The One With Michael Jeffrey
In this episode my guest Michael Jeffrey talks about the stages of fear with focus on how it never really leaves us as we get older. He also discusses about how fear can manifest into mental health problems if it is not addressed and dealt with or seen for what is it. It is his belief that mental health should be stigma free.

He talks about his journey through fear of joining the forces, leaving home as a teenager and joining the military > right through to his first deployment on a ship > his time in Iraq > getting promoted > dealing with family issues > leaving the military > derailing with death in the family > facing mental health issues > being a mature student > graduating university into What Next?


  • What is fear?
  • How it changes over time
  • Facing fear
  • How it impacts me as a person/how it will impact you as a person
  • How to rationalise fear and stop it turning into mental health issues
The Keith Blakemore-Noble Radio Show
The Keith Blakemore-Noble Radio Show
The One With Michael Jeffrey

Note – this is currently a highly automated transcription, so some of the text might not be wholly accurate – we are working on improving this over time!

You’re listening to the Keith Blakemore-Noble radio show, helping you transform your deepest fears into your greatest strengths. Here’s your host, Keith Blakemore Noble…

[00:00:30] Keith: Hello. Hello. Welcome back to another episode. Glad to have you with us on. I’m also glad today to have with me. Michael Jeffrey. Now Michael is an ex Royal Navy veteran who until recently was a mature students at the University of Northumbria, where he recently graduated with that’s class almost degree in business and supply chain management. Pretty impressive stuff. He’s also the founder of a new business called Trade Assist with James at helping tradesmen and trades women to successfully run their businesses in the new digital era. Now, in his spare time, he’s a keen mental health spokesman and a volunteer working with military charities to create a stigma free mental health environment. Very worthwhile stuff that he does there. That’s my guest today, Michael. How you doing, Michael?

[00:01:24] Michael: I’m great. Thanks for having me on. Are you excited?

[00:01:28] Keith: Cool. At my absolute pleasure to tow you. Thank you. Thank you for joining us. Now. I guess the first thing that springs to mind is you used to be in the Royal Navy’s You’re on extra maybe ten years. My goodness, Goodness, Now the whole theme of the old car the podcast is already fear and so on. So I’m getting for a lot of people on my two against. The perception is, if you beat in the Royal Navy. So I was shooting. Fear doesn’t mean anything. You have no fears. Just how accurate is that perception?

[00:02:07] Michael: Do you know it has being said to me in various forms over over the years? Of course. For May go like with fear around the corner, in every office, every every face it, you know. So there’s no such thing as not being scared of not being frightened of something. I’m certainly the hospice in time. Be like hot, fair promo and locally, through my experience in the journey that we discussed today Bunch to build up to a long to do, you know. So I’m probably less likely to be fed a massive situations more like to be beautiful of something like exam for large. Rather interesting. Yeah, you probably wouldn’t get for a decade and forced

[00:03:04] Keith: everything everything. So So It’s not a case that you have no fear. It’s just you have different ways of handling fear.

[00:03:15] Michael: Yeah. No, I’m not. If we look all the way back to when I was a teenager, remember the fifteen years old. I got permission off my parents, Teo, to join the Y M. C. I was a volunteer fitness instructor. Hawaiian Sea, and you are burning across across charity. So for God, they come and live in UK. We got some three weeks, Whatever that’s called on. I got a mission for repairs to go do that. So I went away for three weeks with brother of strangers. I lived in himself up in his house three weeks while I immersed myself in their culture from an early age of horse. Had the ability to sort of do you which obviously that went on you. Maybe you

[00:04:21] Keith: got you. All right. So well, let’s talk about it. And what was it like leaving home was a teenager and joining the military? I can only think back to how I was when I was a teenager. Something like that soon. Pretty daunting. Pretty scary. How How? How was it for you? On how the hundred year How do you handle it?

[00:04:45] Michael: Yeah, I always remember the day that I decided side Now I’ve always wanted to draw the navy. As you boys be Grandad used to work in the dock. Your prolific. So remember going down the hole He’s harmless. Take down there on the bridge and see big vessels I was always stopping with We’ll need a virgin are going to see most prominently fishing pounds of always being involved in some sort See? And boom. I went one they should careers advisor. When I was eighteen years old, you made your decisions on saying go through all the tests. I didn’t tell anyone. Know every power until I got a letter for you. Seeing being accepted how to start that. So So the start date. I think that point was wrong over six weeks away. So it was really you know, six weeks is leaving however long the walls. So when I talk me moment and he died, they doubtless like okay dot seven bombs like this. Oh, may I don’t this so I’d always wanted to do way. Think about this in terms of fear. I was up against Teo Teo to leave home to leave my comfort blanket leaving friends for a new It’s a lot of girls want to do in that instance for me the ambition or the warmth of the need to do something. I waited the fear, for instance. I didn’t quite know what I was getting myself into. So going with a little bit flying kind of helps boot as dimensional. Rome. I want to do the exchange itself for three weeks. It tells you, Go talk to you. I think there’s gonna be a certain type of personality from anyone who’s joining forces. You gonna be able to? To you. Being away from home is a many moments. So So we overcame by Mixture Blind Look, I’m a desire to be in force, but I do remember that the eighteen year old on the platform in Newcastle Attempt two thousand five I want to do We got the train don’t and it was funny because all not trains but the recruits who were going down on the same train and you could see all the fathers. These brothers cried the diets, pretending the camp Did you know your acceptance causing wass. That’s good. That’s the first time my brother did the forces of brother.

[00:07:50] Keith: Yeah.

[00:07:51] Michael: You know, when we got on the train, we root this seats were allocated in some ex future that starts getting. And I’m still friends to this day with one guy. It’s you a train station. You often wow helped as well with you going on your friend.

[00:08:18] Keith: Okay, so So from what you’re saying the leaving home to join the navy. One of the fears that many people would have in that situation is the being away from home. You were already slightly ahead of that. Could you have that exchange student programme a couple years earlier? So already you kind of building all previous experiences and using those to help you face the next challenge? Is that Is that a fair assessment?

[00:08:50] Michael: Yeah, I think that’s the lots of pretty much on your way to see

[00:08:55] Keith: Got it. That Yeah, we’re gonna make sense. I couldn’t make sense. And I like the fact that,

[00:09:03] Michael: you know, I didn’t mention that takes a certain type of person to go join forces for that. Maybe some of your listeners who went off and travel the world up university is not one of you. And then they would have had the same the same sort of four. So the trailer for this is that yet you don’t know it could be going into forty or your need, want or desire to experience something new overrules the initial feeling.

[00:09:41] Keith: Yeah, Nice. So the you got the fear, But the thing you want to do is bigger than the fears. A zit were, in fact, kind of What helps you find a way through it?

[00:09:56] Michael: You know, I was a lot of people. We’re moving countries travelling world joining cruise ships, and ten is going away. There’s a lot of stuff they need. I want to do that. I think initially,

[00:10:12] Keith: yeah,

[00:10:12] Michael: you come here or at least give me that step. And still not a college to start taking steps for. So it is for me anyway, your listeners.

[00:10:22] Keith: Yeah, right. So So I guess it’s It’s about finding, finding that get off, getting back in touch with the reason why you’re doing this thing in the first. Later using that, reminding yourself why you set out on the journey. Using that somehow find the inner strength to male toe to face the fears that your camping on the way. Yeah, Yeah. Okay. Slow, slow. Quick. Quick questions. Slight diversion question here for you. What? How do you describe? Described you define fear. What would you say? Fear is,

[00:10:59] Michael: you know, to me, is he’s it was created by you. I probably that’s created internally. So I would say it’s all about what might happen is supposed to what will happen. So it was an example. I’ve got to go to you first. Well, you know that. How did you know? That’s the only medical questions. And so therefore, put that into perspective. You know, unless you try something you know, going to know what it’s like, it more. And obviously the reason in life that’s a different type of fear. I called the university. I do think that a lot of people hold back on their dreams are mission because what My top, Robert I’ve given it a shot because it could

[00:12:02] Keith: Yeah, that that that makes a lot of sense. That makes a lot of sense. We’re not scared of what is happening. We’re scared of what they think we imagine might happen. And so often turnout ever happen in the first place.

[00:12:18] Michael: I’ve seen it. A lot of people in business they’re afraid to do or run a certain campaign do certain things with their business or scared or because of what might happen now where pre programmed to look at possible were stopped. So it was Oh, but that’s my name’s. Why’d you deliver ourselves with exactly what do you think? That experience over the last year, twelve years of my life put things in place, too, to reduce the national thoughts with me, which is a lot of meat to go free. It’s all business, that business get out like trying.

[00:13:11] Keith: Now I know from from speaking to you before we before we get, we came on air. There’s so many so many areas you you’ve gone through where you can to new fears after new fears. I want to talk about this for hours. Weighed only a short time, so we’ll have to kind of be a bit brief about it. I mean, you got the fear of the fears around leaving always teenager joining the military, um, the fears, with your first deployment on the shape that opens up a whole new load of fears. I understand you serve time in Iraq that must again brought about his own centre fears around their promotion. You were saying you were promoted and there were fears around that they also leaving the military? No, that was That was an interesting one. You mentioned that it was also a big source of fear. What’s what’s going on there? You go from being on a ship from being deployed in war zones to leaving the military and becoming a civilian again. Where? Where where is the fear coming in? That

[00:14:21] Michael: I think you understand that I’m going to take you

[00:14:25] Keith: back just

[00:14:26] Michael: like so. When When he called your basic tree and the all forces, they still tight discipline, type of courage and a commitment to the armed forces within you. So going from that to manage your shit on five ships so I could prove people every time I joined not to stop. When I want to assure establishment I’d be robbing new people as well. You’re handsome. Kamen was. Mavis makes things easier. First bears are still there. Then you mentioned Iraq also had done four clones which are completely different. You know, I don’t want Wait. What? Also, there was a pre deployment type is in my best shape possible to go deliver the job that I need to Theo and then whilst I was doing ultimately they’re going always look after me. If I need anything that beeping Holmes, I don’t have anything to live for. One of the things that I talked about quite a lot you suffer the own forces. I’m this close from legacy. So people left in the right present day. This is a professional opinion. The whole force is not the best dealing with people leaving the brother because Booth tends to be more wrong. You’re dealing with the puppet. Look at that. That’s cute. When you leave in the bucket head, you always go fear. No more really great society. And we’re seeing in fact so there is a lot of illness. Large, formless, no side Kids issue this, I think one of the magical because it’s leaving. So for me, when I left my fear wass what we’re gonna do, how long this form So then important for the pace of operations. So even when you don’t try, you’re still Friday Still do things by you Still monitoring the team with older people So you go from doing all that one day, I’d like to do nothing next. Party away from your identity. Stripped. Become from serving that too.

[00:17:43] Keith: Yeah, that makes a whole lot of sense because you’re I guess you’re going into a completely different way of life. So again, you’ve got all those unknowns possible. Those things you took for granted. Now you’ve suddenly got assault for yourself. You mentioned that you do with their forces challenges, particularly mental health and so on. We’ll finish off with that just before we reach there. You mentioned a couple times that you developed a few techniques, A few things you used to help yourself get over fears and conquer fears. And so can you briefly sort of share share some of those with us? What? What? Some steps that way. Take

[00:18:26] Michael: I know a refuelling team before the accurately fear. Unless it’s something that is really going to cause you home. Fearless is created within. And so what? I’ll have eyes. I’m looking for signs of storey. So I look at what happened. So what happened in the worst sense, what happened in the past and then it’s rationalising was fiercely protect my junior to diversity of the very first time I went to my first lecture are for most of the room I’m not gonna be scored on. I’m not going to stand there. People have been more than me because I’m just a cameraman wants you all that sort of fears which would probably off applying first place. No, no rationalised goes, feels on, then decided to just go ahead and do anything. Then I wouldn’t be where I know. Sure. As it turned out, I was the oldest in the room. Boat was also advises that their forms to so quickly with me in the reality of the situation see what I’m saying that because I rationalised that I just decided to do it anyway, right by the place and fears with actual optimists sports. So it’s a case of Just do it, Just do it. It’s always smart to cause you any major home. There’s no harm in doing so. It’s your best two hundred thousand pounds. And he got really carefully. What you doing up? No. Just do What’s the worst? That’s good.

[00:20:19] Keith: Yeah, I kind of smooth

[00:20:25] Michael: like experience. You never lose

[00:20:29] Keith: everything. Point.

[00:20:31] Michael: Yeah, You can experience we again what we wanted.

[00:20:36] Keith: Yeah, so do you. Do you think it helps? Sort of acknowledging that you have those fears and kind of just almost sitting down with fears and anthropomorphise the moors basically having a chat. So you get become fully aware of what those fears are so that now you know what they are. You can ain’t going to deal with things rather than just tryingto pretend the fears of the herring ignoring it.

[00:21:05] Michael: Yeah, exactly what you said before, where people go. Or do you think because I don’t I don’t want to think about what could happen. I would say, Well, if you do think about what happens when you rationalise it and then you see it for what it is you can almost hear enough fear into it’s just just else become more. They you You’re gonna take control, then lead on to you know, I’ve learned these lessons. You stole absolute super weak issues. Sure.

[00:21:57] Keith: Yeah. Go for it. I mean, we’re kind of coming to the end of our time, so yeah, let’s let’s dive into this.

[00:22:05] Michael: I left the forces. I did super with anxiety. I didn’t suffer which formed in public talks. Depression. It’s because of the reasons I discussed before. So going through working with professionals and dealing with it head on a lot of these issues. Law, this is C B team, cognitive behavioural therapy, same things for what is being present in the moment. All that failed to take away your abortions, which are panic attack, is a lot of these things you know very briefly off what allows you to to rationalise their back into it in a new take control of the line for you again. That’s very pretty for that. You got very open with my needs. More especially men, absolutely hiding things and unfortunately, starts a shoe. Most deaths a year are suicides are by man before, too, because of health issues about men, especially,

[00:23:25] Keith: yeah, that that’s an increasing way. You’re where you are, you’re focusing. That’s an incredibly important work with people who want to find out war. You can find out Michael’s contact Italy’s across social media. You’ll find out all the details on that on the show website Keith like noble dog called slash show for Michael Show, you find all this always contact details. There um, if if you could if you would sit down with the minister the minister in charge of all of the armed forces on if you could persuade him to take or her depending on when it when it is, if you could persuade them Tio, implement one single policy to help with the mental health off Ex military man. Copy. What do you think? Is that the one thing which which they should do, which would really help

[00:24:20] Michael: for you mentioned x. But actually I don’t want to start in serious. I want to start a recruit. Fears I want meant how you talked about from the day you walk in there all the way through every rung, every proves it. Male female who worked with the force is all in the forces. The old need to be aware that the stress the pigs of operations phase of life takes a toll, not just on them with families, they’re armed forces. Community is well, you know, that’s where I want to start to try and limit this sort of impact, that it’s happy there needs to be investment that needs to be that a lot of investment from Charlie’s hope yours or physical injuries, not mental by sea. Air Force has got to do. The local communities have got off your forces, but it’s still there,

[00:25:28] Keith: Sure, but I don’t absolutely love what you say there that it doesn’t start with. Bet It starts at the recruitment stage in stealing it right from that stage, working away through one’s career military career so that by the time one becomes a vet, you you’ve got the stuff in place anyway because it’s being placed a way through. I like that. I think you’re right that that this is an essential way of doing things. Well, Michael, it’s been an absolute pleasure chatting, You know, we could have talk for so much longer on this. Perhaps, perhaps who were Bell? Perhaps we will revisit part to this another in another episode. But for the meantime, thank you so much for taking your time. Michael. Good luck with everything you’re doing, particularly with the work we’re doing with the military on DH. As I mentioned, if you want to find out more information back Mike Leigh’s about what he does. Just pop onto the onto the Web site for the show, look for Michael’s episode finds contact details or social media stuff. There you could you get involved as well, helped helped her overcome the stigma around mental mental health and really make a difference in people’s lives. That really is it. For this episode, we have run out of time. Thank you for joining me. Thank you to my guest, Michael, for taking time out of his estate to join us. I hoped to catch you. Next time. I will leave you with Michael’s favourite quote. Beautiful quote. Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance

You’ve been listening to the Keith Blakemore Noble radio show Helping you transform your deepest fears into your greatest strengths. To find out more, please visit

Michael Jeffrey

Business Owner, Mature Student, Veteran

Michael is an ex-Royal Navy veteran who until recently was a mature student at the university of Northumbria where he has recently graduated with a first class honours degree in business and supply chain management.

He is also the founder of a new business called Trade Assist which aims at helping building tradesmen and women to successfully run their businesses in the new digital era.

In his spare time he is a keen mental health spokesman and volunteer working with military charities to create a stigma free mental health environment.

Keith Blakemore-Noble

Fear Strategist

Fear Strategist, coach, international speaker, multi-time best-selling author, hypnotist, occasional magician, and presenter of this show.

And someone who, for far too many years, was massively held back by a very strong social phobia – speaking with strangers, or even meeting strangers, was at best deeply uncomfortable, and at worst utterly terrifying for him. For far too many years.

So he did the logical thing – he pursued a 20 year career in IT with some success (becoming a Fellow of the BCS in the process).

Until one panic attack too many, which forced him to reconsider his life.

So he studied NLP and hypnosis, used those tools to conquer his own fears and phobias, and since 2010 he has helped others around the world to transform their deepest fears into their greatest strengths through his coaching, speaking, books, and trainings. Indeed, since 2010 he has helped over 5,000 people to transform their lives.

Having travelled the world for a while doing this, he has settled back in his native Scotland, where he is focusing on the next step in his journey of helping as many people as he can to conquer their fears. Which includes the launch of this Show!

Since 2010 Keith has helped over 5,000 people to transform their lives.

Now he brings the distillation of his experience into a weekly show designed to help you to transform your deepest fears into your greatest strengths.

Some episodes feature Keith running solo, discussing topics related to fear, phobia, mindset, and taking an interesting look into where it all comes from and what we can do about it.

In other episodes, Keith invites a special guest to join him and to discuss their experiences in overcoming their own fears, so that we can gain some insight into how we might do the same, or even to explore the more esoteric areas around fear – sometimes in some unexpected yet very interesting ways!

Presented in both audio and in video, across multiple platforms, so that the show can meet those who need it where they are.

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