The moment the producers of The Bachelor chose Peter Weber as the show’s lead over fan favorite Mike Johnson was the first sign that 2020 would not go as planned. I speak for the vast majority of Bachelor Nation when I say that the casting was a big disappointment, one that led to the most cringe-worthy season yet.
We got a bit more of Johnson’s down-to-earth charm on Bachelor in Paradise, but he left the beach alone once again. While his journey on reality TV came to an end (for now, at least), it’s all for the better. He didn’t find a partner, but he did find love, and he wants to teach others how to do the same. His debut book, Making the Love You Want, comes out this Friday, October 2.
The book details the Grand Prairie native’s life story, from his time in the United States Air Force, to his time on ABC, to his experience as a financial advisor, focusing on how he’s overcome self-doubt and limiting beliefs.
“I found in all my travels and experiences that I’ve had, that people quite honestly all have the same problems and tribulations, no matter how high up we are, or how down we are. I felt that in my own struggles in life,” says Johnson. Being a book lover, he wanted to put his stories on paper to show people how to “stand up in their power, how to get the voice that you so desperately desire and how to truly love yourself to the fullest–every single day, even days that tore your heart.”
He urges readers to stop looking for external validation and focus on the internal journey, a piece of advice he says has kept him sane after the sudden celebrity that came with appearing on The Bachelorette. While the response was overwhelmingly positive, Johnson also dealt with a fair amount of hate after entering the spotlight.
“Having a platform on social media, that’s where we get the trolls and get people who almost forget we’re human beings–that we have a mother, a father, and family members that care about and love us,” he says. “I smile when I say that, but people can be rude at times.”
Getting past these judgements has ultimately helped Johnson grow and gave him more experience to write from.
Now that he’s finished his debut book, Johnson is getting ready to move from his home in San Antonio to Austin, where he’ll live with Connor Saeli, a fellow Bachelorette contestant.
When it comes to his love life, he admits that dating has been a little bit different since garnering an army of admirers: “I have been blessed, right? I have a persona, a face that people know me as. It’s not necessarily hard to get a date.”
Still, he’s careful not to let all the attention change who he is. “If you walk into a room and your head is so big that it can’t fit, you have to work on yourself,” he says.
As he explains in Making the Love You Want, it’s all about the inner journey and cultivating self-love that’s free from external validation.
“Just because someone says no to you, it doesn’t mean that you can’t say yes to yourself,” he says.
And just because ABC didn’t give him the air time he deserved, it doesn’t mean we can’t keep following Mike Johnson’s journey. You can pre-order his book on his website or Amazon.