People underestimate the importance of mental health, and how it affects every aspect of your entire life. Unless you have an iron personality that allows you to push through the punches of life alone and never get depressed, you will at some point get intense feelings of anxiety or face other mental health challenges at some point in your life. James Krasczyk is an example of someone who faced such challenges while growing up. He’s made it his mission to help others at their darkest times and spread awareness about mental health through his content. James Krasczyk is a huge proponent of helping others, always crafting videos to resonate with the audience in a funny, light-hearted vibe people can relate to while bringing light to real world mental health issues. We had the privilege of interviewing James Krasczyk and asking him how it all began.
Tell us your story and how you’ve started your business. What made you choose this path?
“My business is spreading awareness on mental health. Growing up I faced a lot of challenges personally and with family which ultimately led to me struggling with mental health. Majority of the time I felt like I went through these hard times alone which made it even more difficult to get through it. When Covid first started there was a drastic increase of people who were struggling with depression along with many other mental health illnesses, including myself. I would often post stories on my Snap chat and Instagram with positive quotes to not only help myself but to hopefully help others as well. One day during quarantine, one of my friends reached out to me saying that I should start posting videos about mental health on TikTok. At first I wasn’t too sure. I was very shy when it came to being behind a camera. After putting some thought into it I decided to download TikTok and make my first video! The next morning I woke up to my first video hitting over 10,000 views and from that point on I was hooked! After that I started posting every day about mental health and fitness. There were many days where I felt like I wouldn’t make it on social media but after receiving many messages from people around the world about how I make them feel seen and even saved their lives when they were at their lowest point, I made it a mission to be a voice for those who are afraid to speak. My goal is to help people realize they aren’t alone in what they are going through. I am here to not only work on changing my own life but to change many others around the world.”
What are you most proud of so far and why?
“I am extremely proud of the community I have built as well as the leaps of faith I have taken at such a young age. From the age of 17 to 20 years old I worked as a web designer. Although it paid very well, especially for my age, I would catch myself staring out the window knowing that there is more to life than just sitting behind a desk. I knew I had a bigger purpose. So I decided to leave the web design life behind me and pursue social media full time. Unfortunately, covid just happened to hit around the same time and I had to help my family with rent. So yet again I had to put my passion on pause. I picked up two jobs working construction and plumbing while also trying to make as many videos as possible. After about a year, one of my videos went viral hitting over 2 million views. Little did I know one of those viewers was completely going to change my life. She was a verified social media influencer on Instagram who messaged me telling me to keep up the amazing work and spreading love to change lives. After talking for a few days and telling her what I wanted to do in life I spent the only money I had left in my bank account on a flight to visit her and her husband all the way across the country in North Carolina from my home town in California. After meeting them and all the amazing people they surround themselves with I never wanted to leave! They loved me and what I wanted to do as a career so they offered me to stay with them rent free to pursue social media full time. Leaving my family was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do but at 21 years old I decided to take a leap of faith moving in with these people I just met just to pursue my passion of being a voice to the world helping others. And it was the best decision of my life. Since then I have connected with so many amazing influencers and worked with some of the best Mental Health based brands and companies and have been doing my best to make my money through brand deals so I will never have to go back to that desk job ever again.”
What were the biggest challenges you have faced and how did you overcome them? What keeps you running when times get tough?
“Growing up was definitely a huge challenge for me which is ultimately what led to my recurring anxiety and depression. My dad was a really bad alcoholic at the time and my mom who struggles with mental health as well lived in an entirely different state. Although this was very difficult for me as a child it also matured me at a very young age. Instead of giving up on myself and my family, I was always a problem solver. I always tried to make things work and because of that me and my family are closer than we have ever been. Which is why leaving them to move to a different state by myself at the age of 21 to pursue my passion was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. I am often asked, “What keeps you motivated? What keeps you going?” and my answer is always, “I never want to put myself or my future family in the position that I was in as a kid.” Everything happens for a reason and I believe that I went through the things I went through to be the best me I can be.”
What piece of advice do you wish someone had given you at the start of your career?
“Advice that I wish someone had given me at the start of my career is that everything is going to be okay and is going to work out the way it is supposed to. Also just to have fun with what I am doing and not worry about the numbers so much and the rest will fall into place. There were many times where I would compare myself to other people with millions of followers and wonder why I am not there. But then I realized for me it’s not all about how many followers I have, it’s about the people’s lives that I have had a positive impact on. “
Where do you see yourself in a couple of years? What are some of your dreams and aspirations?
“In a couple years I see myself opening up my own gym with programs that also offer mental health help. I have already been in contact with companies who want to help me with my own merch line so it is a huge goal of mine to create clothing that when people wear it they are spreading awareness on mental health and also feel safe when they put it on. But my biggest dream and goal since I was 10 years old is to buy my mom a house and I won’t stop until I make it happen!”