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Total Health: Jorge ‘GMan’ Almodovar On How We Can Optimize Our Mental, Physical, Emotional, and Spiritual Wellbeing

Find something you love and just do it. Find something you always wanted to do and do it. Find something someone else wants to do and do it with them. Learn to find a new you. It’s okay if you’ve never done it before or if you never thought you would do it. That’s the exciting and fun part — to rediscover yourself. As we live, we meet people and their habits and sometimes we say, “I want to travel” or “I want to dress differently.” Then do it! It’s the most amazing feeling to be able to become a new you. Do you know that your body renews itself? Become a part of change. It keeps you young and you will feel amazing.

Often when we refer to wellness, we assume that we are talking about physical wellbeing. But one can be physically very healthy but still be unwell, emotionally or mentally. What are the steps we can take to cultivate optimal wellness in all areas of our life; to develop Mental, Physical, Emotional, and Spiritual Wellbeing?

As a part of our series about “How We Can Cultivate Our Mental, Physical, Emotional, & Spiritual Wellbeing,” I had the pleasure of interviewing Jorge Almodovar.

Jorge “GMan” Almodovar is the loving father and husband of the social media influencers known as the SWAGmodovars. Radio personality by day, Jorge was born in Puerto Rico but relocated at a young age to the US. He and his family, the Almodovars, are a viral TikTok sensation who captured over 1.6M followers in less than 17 months using their own brand of comedy, a wholesome approach to their online presence, and by mimicking famous standup bits.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive into the main focus of our interview, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?

I used to live in Puerto Rico with my mother, father and brother. I grew up in a Christian Family. It was a great support system but there was a dark side while I was growing up too. I remember my mom suffering from domestic violence. I was eight at the time and my brother was five. I can remember the emotions running through my body and feeling so sad and helpless, like there was nothing I could do. My mom eventually decided to flee from my father and we moved to the US. It was tough for me coming here because I had dreams and aspirations which took a back seat while I adjusted to the culture. But I’m very proud of my mother for standing up for herself and doing the unthinkable.

What or who inspired you to pursue your career? We’d love to hear the story.

When I was about 11, I wrote my first song. Unfortunately, my mom was so busy trying to make ends meet that I had no help in trying to make my dreams happen. There were a lot of obstacles and I always felt very alone in trying to make it. One day I went to a radio station for an interview for a morning show and ended up becoming so a part of the show that I was offered a job at the station. I was older by then and decided to give it a try. Everything changed after that and I became a radio personality. By this time, I was married to a wonderful woman who always supported my vision. I had wonderful kids that had so much talent too. I wanted to be different and help support their dreams — something I did not have growing up. Now my whole family supports each other in what we do, and it’s the best feeling in the world.

None of us can achieve success without some help along the way. Was there a particular person who you feel gave you the most help or encouragement to be who you are today? Can you share a story about that?

My wife! She has always supported my vision. She’s supported every decision I’ve made. And I’ve always supported her vision. Two people with two different careers, mine in radio and music and hers with cosmetology and teaching. We’ve always given each other the best support possible.

Can you share the funniest or most interesting mistake that occurred to you in the course of your career? What lesson or take away did you learn from that?

Wow! Good question. I must say this is not the funniest, and not a mistake, but it’s the most profound to me. At one point I wondered if I was doing it all wrong, if I was supposed to be doing something together with my wife. We were in different fields, but what if there was something we could do together that could really take off? And when our daughter asked us to do Tiktok together, and we started doing that together as a family, something magical happened. My wife still works in cosmetology and I’m still in radio, but now there is not only our individual careers but also our career together. I’ve learned from this experience and we have become closer and more focused than ever.

Is there a particular book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

I mentioned earlier that my family was Christian, so I grew up in church. At one point I had a revelation that changed my whole spiritual journey. My oldest daughter is transgender, and in the Christian religion that is not seen as okay. It’s a sin according to that religion and I was taught that he will not enter heaven. That made me question everything I thought I knew. I asked myself, “Why can I accept my son the way he is but the church can’t?” “Why can’t he go to heaven but he can enter my heaven (my home)?” It made me think. Then I read a book called God Is Not a Christian by Carlton Pearson and it changed my whole perspective on religion. From that moment on I felt like religion had gotten this all wrong.

Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does that resonate with you so much?

My favorite quote that has resonated with me and has changed my life is, “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change,” by Wayne Dyer. This is so true because there are different lenses in life and you can choose how you want to look at things. If you are a person that wants to be the best version of yourself then you need to learn how to look at things in a different way. A lot of the time we are taught how to look at things because our parents were taught a certain way, so we never learn how to evolve in our minds. We stay spinning in this generational mindset, and when life wants to show you something new, we don’t want to accept it.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?

We are working on some amazing projects. We have a reality sitcom idea that we have been developing as a family. It all started with Tiktok, but I also want to be open to other opportunities. When you’re focused and are in tune with something, life can present these opportunities to you. And if you’re too stern on what you want then you might miss the opportunity — even that’s a catch 22. You just have to be present and, like Bruce Lee said, be fluid like water. Be aware, be present, and when it presents itself, it will feel right.

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview. In this interview series we’d like to discuss cultivating wellness habits in four areas of our lives: Mental wellness, Physical wellness, Emotional wellness, & Spiritual wellness. Let’s dive deeper into these together. Based on your research or experience, can you share with our readers three good habits that can lead to optimum mental wellness? Please share a story or example for each.

Everything starts with yourself and discovering yourself. This might seem simple, or to say to be in tune with yourself might sound cliche. People throw this around lightly, but in reality this is the most important piece of this. Being in tune means being aware. A lot of times we fail at this because of things we have been taught, things that our parents have engraved in us and that has to be broken. You really have to die to let yourself and be reborn. When you understand this in life, you will find that you’re part of the creation and that you are creating. You literally create your existence. It is really hard to describe because you have to be vulnerable to change. When you’re a kid you believe anything. I remember telling kids in daycare that I was Superman and they believed me. It was so great to see kids believe the impossible. As adults we need to be like kids and believe that we can do anything and that we can shape our lives the way we want it. It will take time but it will come to pass. This takes care of our mental wellness because it puts you in control. You’re in the driver seat at this point. I feel like mental health is a serious issue in our time, so that tells us that we have done something wrong — because we let other people’s opinions get the best of us. Part of the challenge is that we have been brought up with this mindset since childhood.

Which brings me to the next thing: our physical wellness. A lot of people blame the nutrition industry because of our health, and that is part of the problem. But we need to decide to eat better and live better. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love pizza but I eat it moderately. Our family likes to eat more healthily. We make it a point to go to the gym or, when we can’t, go for a walk. When you feel better, your mind is better. And when your mind is better, your emotion is better. Emotional wellness is tricky because you can feel good right now and something can remind you about a worry, like debt, bills, a stressful decision. And without warning our emotional state changes. I also live by this quote: “What you think about, you bring about,” meaning we are creators always creating.

If we create feelings of doubt, fear, worrying, sickness or anything negative, you will bring it to pass. Have you ever said to yourself in your mind, “I hope I don’t get sick”? What happens? You get sick. You create that with your thoughts. In the same way you can create health, prosperity, and positivity. In religion people ask God for these things not understanding that it’s already there for them. But it’s our responsibility to manifest it. This is where spiritual wellness shines. We need to understand that we are part of the universe collectively. We are taught differently, that life is about a mission and that we are these mudballs with spirits in them and we are in this spiritual warfare and that God is in a battle with the Devil and that we need to have this checklist in order to get back to heaven. But I don’t believe that’s what it is at all. We are here to experience the gift of life and that we are all part of the same process. We complicate our life when we don’t prioritize ourselves in the truest way possible. To really look deep and see our faults, accept them and work through that. To choose life, to be happy, and to love. The responsibility is in us. Why is there evil in the world? Because someone choses greed, ego, bad intentions, or revenge. We need to understand that we are all connected in some spiritual form and when someone chooses something, it affects someone else. That’s why you can feel drained when you speak to someone that is negative and feel uplifted when you speak to someone that is full of life. We have an individual responsibility and, when we do that individually, we can automatically and collectively make a difference.

Do you have a specific type of meditation practice or Yoga practice that you have found helpful? We’d love to hear about it.

We take time as a family to meditate together, just as simply as lighting some incense and putting on some meditation music. Someone may ask, “Why incense?” I say, “Because it smells good.” [laughs] Meditation is like praying but with a difference. By praying you’re asking God to help you with something or you feel like He needs you to tell Him how great He is. Meditation is agreeing with the existence of God, universe, Creator, and connecting your intentions to see them happen before they happen. You are creating at this point. You are doing — you’re not asking. You are deliberately and intentionally creating with your thoughts, emotions, awareness. And you’re putting everything in it to make it work.

Thank you for that. Can you share three good habits that can lead to optimum physical wellness? Please share a story or example for each.

Challenge yourself but don’t get hung up if you mess up. Give yourself the opportunity to learn. Sometimes we try to be too strict when we exercise and when we fail we feel crappy. The good thing is that you’re trying to be better. If you failed to go to the gym and you didn’t make it one day, give yourself the permission to just move on. It’s okay. Even the simplest thing can be good. I love going on walks and just seeing nature, being present and in the moment and enjoying the air and nature. It will get you more and more out there and you are exercising at the same time. Invite friends and family to a 3-month challenge. We did this with some family members and every week we weighed in together. It was so cool to see everyone’s progress and to be able to do it together — and having accountability was fun.

Do you have any particular thoughts about healthy eating? We all know that it’s important to eat more vegetables, eat less sugar, etc. But while we know it intellectually, it’s often difficult to put it into practice and make it a part of our daily habits. In your opinion what are the main blockages that prevent us from taking the information that we all know, and integrating it into our lives?

Honestly, bad food tastes good. Like I said before, I love pizza — but eating a lot is not healthy. I try to eat healthy throughout the week and then on Sunday I eat whatever I want. A lot of people go on a diet and become so strict that they fail. Give yourself the opportunity to try other foods. Just be moderate. I do it on Sundays, which is why I call it Sunday Funday.

Can you share three good habits that can lead to optimum emotional wellness? Please share a story or example for each.

Find something you love and just do it. Find something you always wanted to do and do it. Find something someone else wants to do and do it with them. Learn to find a new you. It’s okay if you’ve never done it before or if you never thought you would do it. That’s the exciting and fun part — to rediscover yourself. As we live, we meet people and their habits and sometimes we say, “I want to travel” or “I want to dress differently.” Then do it! It’s the most amazing feeling to be able to become a new you. Do you know that your body renews itself? Become a part of change. It keeps you young and you will feel amazing.

Do you have any particular thoughts about the power of smiling to improve emotional wellness? We’d love to hear it.

I am a firm believer that laughter heals. We get so many people that come through our Tiktok videos and tell us, “I was depressed and watching your videos has helped me get out of that state.” We need to learn to laugh again. We are so consumed with everything that is going on that it really drains us. And then before we know it we’re in this depression. We don’t know how we got there and we don’t know how to get out of it. This is why it’s so important to be present, in the moment, and to be able to smile. Don’t take life too seriously; give yourself the opportunity to experience life in a different way. Be free from what is holding you back. Reinvent yourself, live, laugh and be new.

Finally, can you share three good habits that can lead to optimum spiritual wellness? Please share a story or example for each.

Meditating is the first one. Take time to quiet your mind, to reset and focus your intentions. You’ll find the good stuff about you and the ugly part of you and you’ll be aware of when the ugly wants to be someone — and then you have the opportunity to either change that or quiet it down. Learn to be present and in the moment. Life wants to show you and teach you. It wants you to explore it. Knock on the door and it will open the opportunity for you to experience who you really are as a spiritual being as you go through the human experience. It’s a wonderful journey. Yes, sometimes life has rough patches. But take the time to learn from what it’s trying to teach you and keep on going.

Do you have any particular thoughts about how being “in nature” can help us to cultivate spiritual wellness?

You know, I love trees. Something about them mesmerizes me. How tall, big and strong they can be. Nature is a wonder and it’s amazing to be able to really experience it. I can be on a nature walk or in my backyard and be able to see other animals living in the same place as me and to see creation at its best. It shows you that there is more to what we think we know. To experience simple things like the air, wind and rain and how nature has a cycle. When you really try to understand it but you can’t, it shows you how wonderful the earth really is. It really puts spirituality in the forefront — knowing that I am connected to all of it.

Okay, we are nearly done. You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good for the greatest number of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.

It would be to be aware of each other and our feelings. That what we do really has a sequence of events that will happen. When you do something wrong to someone, there is a “con-sequence”; when you do something good there is a “con-sequence” — that you reap what you sow, that you are always creating whether you believe it or not. So create with intention and attention. Be present in the moment and be the best version of yourself — and “BE AWARE.”

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US, whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we both tag them.

I say it would have to be Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Not only am I a huge WWE fan. But it was also interesting to see how even though he was a football player, they gave him a chance. He believed in himself before anybody else did and he took every opportunity he was given and then gave it 100%. And he is still going. He’s a motivator and inspiration and someone to learn from.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

You can follow our family TikTok and Instagram @swagmodovars.

Thank you for these really excellent insights, and we greatly appreciate the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success.

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