moment we were born. I don’t mean that we knew exactly what we wanted to do in life at age 8. But for most of us there usually was something that when we were busy with it, time disappeared. We felt comfortable in our skin while doing it. Or another way of putting it is that we were in the zone.”

What message would you deliver to people interested in starting their own online project?

“Don’t go into something like this just because it sounds cool, or if somebody else is doing it, or because you’re bored or you just want to make money. You need to find something you are genuinely passionate about. You need to be so interested in this thing that every breath you take revolves around it!”

This question comes from Academy member, Jon Waterlow. How did you come to know what your focus would be in terms of producing videos, writing, etc? Or was this always obvious to you and you just needed to set to work on it?

“Start with the basics. A lot of people ignore the basics because they are just too basic! The fact though is that the majority never goes beyond the basics. So make sure you nail those first and also make sure you’re practicing what you preach. Content is always a lot more authentic that way. Talking about stuff you have no idea about on a experiential level is deceitful, in my opinion! No matter how good of an actor you are, people will always sense an impostor.”

If this story inspires you, then take a look at Anthony’s blog and  YouTube channel. If you have fitness and meditation goals, Anthony would like to hear from you. Get in touch or leave your comments at the bottom of this page!

Tribe Meetups

Join Academy members on 19th December for a Pre-Christmas dinner in Toronto!

Below you can see a picture of event host Marie-Judith Jean-Louis sharing her vlog about the meetup.The last Meditation Morning Coffee meetup is to be held in London on 20th December!

Come and meet our host and organiser, Academy member Guillaume Hung for a session of Mindfulness Meditation. Below is a video from last month’s session

See if there’s a Meetup scheduled in your city here, and if there isn’t let me know if you’d like to host one!

The first Focus Group dates for 2016 are SET, so keep an eye out here and get one in your diary!

Until next week’s Tribe Talk, take care and get in touch with me @noorahnaker I’d like to hear from you!

Speak soon,


End Your Losing Streak With Psychedelics – 3 Things I Learned From Dan Hardy

Dan Hardy sticks in my memory not just because he remains one of our most watched guests on London Real, but because he’s just so open and honest.

At the time of filming this episode Dan was still waiting to hear if he was going to be the UFC’s man in the UK, but that didn’t stop him from laying everything on the table.

As always, I learned so much from Dan but here are three of the top takeaways from this now classic episode.

  1. Honesty
  2. Own Your Losses
  3. Psychedelics Need Discipline

  1. Honesty


Right from the get-go, Dan said there was nothing off the table.

Dan’s career in the UFC was full of ups and downs, going from the number one welterweight contender to a four fight losing streak after a gruelling fight with champion George St. Pierre.

You never know how a fighter is going to take questions about his losses.

But Dan insisted on absolute honesty, and seemed happy to go anywhere I wanted to take him.

He also talked openly and honestly about psychedelics and how they affected his training and fighting.

On top of that he gave us an account of what it was like to be diagnosed with the rare heart condition, Wolff-Parkinson White Syndrome.

Dan goes into serious detail here, talking about the condition that finally ended his fight career.

I actually asked him if he thought it was a good idea to get so raw about his regular use of drugs, when he was in the running to be the UK’s figurehead for the UFC.

Dan told me the more honest he is in life, the more opportunities open up to him.

You hear a lot of people say that your outer world experience will be a reflection of your inner world.

Dan is proof that this is true. It was a real eye opener for me.

He had so much to lose from coming clean, but in the end of the day it was about integrity.

Short term it pays off to be economical with the truth, but if you are super-open with people, then you build trust, and attract the relationships that really matter.

  1. Owning Your Losses


The story of that four fight losing streak is really tough to hear from Dan, but by that point he was really philosophical about it.

Dan gave us a fight by fight analysis of his opponents, his training regime, and the moves that lost him those heartbreaking bouts.

Each time Dan talked about a fight and the reasons for his loss, he was completely raw about his own weaknesses.

Whether it was a move he didn’t see coming, or he felt he was just outmatched, Dan recounts these moments with real clarity and humility.

Dan is not just an MMA fighter, he’s a martial artist.

Martial artists are all about controlling the ego, and there’s no better way to get over yourself than to truly own your limitations, mistakes and failures.

I honestly believe this not only makes him a great guy, but it’s probably what makes him so good at his job as a fight commentator.

  1. Psychedelics Need Discipline


I wanted to touch on psychedelics here, because I think Dan captures perfectly the difference between the reality and the myth around plant-based drugs.

We’ve talked a lot about the use of Ayahuasca and Psilocybin on London Real, and you’ve heard me say many times that they are powerful tools for self-fulfilment and awareness.

It’s not just about experimenting with crazy experiences, it’s about actually developing yourself.

Dan has a great quote from this episode: “Ayahuasca doesn’t change the person, it just helps them understand who they are, so that they can make the changes themselves.”

I couldn’t agree more.

But Dan’s use of psychedelics is entirely unique. He integrates them into his life, his training and his fighting.

He told us about his detailed routines before and after his ceremonies, and they even involve kettle-bell workouts and long distance running.

Even for me, this is out there, but I can see why he does it. Dan actually WON the next fight after his first Ayahuasca experience.

It’s about evolving and developing his relationship with his ego and his intuition.

Dan taught me that if you want to get the full benefits of an experience like this, you have to do it right.

All drugs tend to get grouped together, and most people think psychedelics are as recreational as Marijuana and alcohol.

It’s just not true. All evolution is hard, and takes attentive discipline.

There’s no shortcut whether it’s meditation or psychedelics, and Dan brought that truth home for me in a big way.

The running theme here is how impressed I was with how Dan had built a healthy relationship with his ego.I’m interested to know if there are any failures and losses you’re carrying around from YOUR life right now, and how you might take ownership of them and let them go.

Let me know in the comments below, and I look forward to hearing about your growth!

Underdog or Victim? Brad Burton’s Inspiring Struggle

Hey guys! James here, and I’ve got some first class, inspiring #ThrowbackTuesday action for you.

This week I’m revisiting motivational speaker Brad Burton’s most recent appearance on London Real.

When it comes to Brad, Real is the word!

This guy’s whole approach to motivational speaking is about keeping it raw, for maximum impact.

Early on in the interview, Brian reels off Brad’s own 150 word bio, and it reads like an Ice-T rap.

Brad comes from a poor council estate background in Manchester, with a father addicted to heroin and no qualifications to his name.

He’s now the number one motivational speaker in Britain, and at the time of filming this Episode his book ‘Get Off Your Arse’  was the top-rated business book on Amazon.

He’s been depressed, had mental breakdowns, and finally changed his life when two bullets come through his bedroom window back in 1993.

When Brad started his business he was £25,000 in debt and had just given birth to a new child.

So how did this guy turn his life around and become the head of a networking business that now does 5000 events a year across the UK?

Well, there are a few secrets in this episode, but a lot of it comes down to a shift in mindset, a kind of ballsy, fake-it-til-you-make-it attitude.

Brad sums it up himself as “tenacity” and you have to watch the episode to hear Brad say that word in his heavy Manchester accent!

He says it with such meaning and relish that it’s motivating enough itself.

As he says in one of his many one-liners in this interview: “The difference between success and failure is not quitting.”

Brad has so many great motivational quotes, and you have to hear them in that energised northern delivery.

But I’ll list a few of my favourites here:

“I’m always fighting for the underdog, but the underdog needs to fight for himself.”

“Sometimes stuff makes no sense until you see it in your rearview mirror.”

“I can’t do your press-ups for you.”

“Someday you’re going to have to make a stand. Or don’t.”

“The road to success is littered with problems and trouble.”

I love this stuff, and there’s plenty more where it came from.

Ultimately it’s Brad’s energy that makes the impact.

Just listening to him tell his own story is motivating, because he frames the struggle in such a triumphant way.

Brad has been described as the “Tony Robbins of the north”. But there’s a difference in Brad.

I think his unique quality is his fallibility, the fact that he has been through the struggle, and he’s honest about the challenges he still faces.

One really inspiring discovery I made about Brad in this episode was hearing him talk about depression, and how every-month, without fail, he would find himself in a three-day slump.

He said it would happen whether he’s had a great month or a bad one. It didn’t matter, he’d still go into his “Brad period.”

He reframed it though. Brad says he doesn’t get those moments now, but when he doesn’t feel motivated, he will put everything down and wait until his fire comes back.

I think a lot of people who have struggled with depression, or who’ve just grappled with their emotions, will resonate with this.

I really found it inspiring.

It’s Brad’s ability to create a simple reframing of challenges in this way that makes you think you can do it too.

The subtext of a lot of what Brad says is, if I can do it, you have no excuse!

Brad’s concept of “the underdog” is a big inspiration for me too.

I think a lot of us here on London Real resonate with this in some way.

We’ve all become entrepreneurs and self-employed, creative free-thinkers because we want to take life into our own hands.

We no longer want to be at the mercy of people we don’t care about, and who don’t care about us.

Brad talks a lot about this, and shares his thoughts on why people get stuck in the 9-5 cycle, living a life of misery for nothing but a paycheque.

Brian and Brad have a really good back and forth here.

Brian says that most people are either doing it because they want to fill an emotional hole in their life, or they are just too caught up in what society tells them about success.

I think this is spot on. It’s our desire to make up for some past emotional wound that drives a lot of our self-destructive cycles.

Brad’s idea about the underdog also got me thinking: There’s a difference between an underdog and a victim.

A victim is someone addicted to powerlessness.

We’re all dangerously close to our inner victim, and it’s easy to invent excuses, or blame faceless shadows in our life for our inaction.

An underdog, however, is someone who takes responsibility.

They’re honest with themselves about the odds, and they don’t try to avoid life’s struggle.

Based on what Brad says here, the difference between an underdog and a victim, is that the underdog fights.

They don’t wait for someone to do their fighting for them.

Another inspiring takeaway for me is Brad’s riff about storytelling, and how he turns the struggles and low periods of his life into positive messages for his clients.

It’s this combination of the raw truth with a message of hope that’s really powerful.

Brad is a true northerner, and northerners don’t sugarcoat anything.

But when the truth is mixed with hope, it’s more powerful than any of the corporate, motivational jargon you usually find from people in Brad’s industry.

This episode is nearly two hours long, and you’re going to take away your own wisdom.

But I’d like to know if there’s a struggle or hardship you can think of right now, that you can turn around into a motivational story.

Imagine you are telling it in the future, and you’re looking back at where you are now. How would you reframe it?

Leave your motivational story in the comments below, and I’ll catch up with you guys next week.