Inspiring Insight with Tommy ‘Mantastic’ – Entrepreneur

The second edition of ‘Inspiring Insight’ is here and i’m chatting with Entrepreneur Tom Bellman. I assist Tommy with artwork for a number of his businesses across both print and web based platforms. His passion for business and life in general is contagious and the reason he was at the top of my list of insights to share with you all.
Tommy is a high energy, motivated successful 30 year old Mens Health coach living his “Mantastic Life” in Auckland, New Zealand.
From an early age Tommy had natural leadership ability and would always be doing his own thing and bringing others along for the ride. This included having a weekly video game article in the local newspaper “The Wimmera Mail Times” in his own town at age 12, starting his own computer business at age 14, sitting on council at age 16 to raise funds for a new skatepark/ BMX park and then ultimately moving towards a career in Health and Fitness/ Personal development as a young 18 year old.
As a trainer and coach Tommy is unique in his background. He has a degree in Health Science and Sports Management via Australia’s most prestigious university, Bond University and is currently studying towards his MBA via correspondence learning.
Before moving to NZ Tommy resided on the Gold Coast where he was a leading coach to personal trainers, as well as training his own clients. He moved to NZ at age 23, a move which absolutely no “Gold Coasters” could comprehend and it turned out to be one of the greatest things that ever happened.
Whilst continuing to remain an educator of trainers between Australia and NZ in the corporate world he started “TOMFIT Personal Training Studios” which from humble beginnings has now grown into a full commercial gym “TOMFIT GYM” with a team of 15 on Auckland North Shore. Tommy also practices what he teaches and has competed in 3 marathons and a 3 athletic bodybuilding competitions at a national level.
So far things sound like they are going OK for a young guy in his 20’s however working 80-100 hours per week chasing stereotypical success had its challenges including:
  • A complete disconnect with his family because he could never make the time
  • Constantly living in a state of stress and “go go go” mentality
  • Never being home or when he was he just fell straight asleep
  • Placing value on all of the wrong things such as nice cars, watches, clothes
  • Not living within his values and doing what truly made him happy internally
After taking a look at his personal values, his vision, what he was most passionate about and what he wanted to do in the future he decided to make some changes in order to be happy.
These included:
  • Learning about his personal values, what makes him happy and building a business around his personal values that he would truly be fulfilled in
  • Taking charge of his finances and getting rid of his high expense lifestyle
  • Reconnecting with family, friends and his partner and
  • Getting some rest and relaxation time
This led to the creation of the MANTASTIC LIFE company.
In order to stop other males going down the same path that he has been on he has taken charge and become a Mens Health, Exercise and Lifestyle coach aka “Mantor” for men that need to take charge of their lives, get in shape physically and mentally, make more money and have the confidence to take control of their lives.
His passion for education, speaking, teaching and learning will SOON be available to help the men of the world through their two hallmark programs “The Business of Designing a Mantastic Life” , High level coaching service “Mantoring” and corporate speaking.
Tommy truly believes that designing a life based around your personal values will lead to true happiness and fulfilment. He believes that getting strong physically and mentally, and developing yourself as a person leads to happiness and success in every area of life.
He is passionate about sharing this message and helping people around the world.

Tommy, you’re a man of many talents and have built a reputation for being ‘Mantastic” – where does this term come from, and what qualifies as living the Mantastic lifestyle?

A MANTASTIC life is a MANS Life that is Fantastic. In short you are living a Mantastic Life is you are living the life you wish to live and spending your time doing what you love. This means that a Mantastic Life is different for everyman. For example…If you love going fishing every weekend…and you do that…then that is MANTASTIC. However if you love fishing and you never go because you are too busy with work and not creating time to do the things you love, then that is not mantastic at all.
I have seen so many guys make money but all they do is work, and they are not happy…I was one of them.
I made no time to do the things that I loved and I didn’t make time to spend with the people that I love…All I did was work…and outside of work I didn’t really have a life…which was not mantastic at all or what I call MAN-NOT-TASTIC. 

What has been the biggest challenge you have had to overcome in your professional career and how did you do it?

The biggest challenge that I had to face was trading in a great corporate pay check and a successful side personal training business to “start from scratch” and fund the two projects that I wanted to do which were the TOMFIT GYM and the Manastic Life education program. I had lots of comfort and security however  I knew that if  I stayed “comfortable” I would never be able to do these two projects and I knew that if I committed to doing them that there was no way I was going to be “comfortable” for at least a couple of years.

There was no way I could do both due to time constraints and I am a big believer that if you do something that you should be all in. Once I did it I wish that I had done it a few years earlier – because the thrill of taking the risk and taking action for what I actually wanted to be achieving was instantly worth it – whether things worked out or not.
There is something magical about the journey of going for your goals.

As an Entrepreneur how do you stay motivated and avoid burning yourself out?
This is a great question. In the Mantastic Life program we use the analogy that you run your life like a business. For example I am the CEO of Tommy Pty Ltd. 
As the CEO I am responsible for the performance of my company. As part of the training to become a great CEO I needed to know what my vision and values were.
When you know what your personal values are you can then set goals that are in line with them and that will lead to fulfilment and the creation of more energy and happiness and you can just spend your time doing what you love.
When you do something that you love you will never stop thinking about it and constantly be coming up with new ideas to make it cooler or better…just because you love it.
Of course you need time away and balance to keep sharp. 
For me I love getting away for the weekend with my girlfriend and travelling somewhere around every 90 days or so. I also make sure I take the time to chat to my parents on the phone and make time for exercise. I keep things pretty simple.

I know you have worked in and been part of high pressure / high income, sales driven environments and stepped away to follow your own career dreams….how did that go for you?
Thats true. And I am thankful for that time as it really helped me develop a skill set and great work ethic that has helped me in my own ventures. Stepping away definitely wasn’t  easy ( I wish I had done it a year or two earlier) however it was necessary…I believe that if you have dreams that you have to go after them…
The reason why is that you can always go back to what you were doing (or something similar) and you have the skills…For me, like everybody else who has followed their dreams I had to give up comfort and security…and a few nice things. But once I did it I realised that it was the best thing I had ever done…and I never started with all of that stuff anyway and once it was gone I didn’t miss it.

You own a gym, Tomfit, among other businesses and often trade the Dolce and Gabbana shoes for trainers… how has this contrast changed your outlook on business and life in general?
I love it and I find it very refreshing and grounding. I come from a small country town in Australia where everybody talks to each other and nobody cares whether your shoes are D&G or a name brand.
I used to think that in business that you needed to wear a suit and tie and that you had to put on a “ front” to be successful. Through running the gym I have been blessed to meet some very successful business owners and they have taught me to be humble, work hard, be myself and to be genuine.
I know you’ve met some inspiring people and amazing business minds, who left the biggest impression on you, and why?
I have been fortunate enough to meet some amazing people. The person who left the biggest impression on me has been Bill Phillips. Bill is the author of the worlds best selling fitness program “Body For Life”, amongst many other huge successes in business.
I had always wanted to meet him as I had followed his work for such a long time. The amazing thing was that when I met him I learnt something completely different to what I expected.
When I met Bill I was a little bit materialistic and sought fulfilment through “things” rather than finding it internally.
Bill  taught me the importance of being others centred and focusing on creating value for others and being a good person.
If you could give one piece of advice to businesses and entrepreneurs who wish to further their success, what would it be?
Have passion and resilience. Passion so that  you are doing something that you are obsessive with and passionate about. This way time passes effortlessly and the things that you are doing are just cool ideas that you would like to bring into reality. 
Where resilience comes in is that sometimes things get tough….not everyone follows through on their promises and people can be difficult sometimes. You can run out of money, things take longer than expected…the list goes on. However because you love what you do this just makes you tougher and giving up isn’t an option.
I have learnt that it’s important to embrace the ups and downs and that often the downs teach you your greatest lessons – you just do not really realise it or become grateful for it until about 6 months later.

What’s next for Tommy Mantastic? what should we look out for in the future?

My goal is that the Mantastic Life program becomes the Worlds number 1 Health, Exercise and Lifestyle program globally! I would love to spend the rest of my life making a huge impact on others.

Tim Kavermann

As a Creative Director and a leading Brand Consultant my purpose is to help professional individuals and businesses showcase who they are and what they want to be known for. To support my consulting services I have established and matured Fuel Media, my boutique design agency that allows me to offer selected clients a full creative experience to develop their identity, positioning and communications.