You might know him as a global adventurer, philanthropist, motivational speaker, author or the guy behind the Netflix series, The Kindness Diaries. All in all, Leon Logothetis, is a Spiritual Gangster who set out to radically change his life after realizing he was unhappy with his day-to-day lifestyle. Logothetis set out to uncover authentic connections and plant seeds of kindness around the world. As a result, he has drastically touched the lives of those he's met upon his travels. We were fortunate enough to sit down with Leon and explore the power of kindness and leading a life full of intention and presence.
What inspired you to embark on your journey in season one of The Kindness Diaries?
Well, as a kid I felt very alone. I felt very profoundly alone at school and as I became an adult that loneliness continued but, as a kid I had one teacher in particular who was very kind and I never forgot about her or her kindness. On some subconscious level, it must have been her kindness that inspired me to embark on my journey because her kindness kept me going. I also stumbled upon a movie, The Motorcycle Diaries, a romanticized version of Che Guevara traveling around South America relying on only kindness. Something about that movie really inspired and touched me; it made me realize there is another way to be. There is another way to live. So, to cut the long story short, I quit my job and started traveling around the world on the kindness of other people. The ultimate conclusion of watching that movie is The Kindness Diaries.
It’s incredible to see how influential teachers can be. In your own life, when did you get to a point where you realized that what you were doing essentially wasn't what you wanted to be doing; you said you were a broker?
Yeah so I had been living someone else’s life; chasing someone else’s life and The Motorcycle Diaries showed me I could chase my own life, my own dreams and I could, you know, do things my way per say, whatever that is. I didn’t want to feel shackled - which you know is not unique to me. Many people live shackled.
How difficult was it for you to make the transition?
Honestly, it wasn’t difficult at all. I was in so much emotional pain and I was so depressed and isolated, I felt I was up against a wall.
You’ve met a lot of people through your travels, is there one person in particular who made a profound impact on your life?
The homeless guy who I met in Pittsburgh. I ended up walking around Pittsburgh asking people if they would help me and along the way, I asked this guy if I could stay with him; I didn’t know he was homeless. So I asked this guy, “Can I stay in your house tonight?” and he looks at me and goes, “I’m really sorry but I’m homeless.”
I was about to walk off and he turns around and says, “but you know what, if you want, you can stay with me tonight. I’ll protect you and give you some clothes.” And that’s exactly what he did and he taught me a really profound lesson: true wealth is not in our wallets, it’s in our hearts.
What does kindness mean to you?
Kindness to me simply means helping someone feel less alone. That’s it.
Is there one place in the world you found their were people were particularly kind?
I would say there are a couple of places - Bhutan, that was season one, and Canada. Canada was amazing - I love the Canadians.
Do you have any daily practices that have helped you be kinder to yourself and to the world?
I meditate, I basically journal on a conscious level to focus on the positive. I always try to bring myself back to a place of being in my heart and trying to be as present for myself, and others, as I can. I try to live from my heart. Another practice I have is to watch, and read, and listen to inspiration.
What is your favorite challenge in your new book?
Ultimately, my favorite challenge is to make someone feel less alone. Or, the music challenge. When you hear or see someone through their music, it’s a beautiful thing. Music touches our soul - you can feel their spirit.
Why do you feel spreading kindness is so important?
We live in a world where people have forgotten kindness is a part of who we are. We get bombarded in our day-to-day and there is a, vibration of love, a vibration of beauty in all of us. I think shining the light of hope on people instead of darkness is important.
Out of all the lessons you’ve learned, what do you think has been the most significant lesson?
The most significant lesson is that kindness is a part of who we are and you have to get in touch with it. It’s a part of our DNA, our humanity.
Who do you feel is the kindest person or is there someone who inspires you?
I am inspired by Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr., Gandhi. Again, not perfect people by any stretch of imagination.
If you could give one piece of advice to the world - what would it be?
I would quote the great man Winston Churchill and say “never never never give up.”
Follow Leon on Instagram @thekindnessguy