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Episode 119: Running in the Dark: Akshay Nanavanti on Finding the Gifts in the Struggle

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Today’s guest is sharing his incredible journey, and we can’t wait for you to listen in! Akshay Nanavanti came to America at a young age, overcame drug addiction, and then joined the Marines. He left his corporate job to drag a 190-pound sled 350 miles across the world’s second largest polar icecap, swim through underwater caves, almost get killed by a falling boulder while glacier calving – and a whole lot more!

As you’ll hear, Akshay’s greatest challenge came when he was diagnosed with PTSD and suffered from depression and alcohol addiction, which drove him to the brink of suicide. He spent years studying neuroscience, psychology, and spirituality to figure out not only what would heal his brain, but what it really takes to live a happy, successful, and meaningful life.

Akshay created Fearvana, which he defines as “the bliss that results from engaging our fears to pursue our own worthy struggle.” His book of the same name has been endorsed by the Dalai Lama, with sales from the book going to support his foundation.

A lot of what he talks about in this episode has to do with struggle, and you’ll discover why he actually seeks it out. Akshay shows us how we can all live our lives the way that we want to, and we’re blown away by his enthusiasm and how he’s gone after life, especially after experiencing circumstances that would have stopped so many people.

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Episode 119: Running in the Dark: Akshay Nanavanti on Finding the Gifts in the Struggle

In This Episode

  • Akshay’s amazing journey that has led him to where he is today [9:10]
  • What sharing our struggles with the world will do [12:52]
  • Why he goes to the extreme [15:42]
  • What terrifies Akshay most about stillness [20:17]
  • How to use the darkness we experience for good, and where he brings pleasure into his life [26:37]
  • Askshay’s experiences of war and how they relate to everyday life [38:22]
  • The ways he’s using simplicity in his business [41:56]
  • How to tell which feelings we should be an engaging and an example of this from his life [48:57]
  • His process for helping people navigate today’s world [45:14]
  • What’s next for Akshay and his big vision [58:52]

Selected Links from the Episode

Get On The Origin ® Waitlist! Origin™ Incubator Preorder Kate’s New Book!

Fearvana Website & Foundation

Akshay’s Book, FEARVANA

Awakening Giants Todoist App

Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

Connect with Kate, Mike & Akshay on Instagram!

People Mentioned

Marie Forleo The Dalai Lama

Podcast Details



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