Artist Jayson Aaron: The Most Courageous Thing A Man Can Do Is Open His Heart

This LA-based creative puts us on to the beauty of a man who's put in the inner work.

#xoMan

Jayson Aaron is, in his own words, a philosopher with a fly exterior. Speaking of words, the model/creative also a man of many. So much so, that it turns our original half-hour interview into a conversation between friends that lasts just shy of 60 minutes.

But perhaps more importantly, Jayson Aaron is a man who's in the business of making his dreams—even the most audacious ones—a reality. "We only have a limited amount of time and if you're not living out your dreams, you're dying," he tells xoNecole. "That's just how I feel."

It's just over 30 minutes past the hour on a busy Friday morning and he pauses to apologize for the loud ambulance sirens that so rudely interrupt our lengthy yet lesson-filled chat. Those sirens become increasingly ironic considering the subject matter of the tale he begins to recount a few moments after. A home invasion, a gunshot to the chest, and an out-of-body experience that quite frankly sounds like a scene straight out of a sci-fi thriller. A moment, so unlike any he'd ever experienced before, that would not only reshape his outlook on death but on life as well.

And now, trying to coexist between two contrasting realities: earthly stress and ethereal tranquility, Aaron has shed his old man and picked up the mantle of this new one with one main goal in mind: to live life on his own terms and keep his inner peace. A peace that's perhaps above and beyond any he'd ever known, but one that he knows is possible to achieve. "I think that my journey, what it taught me and the trajectory that it sent me on was that I knew that if I would be here, there's a certain level of peace that I can obtain and that it just might be possible in this dimension," the L.A. native explains. "And so because of that: my decisions mean more to me now, my time is more valuable to me now. I can't just waste it."

xoNecole recently got the chance to talk all things life and love from Jayson's vantage point and here's what we saw:

I define myself as…

"...A philosopher in the realm of entertainment and fashion. What I studied in school was philosophy. My head was always in a book and I'm always listening to some form of inspirational audio, whether it be an audiobook, an interview, or a person whose words I admire. That comprises about 50 percent of my day and I think that's also the part that people don't know about me. How cerebral I am, which then influences all the art that I make."

The moment that changed everything taught me…

"...That rock bottom is the trampoline. And the reason why I say that is because oftentimes, it takes people to fall on their faces, not necessarily to get inspired because nobody wants to hit rock bottom, but what actually ends up happening is, you find out exactly what you don't want. And the best thing that anybody could do in their life is to make a new decision. From that point on, we have the opportunity to be able to decide exactly what we do want and how to use that negative energy, if you will, as fuel to get to the positive side."

Courtesy of Jayson Aaron

"The best thing that anybody could do in their life is to make a new decision. From that point on, we have the opportunity to be able to decide exactly what we do want and how to use that negative energy, if you will, as fuel to get to the positive side."

Life after "death" has led me…

"...On a journey of releasing my trauma through various ways in different modalities. I think that everything that we want is on the other side of our fears and it taught me that our emotions are what set the patterns for life, whether it be bad or good. It's the emotions that are oftentimes trapped in our body and causing us to be tense, and it's our emotions that we should release in order to live a proper, good, healthy, mentally healthy lifestyle. That moment made me more self-aware and that's the key to life."

Practicing self-awareness and my spirituality has made me...

"...Study myself a lot and what I found was that every effect has a cause. So if I were to feel a way about something, especially in an extreme way, you know, that's an effect caused by something-- probably a thought. So I've learned to trace that effect back and go back within my body, go back within my mind, to see exactly what it is. And it's usually a form of trauma that happened; I felt some type of way about it and I suppressed it instead of expressing it.

"But I've learned to stop placing my triggers on other people and address those things within myself and I think taking that stance on life has helped me grow and blossom into a new person. People trust me more because I trust myself more. I realized we're all reflections of each other, so I can't do anything to you that I'm really truly not doing to myself."

"I've learned to trace that effect back and go back within my body, go back within my mind, to see exactly what it is. And it's usually a form of trauma that happened; I felt some type of way about it and I suppressed it instead of expressing it."

Doing the self-work prior to my relationship allows me to…

"...Find my happiness again and that has nothing to do with anyone else because nobody else could give you that. I had to find that within myself, but because I'm here today [and] because I'm in a relationship, I'm able to profess that and I have that confidence. I have that glow. My eyes are brighter and my smile is bigger. So I attribute that to the relationship because I can now deal with and express myself within. It's all good things. I'm in love and I'm in love with life."

Being courageous in love means that…

"Essentially how you treat or view your woman is a large part of how you feel about the Universe. So, if I can openly love, in general, and if I can show love without fear to a woman, what that truly means is that I'm an open man in general. I have the confidence to go out into the world and know that what I want to make happen, can happen. So, in saying that, the most courageous thing a man could do is open his heart; one of the biggest complaints that I've gotten over the course of all my relationships, was how ice cold I am, how closed off my heart is.

"And again, going back into the conversation about processing trauma, how can you open your heart if you feel that the world is against you? Or you don't feel safe walking down the street? So, in that moment, yeah I'm professing my love for my girl, but at the same time, what I'm really doing is professing my love for the Universe. I'm saying that I'm open to receive all the blessings I deserve in life and because I get to share the experience with someone who I'm in a relationship with, they get to share in those blessings too."

"How you treat or view your woman is a large part of how you feel about the Universe. So, if I can openly love, in general, and if I can show love without fear to a woman, what that truly means is that I'm an open man in general. I have the confidence to go out into the world and know that what I want to make happen, can happen. In saying that, the most courageous thing a man could do is open his heart."

Finding my soulmate...

"...Is what I consider a purpose-mate. A purpose-mate is someone who has the same outlook on life as you and someone who is trying to make the same impact on the world as you are. As a person, you're strong; but as a unit, you're stronger. Behind every great man is a great woman; behind every great woman is a great man. I think that when you have a big dream, you need somebody who has a bigger capacity to hold that dream and there's only a handful of people who might be able to share in that.

"I do believe in love at first sight and before I thought I experienced it in the past. But when you're around the right person, there's a relaxation, which is something that I pay attention to because that means you're both on the same frequency. I'm tenacious about getting better and improving myself and getting out of my own fears. So I had to be with someone who I consider to be a purpose-mate."

Intimacy between partners should...

"...Provide a sense of security, emotional security, which is something that's invaluable. Everybody has different love languages so it should be expressed in different ways but I think being present, paying attention, [and] listening are all forms of intimacy that can't be replaced. Yeah, you can have sex but if you're just doing it for the action of it, then there's no substance. Everything that I do has to have substance, so being present in that space, in that touch, in that eye contact, in that conversation, in that hug, all those things mean more. Intimacy is the same as watering a plant; you have to be present, you have to love on it in whatever way is needed and do it consistently, and it can't be reactive, it has to be proactive."

"Everything that I do has to have substance, so being present in that space, in that touch, in that eye contact, in that conversation, in that hug, all those things mean more. Intimacy is the same as watering a plant; you have to be present, you have to love on it in whatever way is needed and do it consistently, and it can't be reactive, it has to be proactive."

What I know now about love is that… 

"...There could be no way that I could properly love anyone else if I don't know what it means to love myself. So now, as I've grown, my experiences and viewpoints have grown. My outlook on women has changed. Before I was only looking at the outer shell of a woman, I was only looking at what I could get from her; that was the mentality I had and the mindset I operated from. But as I elevated my mind and how I treated myself, my version of love has changed, my version of love is an action that is designed to help increase the happiness of the other person.

"If I can be around you long enough, I'm going to get you to love yourself a little more and blossom more than you've ever blossomed before. My version of love is to help you see a greater perspective of what love is."

Courtesy of Jayson Aaron

"As I've grown, my experiences and viewpoints have grown. My outlook on women has changed. Before I was only looking at the outer shell of a woman, I was only looking at what I could get from her; that was the mentality I had and the mindset I operated from. But as I elevated my mind and how I treated myself, my version of love has changed, my version of love is an action that is designed to help increase the happiness of the other person."

What I know now about myself is...

"...That underneath all the things that I let go, I realized how loving I could be, how confident I could be; how far I could take my life. I realized all the things that I could touch. You know, I was surprised that I lived after getting shot. So now, I'm jumping higher than I've ever jumped before. I'm taking off limits, I'm doing things that I never thought were possible because my faith is strengthened. I have a deeper sense of faith in the Universe, in God, in myself and now life has gotten more fun. It took a while to get here, a lot of self-work and re-wiring of my brain but, now that I see life differently, I'm able to be happier in living it.

Want more of Jayson? Make sure to follow him on Instagram to keep up with him.

Featured image courtesy of Jayson Aaron.

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