A different life

A little background

Jonathan was born in South Africa in 1985, emigrated to Australia in 2010, and earned his Australian Citizenship in 2022.

Excellence and high achievement have been hallmarks of his personality in his continuous quest to improve his quality of life. He earned a highly valued degree in Law in Australia and South Africa, however, his current debilitating mental health condition prevents him from practicing professionally.

Despite his achievements, Jonathan, walked a very rugged, and sometimes merciless, path through his young life. Suffering trauma through severe, life changing burns, at the age of 20 months, parental divorce in his formative years, and a home invasion before his teenage years. In his later teens, he was caught up in a deportation experience from the USA, and by his early twenties, his mental health was beginning to impact his dreams of success through University. With his mental health taking its toll, Jonathan’s life took a dark turn away from further studies towards self-medication. But, despite his worsening condition and ongoing struggles, Jonathan pushed on to find his own normal life, however different it may have been from the life he’d hoped for himself.

Emanating from his mental health conditions and ongoing struggles, are the admirable qualities of empathy and benevolence. And, his understanding and appreciation of the human condition has deepened over the years. This grasp of another human being’s woes has driven him to put pen to paper and share his story so that others can learn just how powerful it is finding and living their normal life. Jonathan is determined to help others help themselves, and share that sometimes life isn’t what we’d planned … but it can be so much more than we’d dreamed.

With aspirations of a career as a lawyer, Jonathan embarks on the path to make his dreams come true, but is ultimately, unable to do so due to his schizoaffective experiences. In this candid and unflinching memoir, Jonathan reveals his story in all its rawness: the ups, the downs, the wins and the darkest of lows. Determined to discover his own normal life and find his purpose, Jonathan takes us on the journey of finding his different life from his earliest memories, right through his journey with mental illnesses. Pushing through the depths of his mental health to climb out of the darkness into the light, he shares his wisdom through simple, easy to use tools and principles that have been his answer to living his own, different life, and shares these principles for others who face similar challenges.

featured book

a different life

This has become his debut book, A Different Life, which is a must read for not only mental health sufferers, but their careers and practicing professionals, as a glimpse into the life of one living with mental health. The book has also become a brand with the same name, with the aim of reaching out to sufferers and showing them that it is okay to live life differently.

Ultimately each one of us has to rescue ourselves, and Jonathan’s story is living proof that all of us possess what it takes to be stronger, healthier and happier than we ever imagined.