Regardless if you’re a fan or not, we’ve all asked ourselves the same question: ‘What would happen if I went on The Bachelor or Bachelorette?’
Yeah, you might develop a little crush for the leading man/woman, gain a few thousand Instagram followers and maybe get a little career boost from your 5-minutes of fame, but what we really don’t think about is the impact it may mentally have on you.
One contestant who knows all too well the reality of being on such a challenging TV show is Luke McLeod. The 34-year-old, who was a contestant on Sophie Monk’s season of The Bachelorette and first season of Bachelor in Paradise thereafter, spoke to the Healthy-ish team revealing the most ‘intimidating’ moment he encountered filming.
“The very first scene is highly intimidating because you don’t meet the person who you’re vying for until this scene where you’re getting out of the limousine and you walk up,” he explains to co-hosts Maz Compton and Dr Andrew Rochford on episode 57 ‘When our private worlds become very public’.
“What a lot of people don’t notice and see is what’s behind her. There’s literally this camera crew; hundreds of people and camera just staring at you.”
McLeod recalls he “pretty much just froze” at this point, causing his anxiety levels to “peak” – and this was just the beginning of the emotional rollercoaster, which also affected the other contestants.
“It’s so isolating so you really don’t have anything else to talk about, so that’s why your emotions get so worked up about this situation that you’re in,” he explains.
McLeod, who is now the founder of Soul Alive Meditation, a live guided meditation service available via Instagram, helped provide guidance for the other men in the Bachelor mansion.
“I was actually running meditation classes in the house to help people work through it… most of them were accepting, there were a couple that I might’ve had to bend their arm a bit, but most of them were pretty keen to give it a go.”
However, as much as he remembers The Bachelorette experience being confronting and challenging, he admits it taught him a lot about himself.
“You grow from all these very awkward, weird situations and it can either go one of two ways – it can eat you up and affect you really badly, or you can learn from it and it can make you a stronger person.
“There have been times where I’ve struggled, obviously, but I certainly feel like I’m more of a stronger confident person from that experience.”
And even though he didn’t leave The Bachelorette with Sophie in his arms, he left with one particular life lesson he now urges everyone to consider: “I think we should challenge ourselves more often and put ourselves into uncomfortable positions – that’s where we learn the most about ourselves and where we grow the most.
“As hard as that is to do, I highly recommend anyone to jump into that deep end because that’s where you learn to swim.”
Also, just an FYI ladies, he’s single 😉
Want to hear more about fertility? Listen to episode 57 of Healthy-ish above, at Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts from.