'Can you tell me about a time when you almost gave up, how you felt about that, and what you did instead of giving up?'
I remember this moment like it was yesterday. After leaving the military I was just starting out my business without any preparation and getting more and more into debt. I had no mentors, no support system and no direction. I failed hard. I was preparing myself to declare bankruptcy. I was lost. I was scared. I was broke and I was broken. In those dark times, terrifying and lonesome moments of my life, I almost accepted failure. I almost decided to finally accept that what everyone had been saying to me my whole life was true: I wasn’t going to make it. I felt like all I could do is to just finish my psychology degree, not pursue acting or entrepreneurship and just work a corporate 9-5 job. In other words, I was on the brink of allowing everyone else’s pessimistic predictions of my future to come true. I felt hopeless.
In that same moment, however, I realized that this is exactly what I needed to happen. I needed to hit rock bottom so that I could find the motivation to change my story. Even though I came close to accepting defeat and giving up, I chose not to surrender. I chose to take the other path, the one where I don’t give up on my dream.
Interview by Nathan Wright with Jesse Meester
So, I went home, started studying psychology again, and started thinking outside the box. I also stopped looking at what people were doing, and started looking at all the success stories from people I coached and helped at MeesterPT. Was I losing myself in the process of helping others? I started looking at what was missing. I was getting fancy, instead of following trends, I knew this was the time in my life when I had to become the real leader.
Through self-assessment, I fell back into alignment with my core strengths and I found myself again. The better version of myself surfaced. I returned to MeesterPT as someone who felt certain about his skills and truly believed in what he had to offer. This allowed me to enter my speaking, entrepreneurship and acting with raw power, raw strength, clarity and unwavering conviction.
Throughout my life, people were always trying to pull me down and once I gained success I started seeing that my closest friends were actually my worst enemies. They were intimidated by me, which only goes to show how threatened they felt by my conviction and successes being self-employed and them wanting to take that away from me by lies, manipulation and me falling for it. Even in my own relationship where I ended up paying for someone else’s debt.
Some of my major responsibilities resolved about being self-employed as a young-adult, traveling the world, and managing my company abroad for which I was leading and employing coaches internationally. In my current business, I am responsible for everything because it’s my business and I oversee every department of every single operation. As an actor - which is my primary passion with my MeesterPT business – I continue to distinguish myself and have to find balance in all areas of life.
I always have to be several steps ahead of the game - whether it’s in my business or in my acting career - so that I’m always at the forefront of change with people that want to take away from my brand. I always have to be a leader - even on the days I feel off or unwell. On the days I don’t feel like being a leader, I still show up and push forward because that’s what leadership requires. That’s why leadership is one of the biggest responsibilities one can have.