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Inspiring Conversations with Jason Hopcus of Connection Project

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jason Hopcus.

Hi Jason, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstories.
Those who know me would agree I am a passionate ambassador for evolving the current narrative of mental health. I believe everyone struggles with something. And, from that understanding think we have an opportunity to better meet people where they are.

But my story didn’t begin here…

My current efforts are built from my own mental health crisis following the 2008 financial crash. Prior, I’d built successful real-estate support businesses and achieved the proverbial American Dream. However, I watched much of my life’s work evaporate like so many others.

Life literally stopped me in my tracks. I lost my career, my money, and my mind. It was my own living dark night of the soul. For longer than I care to admit, there was more darkness than light. However, with a mustard seed of faith, I kept walking forward when so many might have given up. For that, I am grateful.

Along the way, I recognized if I survived, I would move forward using my voice to make an impact and ensure others didn’t struggle the same way I did making their way from dark to light.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
When the world you know falls apart, there are unexpected opportunities to face things you fear the most. On my own journey, what I expected to be most painful often wasn’t. Rather, it was the unexpected waves of emotions and memories I never saw coming that left me flat on the floor.

For nearly ten years, I was frozen by the shame of what happened. I would run endless scenarios in my head. Over and over, I replayed the would’ve, should’ve, and could’ve. I was stuck in the story of why this had happened.

With time and healing, I’ve finally leaned into those most painful parts of my story. Finally realizing any of us can have a bad chapter, I reframed how I wasn’t different or special. There was true peace in that understanding. I’d spent my whole life pursuing what I thought was the right thing, whether it brought me joy or not. I discovered doing things out of duty and obligation is not the way to a fulfilling life. That path clearly was not meant for me, and the Universe literally brought me to my knees.

Today, I’ve learned to embrace all the parts of my story. In fact, the most painful times revealed my true passion and purpose. This profound clarity reminds me everything happens for a reason. And by staying in opposition with myself during those darkest times was an active choice to not fully show up as my most authentic self. There is a beautiful peace in being exactly who you are, knowing it is all meant to be- the space of grace and gratitude.

As you know, we’re big fans of Connection Project, LTD. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about the brand?
My work is built from my story.

My heart is focused on the service of others.

My personal mission is to advance human connection by embracing conversation among fighters; the humans whose journeys from dark to light give hope to those that deserve a 2nd or even a 3rd chance.

My company, Connection Project takes a fresh innovative approach by focusing on those who have turned their personal struggle around to champion a community-driven cause. Through a raw focus on the individual, we nourish honest conversations to birth a system of greater social responsibility.

By drawing on personal experience, I fully acknowledge the amount of effort it takes, how necessary it is to share each other’s journeys, and why we all must make space for unashamed conversation.

Connection Project creates communities of support for people working to deepen their relationships with their work, their play, and ultimately our world. Each opportunity we pursue is focused on igniting a cultural shift from the broader understanding that everyone struggled with.

What matters most to you?
The heart of my passion comes from building systems that strengthen and deepen connection to ourselves and others. This begins by amplifying a simple reminder ‘You Are NOT Alone.’

Recognizing each of us is part of a bigger whole, makes space for anyone to live a wholly authentic, full life. Collectively, we have an opportunity to better meet people where they are, which starts with understanding Everyone Struggles.

The foundation of struggle transcends the scary, sad, and traumatic. It opens the door for each of us to show up with compassion and acknowledgment of our shared humanity. That kind of beautiful connection has the capacity to transcend most personal differences.

That alone has the power to change everything! Just imagine a world where we all worked together for a common goal of connection.

That is what matters to me.

Contact Info:

Image Credits:

Eric Abbott Photography

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