196: London Papamichael: Private Personal Trainer at Body By London and Strength Coach

April 2, 2021

London Papamichael discusses how he went from losing communication with his father and losing his mother altogether, to becoming a source of strength for his family, finding forgiveness in his heart, and fulfillment in helping others become their very best.

Today’s guest London Papamichael starts off the story of his life journey by describing his cultural upbringing. “I come from the American Dream. My father was Greek. He came over to the States to chase the American Dream and have a better education. He met my mom and it was love at first sight. I can actually remember from a very early age, I’m 34 now, love in the household and having two amazing parents that I felt that loved me. I can still feel that today and that is very powerful.”

On this episode of Finding Your Summit Podcast, we talk with London Papamichael Private Personal Trainer at Body By London and Strength Coach, who shares his experience relocating to Cyprus in Greece during his childhood. “My dad got a phone call of, hey, my dad’s sick and I need to go back to the little island of Cyprus. My grandfather, my dad’s dad, got sick and they said, hey, we need you to come home to take over the family business and my dad didn’t hesitate. He packed us up and we left the States. But we weren’t ill-willed about it. We were all excited and we were going to live our amazing life in Cyprus.”

What You Will Learn:

London Papamichae talks about how his parents ultimately separated. “Slowly as the years went by, the marriage started to deteriorate and they ended up getting a divorce. So, I moved back to the United States with my mom and my sister Gabriella with my mom. My mom said, ‘I don’t want anything. You don’t have to pay child support. Just let me have the kids and anytime you want to see them, communicate, absolutely I want you to be in their lives. I just can’t do this anymore as your wife.’ So, as a 10-year-old kid, you know, I said good-bye to my father, to my hero. I saw him the following two summers. The relationship, and the closeness, and the communication slowly started to deteriorate.”

What impact did London’s mother have in his life growing up? “During that time of losing my father and being back in the States, my mom worked three different jobs. We lived in a trailer with seven other family members in a double wide trailer. But the way I was raised and how amazing my mother was, I wasn’t upset about it. I didn’t think I had this amazing life taken away from me. I was sad about not seeing my dad so often. But I still had love in the household. I had name-brand clothes and I was around friends, and I was still a happy kid, because of the way my mother was and how she raised me.”

London opens up about the difficult ways that life unfolded for his mother after her divorce from his father. “She ended up getting remarried and life was good, so-to-speak. But that marriage eventually deteriorated as well and I saw a side of my mother I had never seen before. She got into alcoholism to cope with her pain of the second divorce, you know? My mother, who became my hero, the sweetest, kindest woman, a mom that you want everything in a mom to be, she was that. I saw before my very eyes, a different side of my mother, you know? Life beat the hell out of her. It ultimately took her life on Mother’s Day. I got a phone called at 9:32 a.m. on Mother’s Day. My mother was 47-years-old. My aunt called me and said my mom passed away. She ultimately fell in her sleep by drinking too much and taking medication that she was on from her psychiatrist.”

London Papamichael states the turning point in his life towards responsibility? “There was no step-dad coming to save me. We don’t have a relationship. My dad’s not coming to save me. There is no relationship there. I had to make a choice. Was I going to rise to the occasion and be there for my sisters the way I felt like my dad wasn’t there for me and the way my mom wasn’t there for me through the way that she fell apart? I chose to overcome it. I found a way to pay for a $15,000 funeral, to overcome not having any life insurance, my mom not having any money in the bank. I slowly chipped away at allowing my sisters to be my ‘why’ so I could ultimately understand living for myself and self-love as well.”

What is London’s advice for aligning yourself with a mentor? “Find somebody you admire the most. Tell them that you will work for them for free, and then tell them that you will pay them. I bet they never heard that before. I said, wow, what a powerful statement. I kept thinking about these people I would like to work with, Will Smith, Lewis Howes, Steve Weatherford, and low and behold DMed Steve Weatherford and I say the exact same statement while I decide to move to New York with a friend to live on a couch for five months because I decided to chase a passion of mine, which is helping people.”

10 Goals and 10 Suitcases

What brought London Papamichael out to the west coast? “I always had this calling to go out to the west coast, all the opportunity, the weather. I just gave myself wild permission to keep pushing forward after all of the failings I had been through in life. I wrote down 10 goals before I moved to Los Angeles. I didn’t know anybody on the west coast. I had never been to the west coast before. I didn’t have a job lined up. But I had 10 goals, I had 10 suitcases, and I had an attitude determined to figure it out. After one year in L.A., I kept tabs with Steve Weatherford and all of those 10 goals got accomplished.”

A Leap Towards Forgiveness

During this episode of Finding Your Summit Podcast, London Papamichael discusses how the power of forgiveness lightened his personal burdens. “I started understanding that, I need to let this pain go, and I had to figure it out. I decided to write down on a piece of paper, ‘I foregive my father.’ I burned it, you know, and I just told myself in my heart that it is time to forgive him and let this weight go.”

Links to Additional Resources:

Mark Pattison: markpattisonnfl.com
Emilia’s Everest – The Lhotse Challenge: https://www.markpattisonnfl.com/philanthropy/
London Papamichael social media: Instagram and Facebook
Playbook App: my.playbookapp.io/london-papamichael/checkout?promo=london1

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