Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Dec 21, 2020

After 20+ years as both an enlisted sailor and a commissioned US Navy SEAL officer,  Jon Macaskill transitioned out of the military in August 2020. Furthermore, he says his Navy journey was a wild ride and things didn’t go quite as planned. But, he says, they definitely worked out for the best!

Jon says he's been blessed to serve with some of the greatest men and women in the world, see places and do things most only read or dream about. Also, he’s thankful for the opportunity to honorably serve his country and defend his fellow Americans.

Now Jon is  the Deputy Executive Director for Veteran’s PATH. Veteran’s PATH is a nonprofit helping veterans rediscover meaning, purpose and joy through mindfulness, meditation and a safe community.


Episode Highlights:

  • First, Jon talks about what he did when he enlisted in the Navy.
  • Then Emily shares a story from Chris Stricklin's Onward Podcast episode that explains the importance of Jon's enlisted job.
  • Also, they discussed the lives he may have saved.
  • Then Jon talks about why he decided to attend the U.S. Naval Academy and become a SEAL.
  • After that, Jon describes the positions he held throughout his Naval career.
  • Emily asks what the toughest part of being a SEAL was for Jon.
  • Next, Emily asks how meditation would have helped Jon be a better SEAL.
  • Jon responds by explaining how meditation could have helped him throughout his life.
  • Veteran’s PATH is the nonprofit Jon works for now. 
  • He teaches mindfulness and meditation to veterans and service members.
  • PATH stands for: Peace Acceptance Transformation and Honor.
  • Jon shares how he felt hopeless when his daughter has a major surgery.  
  • After his daughter's illness, Jon took a job as the Commander of a Navy Operational Support Command.
  • Two days before his Change of Command, Jon  received a call from his sister to say she'd been battered by her then husband.
  • Consequently, Jon's reaction led to electronic harassment charges and he was not allowed to take over his new command.
  • Ultimately his anger led to sadness and depression.
  • Past trauma and survivor guilt had bubbled back to the surface. 
  • And, the medication numbed Jon's pain to the point he didn't enjoy life anymore.
  • Also, he came off mediCation and doctor recommended mediTation.
  • Jon explains how he stuck with meditation for months and how the effects started lasting longer.
  • Ultimately, he was able to talk about his feelings.
  • Than, Emily refers to a past Onward Podcast episode about feelings. 
  • When ignored, feelings  go to the basement and lift weights.  
  • Emily asks how Jon deals with the thoughts in his head when he meditates.  
  • The more he practiced mindfulness the less he had to think about it. 
  • Next Jon explains how meditation and mindfulness helped him enjoy simple things like feeding his baby daughter. 
  • And, he was able to be in the moment and not think about his task list.
  • Emily describes her frustrations from her last job and how she incorrectly assumed once she retired things would get better and she's slow down.  
  • Jon explains that “meditate” is on his daily to do list.  
  • Then Emily mentioned an Onward Podcast episode where the guest said if you do, do, do, you turn into do do.
  • Jon says there are times when medication helps. He's not anti-medication
  • Insurance doesn't cover some of the "newer" methods/alternative therapies.
  • Next Jon talks about some of these newer methods.
  • For anxiety, stress, depression, Jon highly recommends meditation prior to anything else. 
  • Furthermore, it’s perfectly safe. 
  • Also, things can bubble to the surface but you can process it properly.
  • Next, Emily describes meditating for 40 days straight and the feelings that came up. 
  • And these were feelings that she'd shoved to the basement. 
  • Also, once she dealt with them, she felt much better.
  • Then, Jon talks about his Veteran’s PATH podcast and the high performing guests he interviews on his show.  
  • Finally, Emily and Jon talk about how positive feedback helps them keep publishing podcast episodes. 
  • Ultimately, both Jon and Emily have a mission to help others.


Resources Mentioned: