Creative Minds: Jonathan Leary
Jonathan Leary, founder, and CEO of Remedy Place sat down with us at BELLO and spoke to us about his journey from having a dream to turning it into a reality. Having known at a young age that he wanted to pursue a career in healthcare, there was no doubt in Leary’s mind as to what he was meant to do in life! Fascinated by the human body he studied anatomy, physiology, neuroscience, and more. Remedy Place, a social wellness club meant to help you find balance in your life, was Leary’s original practice idea which, after nine years, finally came to life. As you step into Remedy Place, you are sure to leave feeling relaxed and aided in any specific area your body needs. Bringing to you the love and care you deserve, Jonathan Leary poured his heart and soul into Remedy Place so you can feel right at home! Enjoy!
You have time travelled back to the day you decided to study anatomy, physiology, neuroscience, clinical nutrition, and rehabilitation. What was running through your mind? What inspired you to pursue these studies?
I knew that I wanted to work in healthcare at a very early age. I was fascinated by the human body! I worked and volunteered in hospital settings throughout my high school and college years, which I thought was going to guide me in the direction I wanted to practice, but instead, it did the opposite. I knew that the type of care I wanted to offer was vastly different from what I was seeing in the hospital. Something was missing but I had no idea what other options were out there. I had heard of alternative medicine but was never exposed to it growing up in Rhode Island. I loved the idea of holistically healing the body so I headed to chiropractic school out west to find out more. That’s where it all started!
What was your favorite class during your studies? Why?
My anatomy cadaver lab. In order to fully get an understanding of every single aspect of the human body and how it works, there is truly no better way than to dissect the body from head to toe. It’s a little weird at first, but once you get over the strangeness of the whole experience, there is honestly nothing more fascinating than getting to literally see what everything in the body looks like. I am a very visual person – whether I’m manifesting goals or absorbing new research – and this lab allowed me to perfect my anatomical understanding. My passion translated into great results, too. Not only was I a teaching assistant and tutor for my colleagues, but I seriously contemplated changing the direction of my schooling to become a surgeon (which would have led me down a different life path entirely).
Who was someone (teacher or peer) who truly inspired you?
While I was going through my doctorate, I launched my own concierge personal training company focused on the niche of people leaving physical therapy but who weren’t quite ready to jump right back into the gym. For two years, I had one particular client that was a hugely successful entrepreneur in the luxury health/beauty space. Spending time with him each week and learning from his mentorship impacted me drastically. Starting my mornings 3x/week with a very experienced business leader was extremely motivating. Hearing and seeing the highs and lows – the stress and rewards – as well as all the pivoting in between allowed me to get a glimpse inside the life and world of an entrepreneur. It was a world that I badly wanted to be a part of, and knew it could be the catalyst I needed to make a meaningful difference in transforming the healthcare landscape. It gave me a window into what my life was to become as I started my practice and future companies.
Did you ever think about changing paths? If so, what other careers would you have considered pursuing?
Other than that brief moment when I thought about pursuing surgery – never. My work is my passion and I really do enjoy every moment of it! The best part about my latest endeavor is it allowed me to explore life outside of being a doctor and only seeing patients. Starting Remedy Place, the first fully holistic social wellness club in the world, has allowed me to grow personally and professionally more than I could have ever imagined. Building a company from the ground up, learning new business skills, raising capital, brick and mortar expansion, construction, marketing, interior design… I mean the list goes on and on. The exposure to all the above allowed me to find other passions that I never even knew about which has really made me much more well-rounded.
Share with us the story of how “Remedy Place” came to be. What were some obstacles you faced?
Remedy Place was my original practice idea. Throughout my doctorate, I spent every Sunday working on my business plan to make sure I was prepared the moment I graduated and got my license. Little did I know, getting a business loan right out of school was impossible. I can still picture it like it was yesterday…I was freshly graduated from school, I’d spent the better part of the last half-decade mapping out every conceivable detail of my dream business plan, and I walk into the bank with all the confidence in the world. Suffice to say, their response took the wind out of my sails pretty quick. They basically started laughing before finally asking “sir, how are we supposed to give you a loan with only $2,000 in the bank and all of your student loan debt?” I was young, naïve, and clearly had no idea how a business loan worked.
So I did what my mentors had taught me: I pivoted, opened up a concierge private practice, and then used the next 5 years to perfect my business model by incorporating 5 years of clinical evidence as well as learning the ins and out of everything I needed to know about business. After 9 years of dedication and hard work, Remedy Place has finally come to life.
How did working on developing this innovative concept help you grow as a person?
As noted above, there is no better way to learn than to start from the ground up. Every challenge, every obstacle, and every feeling of discomfort forced me to grow. Now, I actually find comfort and excitement with instability and hardship. When I look back at all the most challenging times of my life, I see that after each one, I came out the other end stronger and more well-rounded. it makes me continually push myself for more self-growth.
What do you hope your clients will feel when stepping into the establishment?
When guests walk into the club we want them to feel at ease, welcomed, loved, and relaxed. I took all the psychology I knew and applied it to the design to make sure that the emotional effect was perfect. Everything was taken into account: from the lighting to the sounds, smells, textures, masculine/feminine energy, and yes – even taste! I wanted it to be distinct from every other medspa or clinic; we want you to feel like you are walking into your home.
Can you talk us through a typical day at Remedy Place? How does the process work?
Guests/members will be greeted by our holistic team of recovery specialists or one of our alternative medicine doctors. If they have not already booked in for an appointment, our team will help analyze what that individual may need for that specific day. We analyze every stress that they put on their body, anything they may be struggling with, or if they just want to enhance their health and then create the perfect experience for them that day. That said, Remedy Place is more than just a place to get a treatment. It is about the experience and the social atmosphere that comes with it. Human connection is an important part of healing and instead of the isolation that most people are used to in a spa, Remedy Place is best experienced with others to make it social. It is the perfect substitution for a date spot, meeting, where you go after work to unwind, a Sunday brunch alternative, or just a place to meet new people that are like-minded.
Here are some of the treatments that you or you and a friend can experience: chiropractic, physiotherapy, Chinese Medicine, acupuncture, cupping, vitamins IVs, vitamin injections, hyperbaric oxygen chambers, breathwork ice bath classes, lymphatic drainage massage, infrared sauna suites, meditation/breathwork/stretch/educational classes, cryotherapy, or a drink or snack in our bar/lounge. Furthermore, it is perfect for a corporate outing, a birthday, or any group gathering!
You have also helped a variety of people from celebrities to athletes and more. What would be your best advice to those who come in before starting the healing process?
To make sure that they are prepared to put in the work to accomplish their health goals. Only that individual has the power to make themselves healthy. It is my job as their healthcare provider to provide the solution and plan and speed something up along the way but I can’t fix everything if they aren’t willing to put in the work. It is so important for my patients to establish their own health independence, take control, and put in the hard work for them to heal themselves.
Tell us more about what helps YOU heal.
One of my tag lines is, “is your doctor the healthiest person you know?!” It is a huge priority of mine to practice what I preach, not only to control my own health but also to lead by example! Every single thing at Remedy is part of my self and preventive care routine. I get my functional medicine blood work done every six months so that I fully understand what is going on in my body and can change my regimen accordingly. On a weekly basis, my favorite part of my routine are my adjustments, ice baths, and hyperbaric oxygen chambers. Lastly, my day-to-day is 7 hours of sleep, 5 liters of water, varying types of restorative movement, a 15-minute breathwork series, a visualization manifestation meditation, intermittent fasting, and a vegetable-based diet.
How do you usually prep for a talk? What is your favorite part about them?
A great night of sleep, a pep talk, and visualizing exactly how I want to perform. I used to hate public speaking growing up (and I know I’m not alone in this) but I discovered if you love what you are talking about, it makes it so much easier! There is no better feeling when you step on stage, get a huge rush of endorphins, and get in a flow state! I see education as a critical missing cornerstone in our healthcare system so talks allow me to connect with a lot of people at one time than I do in my one-on-one’s with patients.
Any 2021 plans/resolutions?
Where do I begin?! There are a lot of them so I’ll just tell you my top three personal and professional goals.
- Successful launch of Remedy Place #2, while also being halfway through construction of club #3.
- Push the education side of Remedy Place. From starting our own podcasts to creating my own seminar for alternative medicine doctors as their continuing education, and doing as many huge talks as possible (maybe digitally given the current climate).
- Continue to push myself to become a better leader, by adapting, learning, growing, and being the best person I can be.
- Stick to my weekly entrepreneur coffee group. This is a relatively new thing that I started to do with a group of buddies that all have early-stage startups. I cannot say how helpful this has been and how it has truly enhanced my life to discuss the challenges and process of building and scaling a new company.
- Have my heart open for love.
- Sell my current home and then begin construction on a new one. I get so much out of the design process, I had a blast renovating my first house so I’d love to have the opportunity to do this every couple of years or so.
Talent JONATHAN LEARY @drjonathanleary
Photography ALEX EVANS @alexevansphotography
Interview by ALEXANDRA BONNET @alexbonnetwrites
Remedy Place www.remedyplace.com