Even after facing a lot of challenges, fighting with his demons in the form of depression, Robert chose to lead a life filled with positivity, inspiring the world.
A close look at the world around us right now will let us know how the ‘happy’ faces that we see fight the most stressful battles in life and live with depression. Depression is like a demon which has made a home in people’s mind and it plays around that till the individuals lose hope, thinking life couldn’t get worse than what it is for them at present. But, what most of these individuals fail to see is that there indeed is light at the end of the tunnel, and right when an individual thinks everything is coming to an end, is when a new chapter begins in his/her life that gives hope to them and the positivity they need in life. Similar is the real-life story of a passionate fitness athlete, who saw it all, but chose the path of happiness and fought all his mental, emotional and psychological demons to emerge as an individual that seeks more from life, more happiness and more joy; he is Robert Abruzzese.
Robert excelled in college, both academically and in sports. With the aim to serve his nation, he courageously decided to be a part of the army and enlisted himself as a marine officer post the gruesome attacks of 9/11. However, a certain pre-existing neck and back injury which Robert had suffered as a teenager led to his rejection of joining the army. Not taking NO for an answer Robert was told by a recruiting officer to enlist with the Army but withhold the information of his accident otherwise he would be disqualified again. Not long after he enlisted in the army as a Cav Scout 19D. The most forward combat Military Occupational Specialty the Army has. This front-line role entails reconnaissance, kicking in doors and being the first ones in perilous areas. He went through a rigorous 22-week OSUT training at Fort Knox, Kentucky. He stood out amongst the rest and was given the name of ‘badass killer’ for his toughness, hard work and commitment.
However, the army training rose the physical pain while he was on a 10-mile battalion run. The weight they have to carry accentuated, thus getting him discharged from the army. He returned to finish his last year of college then moved to work in New York City.
Life was good for Robert until he got involved into a number of toxic relationships, social pressures, financial struggles and some recreational drug use. This accumulated to cause an underlying genetic vulnerability to come to the forefront as he had been diagnosed with clinical depression.
“I was always in the party scene; it was almost like nightlife was more important than anything you would do doing during the day. I kept comparing myself to other people, it was about who has got the most expensive hoodie, who is spending the most bottles”.
During this phase Robert went through a lot challenges keeping up with his peers whom were deep in the nightlife scene which involved recreation drug abuse and heavy alcohol consumption. “The amount of stress I was under was one of the major reasons that aggravated my depression. My entire system had become vulnerable and the battle against mental illness and depression had drained me out completely“. It was that bad that one night he decided that it was over and he was hospitalized after an attempt to take his own life. It was then that Robert thought seeing a psychiatrist would help him better his state of mind.
With the help of his psychiatrist, he began replacing his negative habits and thoughts with positive ones, and started focusing on health and fitness and channeled all his energy towards it. Today, working out and going to the gym acts like therapy to Robert, who knows how through hitting the gym, he can release his energy and aggression.
His fitness game got so strong that he even participated in Men’s physique competitions, worked at the Equinox South Beach, got signed by a fitness modeling agency, did acting, got sponsorship’s and earned great experience at all these things. Robert’s passion for fitness has helped him change his life completely. He even got introduced to Grant Cardone, read more books, and drew more inspiration.
All through the process, the fitness athlete understood the power of positive thoughts and a positive mindset and how it can transform a person’s life completely, helping him/her to not only fight depression but also improve upon one’s mental well-being. Depression might have been an obstacle in Robert’s life, but this man chose to live a happier life and thus, fought against the demons to emerge as a positive thinking individual who now is at much more peace in life.
Follow Robert on his Instagram account for more inspiration.