Dylan Beynon is the Founder & CEO of Mindbloom, a telehealth psychedelic therapy startup. Dylan founded Mindbloom to help people treat mental disorders with clinically back solutions involving ketamine.
This is Dylan’s third startup and he has already raised money from some blue chip investors, including Founders Fund.
Mindbloom is on pace to deliver 100,000+ psychedelic therapy sessions by the end of 2021 and is aiming to climb from 13 to 42 states of operation.
In this episode, Dylan and Aaron discuss finding a Chief Medical Officer, ketamine’s history of use, and Dylan’s vision for a healthier future.
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Dylan Benyon’s Challenge; Take 110% responsibility for your mental health. Read a book about mental health and well-being like Awareness by Anthony de Mello, The Surrender Experiment by Michael Singer, and Letters From a Stoic by Seneca.
Connect with Dylan Benyon
If you liked this interview, check out our interview with Henry Schuck where we discuss sales and taking ZoomInfo public.
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Aaron Watson [00:00:00]:
Hey, you're gonna love this interview with Dylan Bynan all about how psychedelics can treat mental health disorders. His startup mind bloom is administering ketamine to all sorts of different use cases. And in today's interview, we not only talk about the origins of the company and how to build a telehealth startup, but a whole lot more.
Dylan Benyon [00:00:27]:
people with anxiety and depression now. but there's some great clinical research around ketamine and other psychedelic therapies efficacy for things like OCD, PTSD, eating disorder, social anxiety disorder, couples therapy,
Aaron Watson [00:00:45]:
Well, Dylan, thanks for coming on the show, man. I'm excited to be talking with you.
Dylan Benyon [00:00:49]:
Thanks, Aaron. I'm fired up.
Aaron Watson [00:00:51]:
So, in the world of startups, and particularly saliently post pandemic. this concept of telehealth telemedicine, is either the, you know, I've I've friends who've been, like, consultants in health care for 20 years, and they're like, we've been talking about this forever, or there's people like, wow, cutting edge, new, be Boop. and and the 2 kind of brands in my mind in the startup world that epitomize that, that listeners may be more likely to be familiar with if they haven't yet heard of Blue are Roman and HIMS. Romans raised $876,000,000. They'll, you know, send you a testosterone and other sort of products, hims, you know, similar beachhead hair loss, erectile dysfunction, depression, via exclusively a telehealth visit. to help people start off, can you kind of use them as almost like a foil or a a a a cousin of yours to explain what's similar about mind bloom and what's different?
Dylan Benyon [00:01:48]:
Yeah. Absolutely. the CEO of him, Andrew Durham, is actually a really close friend of mine of, like, 15 years. He was a year younger than me and my fraternity at Penn. And I probably wouldn't be building mine. I believe it wasn't for the, trail that he blaze building the biggest telemedicine company, I think, in the world. Wow. yeah. So so Mindbloom is a direct to consumer brand, that's helping people achieve life changing, clinical, and personal breakthroughs. with at home psychedelic therapy. Specifically, we're using ketamine therapy, which is the only prescribable psychedelic medication in the US to help people today with anxiety and depression, in, I think, about 15 states reaching, 70% of the US population soon to be most of the US. there are a lot of similarities between us and hims and Roman. we have a a network of partner providers who are prescribing the medication and overseeing the medical care. but there are also some differences. one is in addition to the prescribing of the treatments, we also provide a network of coaches who are psychedelic guides who are going deep with people to help them prepare get the most out of their experiences and then integrate those experiences or actually take what comes up and put it into action in their life and leverage the neuroplastic state created by psychedelics to create real behavioral and emotional changes in their life. and we also have a sort of headspace are calm for psychedelic therapy app that includes music and meditations and therapeutic programs for things like anxiety and depression and self love and and loneliness and other indications and issues. so it kinda combines those 3 things. As a result, whereas HIMSS might spend, you know, 6 minutes with every patient. we're spending over 6 hours with every new client that goes through, 6 session course of treatment with Mind Blue.
Aaron Watson [00:03:44]:
Gotcha. And so is the the basic thesis here, you know, Mind Blue and and just kind of generally, positioning it as a psychedelic as treatment for mental health challenges type of brand. at least in the short to midterm opens the door where, you know, kinda ketamine would be the beachhead, so to speak, And, you know, where some of those other brands, maybe they started with hair loss or ED, and then they kinda start to expand their suite of offerings with later rounds of funding, more patients, kinda more proof positive. is the idea that as other, psychedelic treatments gain more regulatory approval, mind bloom would be kind of positioned to, already have that entree already have that brand equity and maybe they're just kind of frankly muscle of helping people deal with that. Is that kind of the thesis?
Dylan Benyon [00:04:34]:
so that's definitely a piece of the strategy. Right? Like, we're, as you pointed out, using ketamine as a wedge or beachhead to build the consumer brand provider network, distribution channels, therapeutic programs and software, such that as these other medications, such as MDMA assisted therapy in early 2023, psilocybin assisted therapy in 24, 25, and there's about a dozen other psychedelic medications in phase 1 and 2 clinical trials. There are phase 3 phases of clinical trials that take usually 12 years. know, we're best positioned to rapidly get those medications to all the people who need them as quickly as possible and help them get the most out of them. But I think there are a couple other, key differences that are maybe even more core to our strategy. one is Whereas HIMSS looked at this medication that was, sort of off patent and generic and able to be prescribed at a more affordable price They saw a medication where, because essentially dudes historically don't go to the doctor, there were it was massively underserved So a lot of people, doctors believe should be using these medications, but aren't because they don't go to the doctor. It's inconvenient. It's embarrassing. It's expensive to buy it on labor, on, patents. It's like on patent, propecia, versus generic finasteride. and there's a stigma problem. so people see it as weird or scary or gross or or itchy or they just don't know about it. and so they have created this consumer brand and telemedicine platform to dramatically increase access to treatment. my bloom is similar in that we saw some similar issues with ketamine therapy. it's really new and scary for people. A lot of people don't know about ketamine therapy as an available treatment. I was extremely expensive before mind bloom. average cost of treatment was, like, 600 to $1200 a session, and we brought it down to less than 200 per session. and it was really the hard to access aren't that many academy clinics. They're more growing, but still to have somebody drive you a couple hours or an hour to a clinic, sit with you for 2 hours, drive you back, twenty times over the next year, is a huge, burden and inconvenience. and also it's not a really great experience sometimes to go into, like, a medical clinic. But there's another key difference, which is, Hym's and Roman are taking these really established and, you know, large in terms of 1,000,000,000 of dollars of sales, medications, and creating a better way for people to access them in a better brand and a better experience, a mind balloon, we're taking this medication that pretty much nobody is using. So when you, when you dig into the mental health care crisis, which is largely considered like the number one public health care crisis, what you find is that the existing treatment options that Tens of millions of Americans are using, like SSRIs, like Prozac and Lexapro, or even Talk Therapy, just aren't that effective. A lot of psychiatrists go into psychiatry or mental health care to help people, and then they're given, like, a hammer and chisel. Like, like, we're still in the age of mercury and blood letting and and leeches when it comes to mental health care. When you look at the clinical research around ketamine therapy, What you see is it's just ten times more effective. so SSRIs only work for, like, any ifs for cir Island works, like, 40 to 47 percent of the time. It takes 6 to 8 weeks to work. It has horrendous side effects for over 50% of people like weight gain, sexual dysfunction, insomnia, suicidalities, severe anxiety, and people get stuck on this daily medication they don't want to be on. Acadamine therapy is clinically shown to work for 65 to 70% of people, it works right away. It doesn't have these side effects. and it can be taken periodically. And in my mind when we're getting people even better clinical outcomes because we've combine the coaches and mental health care providers who are helping people before, during, and after get the most out of these experiences to drive better results. So it's both the increasing access, but it's also about getting people to switch from these legacy treatments to the new treatments of the future that, you know, that is what we're gonna see mental health care look like over the next 5 to 10 years.
Aaron Watson [00:08:44]:
Interesting. So can before we take it a step any further, people generally will have, you know, heard of psychedelics or probably at at the maybe the low end of the spectrum, they've never, you know, tried anything in any way, shape, or form, and they've watched some movie where, like, someone did it. And then, you know, don't know if it's addressed Thompson or or whatever, but, you know, in the context of that, candidly, I, you know, either have tried or know more about I would say LSD and psilocybin and MDMA because those just seem at least to me, like, more culturally more likely to hear about that. Maybe just, I'm not a sophisticated, like, a hip hop song or in reference to going to a festival. Can you talk about ketamine maybe in the context of those other ones? What where's this being derived? Like, what's the kind of history of it?
Dylan Benyon [00:09:31]:
Yeah. so Ladies pointed out most people know about LSD or psilocybin Magic Mushrooms. those are what are called classical psychedelics They act on your serotonin system, which regulates, like, mood as well as a bunch of other things. and they really sort of actuate at serotonin system and, sort of subjectively or phenomenologically, like what it feels like, enhance all of your senses, the point of extreme distortion. And that's where, like, a classic trip feels like. That's your visual senses, your auditory senses, your own factory senses, and your cognitive senses. MDMA is a little different in that it's, like, empathogenic experience that also acts on your serotonin and dopamine systems. And so it feels for people like this deep sense of connection to others, this deep, sense of, sort of warmth in euphoria. which can be really is powerful for a lot of mental health and well-being issues, but especially PTSD, this allows people to open up so they can deal with and interact with their trauma in a healthy way and then overcome it. Academy, combines a a little bit about to, but it actually acts on, like, a complete different receptor system. So it acts on your glutamate system, which is the most common neurotransmitter in your brain, and it sort of has the sense of cutting off your senses. and so for people, they can feel like this very out of body experience, where it almost feels like it's way more in the background, and they have a lot of memories that can come up, similar to MDMA, but not to the same degree. It can feel very empatogenic, and people can feel this deep sense of connection with others and the universe. But maybe most importantly, what it does is it creates the state of what's called neuroplasticity in the brain, which LSD and soul siding also do, whereby, people have this enhanced sort of creativity and this enhanced brain state where they're able to more able more easily able to create, like, new connections in the brain. and so both during the experience and then for, like, 1 to 2 weeks after, people are able to actually change their behavior, whether that's creating new behaviors or breaking bad habits, and take a lot of the insights that came up during the experience and put those into action.
Aaron Watson [00:11:50]:
Interesting. So is basically the the I I don't wanna say numbness because I don't think that's really what you were saying. You you you obviously have the more precise language of explaining these experiences for folks, but the kind of, cutting off of other senses, that's related to why this is actually DA approved because its history is less on a mental health angle and more as an anesthetic for, you know, helping people with other procedures. Is that why this is been approved for a while, and other ones are, like, you know, 2023, maybe sometime down the line. Yeah. And so as Academy was FDA approved as an anesthetic,
Dylan Benyon [00:12:25]:
and analgesic in 1970. It's over 50 years ago now. it's been widely used worldwide as one of the safest anesthetics since then, and it's used every single day and every single emergency room in the United States. even in World War 2, it was a medication that every single soldier had on them because if somebody was undergoing some physical trauma, Kevin was the safest way to sort of knock them out so that they wouldn't go into shock and so that they could be taken back and and and worked on. about 20 years ago, some really enterprising psychiatrists and researchers at Yale discovered that at really low sub anesthetic doses, it had these antidepressant effects, and people, you know, have also used it recreationally at these low sub anesthetic doses, So this is, like, you know, 1 20th to 1 5th of what a child would receive in the emergency room. at those low doses, we could talk about the brain chemistry. And if you're interested, but essentially at those low doses, it has a different effect and it has these psychedelics effects, and it has this, this neuroplastic effect for people, that is very much like a psychedelic experience where people can see sort of shapes and colors and visions and feel warm and pathogenic and have these insights from their own memories or things that come up cognitively that are these like, epiphany moments, that can last for people for the rest of their lives.
Aaron Watson [00:13:52]:
Gotcha. So when you're booting up a company like this, you know, we this audience is familiar with, you know, the difference between the VC track and bootstrapping. and there's some kind of obvious basics of, you know, we we gotta, you know, figure out how we're selling this thing. We gotta how the, you know, if it's software, how the code's being written or if this is a physical good, how it's, you know, being produced and and shipped to where it needs to go, Can you take us through some of the blocking and tackling of getting a company like this off the ground? Because, you know, there's a there's a telehealth component where you're having, I believe you said guides or coaches who are, you know, actually interfacing with people. You have partners that you have to develop. that are, I I would imagine the ones actually writing the scripts, and then some sort of, like, pharmaceutical supply chain to actually get this controlled substance into people's homes. I'm guessing, you know, as you said, direct to consumer. So via the mail system.
Dylan Benyon [00:14:51]:
so can you just maybe talk us through that? That that sounds like a a load of complexity that, you know, you've you've actually had their shoulder the load of. We just now get to learn from. Yeah. so that's that's that's interesting. I don't feel like I started my bloom 2 years ago. I feel like I started it 13 years ago when psychedelics first changed my life. And they've been a big, huge part of my life for the last 13 years as I built 2 other, call it, world positive companies, in, local politics and and then financial technology. when I came to starting Mindbloom, step 1 was I became a ketamine therapy patient myself, arrived on my doorstep, had the moment when I did it and saw that it was just as transformational as a lot of other psychedelic lessons that I've done, that here's this incredible medication that is prescribable and deliverable via telemedicine in the the male that most people don't know about and it's super expensive and that what you do before during and after the experience dramatically affects the quality of the experience. There's an opportunity to build not just like a commodity product where we just ship it cheap, but an experiential product where we build the world's greatest second half therapy experiences at scale. so there, I have the idea, but to your question, like, now what? It's just like, you know, just just, you know, me leaving my last company and I cofounded and, you know, having a laptop and, and a co working, membership. And what do I do? Unfortunately, I was able to, you know, quickly raise money from, previous investors, my companies, friends and other people I knew who were really passionate about this. that included, founders fund as well. but once I had the capital, which, you know, has, is a third time founders sort of the easy part The hard part was, building the legal and clinical team and framework to ensure that, like, we could do this and we could do this safely. This is serious stuff. so step 1 was going out and, having tried to do my own research a lot of conversations with some of the top health care lawyers, and building a legal and regulatory framework around how we could do this. that took about 3 to 6 months, in tandem, recruiting a medical director. so This was literally the hardest thing I've ever done in my entire entrepreneurial career is going out and finding a partner who is a leading psychiatrist and psychedelic research, doctor, Doctor Casey Palios, who's a principal investigator on the MDMA clinical trials and is probably one of the top 10 or 20, researchers in all of psychedelic medicine. it's an absolute pioneer who did, like, the landmark sel assignment for cancer anxiety study. a big part of the, ketamine for depression study at NYU, which was landmark and, has a pioneer doing ketamine therapy in his own private practice. once I met him and so we got together and saw that we had in line vision, it was bringing on ahead of clinical operations to work with, our medical director and with a clinical advisory board of other top psychiatrists and researchers that we built, to build the clinical practice guidelines and safety protocols, stand up a pilot facility in New York to sort of test a hybrid in person remote treatment model, And all that took over a year in order just to get our first patient in the door, in a way that where we could start seeing, okay, we know that this is safe, there are no MVPs when it comes to providing, medical care, much less psychedelic medical care. Like, everything clinically has to be completely, you know, buttoned up end to end. and that was sort of the the genesis of it. Other things that I did, I think, are are pretty unique. my, my wife, my partner, crime alley, she part time built our early, software platform. she was director of engineering at a $1,000,000,000 company where she was a founding engineer at, and she ended up coming aboard full time as our head of engineering. manages about 25 engineers now. my head of clinical operations I mentioned was actually one of my best friends. he was the best man of my wedding. a top health care consultant, who was helping me recruit through his network and realize that, you know, he's just as passionate about psychedelic medicine mental health care as I am. and came aboard to, to build this with me. so those are some of the, sort of early pieces that we got in place in order to begin building this platform that, you know, would bring on what's now, I think, over a 100 psychiatrists and psychiatric clinicians and psychedelic coaches and guides to, you know, treat thousands and thousands of people through our platform.
Aaron Watson [00:19:28]:
Epic. there there's so much to unpack there. I think you know, my my just immediate takeaway is it, you know, that that they say very often rightfully so that success compounds. So having the previous exits, like, we didn't really spend much time on raising money, like you said, because if you've delivered a a a w or 2 to past investors, not a guarantee, but the likelihood that they'll, you know, roll the dice again with you is relatively high. And then just, you know, cycling through the list of characters that you brought in, you know, the networks that you build from building companies in the past, obviously, in having a dynamite wife is another thing. A dynamite partner is another thing that, helps with that. I I I can speak to that from experience, but, the the thing that I wanna hang on is the fact that you said, that, recruiting, Doctor Palos was the hardest thing that you've ever done in your entrepreneurial experiences. So this is 3 startups. This is not, like, some throwaway phrase here. can you sorry. Go ahead. Can can you just take us take us deeper into that? Cause that's something that most of us have never done, and, we'd love to learn just, you know, what goes into it, how you even identify that person, let alone, convince them to join you. Yeah. So, yeah, can you imagine going out and having conversations with dozens
Dylan Benyon [00:20:43]:
of, you know, psychiatrists in their 40 the sixties, seventies as, like, a tech entrepreneur and telling them, like, you want to build a platform to dramatically increase the amount of people who are able to access ketamine therapy ideally eventually through the mail completely in order to dramatically reduce costs there are some very funky conversations.
Aaron Watson [00:21:05]:
I'm sure you got some epic news too.
Dylan Benyon [00:21:09]:
You know, this is actually interesting is early on, I thought that what we were doing or what I wanted to do or what I wanted to partner with someone to figure out how to do together was going to sound a lot stranger than it is. when you get into psychiatry, you get into it to help people. And then the psychiatrist, as I said earlier, like, given, like, a hammer and chisel and told to go do surgery, like brain surgery, and they're frustrated as hell. And so they're looking at the clinical research around psychedelics, and they're salivating, even if they don't talk about it as publicly, like, here is this promise and this hope of, medication or suite of treatments and a whole new paradigm for how to treat people with mental health and well-being issues that could be literally 10 or 100 times more effective. that's in dream come true. so people are, I think, are actually a lot more receptive than I anticipated. the challenge was so many people I talked to, if they were using ketamine therapy, maybe they only treat, like, 13 clients with it. So it was just still so early and so so new. what I did was I, built a scraper, scraped, a ton of different psychiatrists and psychologists directories and websites and dumped all that into a database, use an outbound sales software to sort of, like, mass blast a ton of people to try to set up conversations. the I had a bunch of conversations with people, and the, the person I partner with, Doctor Casey Palios, who's a pioneer in the space that I mentioned, I'd actually never Didn't reach out to him. I reached out to somebody else who just replied, no. And I responded. Do you know anybody who might be interested? She gave me 2 names. and the other one person responded like hell no. And then, Casey, our eventual medical director, and he's now our science director leading our clinical research efforts, respond to yes. And we started chatting, and I was chatting with a bunch of people at the time and realized that we had a a really, sort of United vision about how it was still sort of day 1 of figuring out how to help people get the most out of treatment and that there were gonna be businesses and people like me coming into the space. And, the best thing to do would be for people like him who had built their life's work around this to partner with businesses to figure out how to as safely and responsibly get these medications and treatments out into the world to the people who could benefit them to reduce human suffering. And we had sort of a long courtship of, seeing if there was a lot of, you know, fit here in terms of philosophy and approach before we decide to to partner up and and to put this put his work in the world out into the world, you know, on a bigger scale.
Aaron Watson [00:23:50]:
Right on. So, at this stage of the game, can you just talk in general about, like, how how long into this thing did, you know, the first revenue even come through the door? Like, what is what is and and and kind of further down line, you talked about taking this ketamine I'm I'm trying to retain these numbers correctly down from, like, 600 to $200 for someone to do this. It sounds like that's not necessarily covered by insurance in most cases. So can you just kinda give us some of the blocking tackling x's and o's of the actual, dollars being exchanged?
Dylan Benyon [00:24:24]:
Yeah. So I started, working on the company in earnest in probably, like, late 2018, mostly just like personal research. took in our first cash in, like, late 2018 or late 2019. we build spend that year building out the clinical protocols and start seeing the first clients in, they wanna say, September of 2019. we did sort of like a private launch. So I don't think we launched our website until, like, January of 2020 even, and we didn't do any marketing or any sort of you know, PR, press or outreach until, I think, March of 2020 after we had seen about a few 100 clients through the the platform and had seen that they all had these incredible clinical outcomes and a 100% safety record, right about that time COVID happened, And given that we had done, you know, over 1000 sessions, had already become one of the, you know, emerging larger, like, providers of ketamine therapy. private leaving without, like, advertising or anything, decided that we would accelerate and have the opportunity to accelerate our fully virtual timeline a year or 2. And so at that point, it, you know, really started growing quickly. we raised, you know, meaningful round of series a funding in, like, I'll say, August of 2019, and have since then just been growing, you know, since become by far the largest provider of psychedelic therapy in the world, you know, have raised over 50,000,000 in funding from, you know, top VCs, and have grown the team to over a 150 and are now massively scaling out our platform to bring ketamine and other psychedelic therapies to every single person and starting the US who needs them, for, you know, every single indication that psychedelics could help people for.
Aaron Watson [00:26:16]:
And in terms of revenue, is this being paid out of pocket? Is there, like, a commission when, Academy prescriptions filled? Like, what's what's happening there?
Dylan Benyon [00:26:25]:
Mhmm. Yeah. So it's a succession treatment program, costs, a little less than $200 a session, that succession treatment, And then subsequent programs are a little less than that, like a $120 a session. it's all cash Bay, although some of our clients do get reimbursed out of network, through their insurance companies. mental health care is, like, notoriously hard to get reimbursed for for psychiatrists and, and doctors, something that we're trying to change. And we have a sort of long term road map, and we're already in conversations with payers to try to bundle our platform and program or our treatment plans into something that could be reimbursed in a meaningful rate for clients. And I insist we're gonna continue to bring the cost down as we continue to get scale and to get more efficient. but, like, when you look at the cost, it's cheaper than talk therapy already. Like, a year of in network talk therapy is, like, $5000, right, if you're even if you're doing it with insurance being covered. and if you're talking about therapists out of network, that's like a $150 to $400 a session just for a 45 to an hour minute long. you know, chat with a talk therapist. so I think we've already dramatically reduced the cost. They made it affordable. to most Americans, but the name of the game is obviously to continue increasing access to this by making it more approachable for people and destigmatizing it and getting people to see that this is a really legitimate, clinically effective, proven treatment, not just some, you know, alternative treatment bring the cost down and, you know, making it accessible by continuing to open up as many states as we can. We'll be in, like, 42 states next year. to reach as many Americans as possible.
Aaron Watson [00:28:04]:
So I you said 15 states earlier. You said 42 by next year. Is that legislation getting through? Is that licensing? What's what's happening there to even you know, because to me, that seems like the obvious kind of 2 lovers of uncapping growth for you guys is if in some way, shape, or form this was more covered by, insurers, and then it was just able to be accessed in more markets.
Dylan Benyon [00:28:27]:
Yeah. So that's one lever. It is just licensing of clinicians. It takes a while to build out medical practices, essentially. every single state. So it's something that we've been working on for, you know, call it 18 months now expanding nationwide. so we'll be in, like, 3rd, like, think 25 or 30 states by the end of this year and then 42 early next. and another another lever too is just building out treatment protocols and programs for different indications for people. So we're helping people with anxiety and depression now. but there's some great clinical research around ketamine and other psychedelic therapies efficacy for things like, OCD, PTSD, eating disorder, social anxiety, sorter, apples therapy, potentially even like, you know, substance use disorder, alcohol use disorder, nicotine addiction, weight loss. so we're gonna be continuing to expand the platform too so that we can help, you know, as many people with the specific things that are affecting their mental health and well-being using psychedelic therapy and ketamine therapy, which would be another way to increase access.
Aaron Watson [00:29:33]:
Right on. So the mission is relatively legible. Right? We've got a mental health crisis you know, I'm I'm I'm regurgitating your lines again, but, you know, it's it's one of the most kind of pervasive widespread, you know, health challenges that that people are facing out there. and I just, you know, I guess as we end points wrapping up, you just put a little bit more color on the salience of this mission, and kind of why this is because, you know, I I I sit we say that in one regard and, you know, I've lost someone to, suicide and, you know, there there's There's other instances where people can, like, point to something directly at home that they've had to face. but there's also a degree to which it's not as in your face as other epidemics that are visually apparent to people. so can you maybe just, you know, paint a little bit more color on the intensity of of this kind of problem that is being faced from your from your point of view. Well, I think you just hit on it. I have not met a single person
Dylan Benyon [00:30:40]:
as a mental health care CEO now who does not have a 1 degree separation from a extremely acute and serious mental health care issue, either themselves are a close friend or family member. suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for people under 35, and it's the 4th leading cause of death for people, 35 to 55. depression is the number one cause of disability worldwide. and like you, I definitely seen that firsthand. Like, my family is riddled with mental health care issues. a lot of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder in my family. My mother, was schizophrenic, an addict grabbing a really turbulent home. She needed homeless for 15 years before dying of a drug overdose. and through those experiences, what I saw is through my own psychedelic experiences that have helped me never have to have a mental health care shoe, and have made me a better person for myself and others. I've seen that mental health care issues don't just affect the individual, which is super tragic, but it affects their friends, their family, their community, And it affects the human capital that they have to go on and do work in the world and contribute. my mother was not able to contribute anything despite being a really intelligent woman. She couldn't even take care of herself, and we couldn't even take care of her as a society. and that is like an utter waste. so Our big mission in mind bloom is to transform lives, to transform the world, to help people become better people for themselves, but better people for the world. and when you look at anecdotes of people who talk about their psychedelic experiences and call it, you know, abs absolute life changing like it has been for me, or if you look at the clinical research around how much more efficacious, you know, these medications and, and treatments are than everything else out there, It just becomes very obvious and clear that one of the biggest things that we can do to create a better world, to create better people and to reduce suffering overall is to get these medications into the hands of people who need them as quickly as possible in a really safe, responsible way. and continue to learn and figure out how to help people get the most out of them because it's still day 1. Like, we've discovered how to split the atom but we haven't yet figured out how to create a nuclear power reactor when it comes to psychedelics. and that's, you know, I think a lot of the challenge and a lot of the excitement around the space is how we're gonna actually apply these to help people.
Aaron Watson [00:32:58]:
Yeah. I I what I was just thinking about is, you know, most of the healthiest people I know became and I'm I'm talking mostly physically just to for the the sake of this example, took, like, a 110 percent responsibility, experimenting with themselves, doing their own research, and finding the kind of formula for their own health. So I have a very good friend, who I I feel like I referenced now almost like every other episode, but, you know, he has got, like, the most flawless skin physique, everything the whole way down and and kind of, you know, biocount seems very, mentally grounded as well. But, you know, he is someone that, you know, has the degree in nutrition reads the academic literature and all the journals and and, you know, digs and digs and digs for his own kind of solution in this regard. And I I know that part of the platform you hear is, you know, interfacing with those professionals that can either, you know, legally prescribe something or not, but you know, if we we evaluate your story and your own kind of experimentation with this stuff 12 or 13 years ago, there is a degree to which I have to imagine you were seeing some of these, you know, mental health pop, you know, issues flare up in your family and trying to find your kind of path or gateway to avoiding that fate and finding a better outcome for yourself. and and that's really, you know, the kind of story here, at at least from my side, Everyone needs help. Everyone needs a community, but your ability to, you know, go hunt for what it is that you need is really the thing that kind of unlocks everything.
Dylan Benyon [00:34:25]:
I couldn't agree more. Like, it starts with taking a 100% responsibility. And it's actually this awesome movement where seeing in health care overall, which is a move away from old medicine that's really reactive patriarchal, like, wait till you're sick and then we'll treat it. Go, listen to a doctor and just do whatever they say, which could be good, but autogenics or you know, sort of medical errors, the number 3 cause of death in the US. So it's really hard for a doctor to get a snapshot of your health and then, you know, tell you what to do without you being an active participant. And now we're shifting to new medicine, which is more proactive. it's about people taking responsibility of their own health, doing their own research, trying their own things, and creating a, you know, more of a focus on holistic health versus waiting until you get, you know, really sick. and I think the same is starting to happen with mental health care where people are looking at talk therapy, like, oh, you don't just go to talk therapy when you're, you know, disturbed, you go to become a healthier version of yourself. and psychedelics are gonna be a massive part of that wave to new medicine and mental health care because they can help people achieve these, you know, significantly better states of mental health and well-being, you know, before they need to get on antidepressants necessarily.
Aaron Watson [00:35:40]:
Beautiful. Well, I dig the mission, man. I'm excited to see you guys continue to, trail blaze and and, you know, set more flags in the ground and and avenues by which to help people. I wanna aim for dropping up, ask our standard last questions. Before I do that, is there anything else you are hoping share today that I just did did not give you the chance to?
Dylan Benyon [00:36:02]:
The only thing I would share is, Mindbloom is growing really quickly. we are a really mission obsessed organization that's building a really unique culture of consciousness actually started the company as a remote first asynchronous company a year before COVID. and we, I think do a lot of things that are very magnetic in terms of culture. They, attract some to repel most, but we're hiring, you know, across product engineering, design, marketing, or hiring psychiatric clinicians, psychedelic guides. so if anybody listening has a really deep sincere passion for psychiatric therapy in the future mental health and well-being, we would absolutely love to hear from you.
Aaron Watson [00:36:45]:
Right on. if they wanna do that or just kind of follow along with Mindbloom, generally, what digital coordinates can we provide for people? Yeah. you can find email@example.com.
Dylan Benyon [00:36:56]:
we also have a a Twitter account and an Instagram account, my Mindbloom, and we have a a careers page. But even if you see a role. If if you have a role, if you don't see in the careers page, we have a, you know, a section for that. We'd still like to hear from you.
Aaron Watson [00:37:11]:
Dope. how hard was Mindbloom of a domain name to snag?
Dylan Benyon [00:37:17]:
Oh, well, you see the namesake for Mindbloom behind me a couple of pieces here. Android Jones psychedelic art. well, I was we're looking to communicate with Mindbloom was, wisdom, clarity and growth. I did a whole mind map exercise. I got mine bloom.com for the low low price of $37,000, with the, the domain brokers that I previously used to secure mighty.com at my last company.
Aaron Watson [00:37:48]:
so -- I'm sure that one was a little bit more. A lot more. dotcom is good, but it's only valuable to me. my dotcom is a premium domain name. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. beautiful. We're gonna link all of that in the show notes for people to check it out. And, they can find that at going deepgram.com/
Aaron Watson [00:38:06]:
podcast or in the app where you're probably listening to this right now.
Aaron Watson [00:38:09]:
But Dylan, before I let you go, I'd like to give you the mic one final time to issue an actionable personal challenge to the audience.
Dylan Benyon [00:38:19]:
I'm gonna, allude to what you said earlier about people who take a 110% responsibility over their health and using that as, like, the most important behavior for people's health. I actually talk about that all the time that's designed to take control over your health, including your own mental health and well-being, is, like, the first and most important behavior or decision that you can make. there's so many things you can do and try. Obviously, psychedelic medicine has been a massive part of my life, and, you know, myboom.com is a vehicle for that. but I think one of the other things that's been most meaningful to me if you told me 10 years ago, this would be what the most one of the most important parts of your mental health and well-being practice. I would tell you your nuts, is reading books and literature about mental health and well-being. and some of that could be like enlightenment literature, or sort of like eastern philosophy or, you know, things like that or stoicism, or even like, like, positive psychology So I would I would challenge your audience to, to pick up a book on mental health and well-being. it could be a book like awareness by Anthony Dimelo or the surrender experiment, by Michael Singer or letters from a Stowick by Seneca, Tim Ferris produced an incredible audio book on it, and then I highly recommend, or you can look into books on positive psychology specifically. and then the science of happiness, and start reading about mental health and well-being. that might have been the first and most important behavior reading about mental health and well-being that got me started on my path to realizing this was something I wanted to focus on and wasn't just gonna happen on itself.
Aaron Watson [00:39:57]:
Right on. And that's the same type of thing where you kind of touch on a couple different, like, schools of thought or approaches to something like that. And it's, you know, it it's the responsibility in conjunction with experimentation. Like, maybe stocism just ain't your bag. You you read it. You chew on it. Like, this just isn't for me. I'm gonna find a different approach that kind of mixes with my, you know, brain and DNA and all that stuff the right way. So I think that's a really good kind of pairing of the 2. Dylan, thanks so much for coming on the podcast today. I really enjoyed talking with you. Thanks, Aaron. This was a blast. Appreciate having me on. We just went deep with Dylan Bynan, who went out there has a fantastic sick day.
Aaron Watson [00:40:36]:
Hey. Thanks for watching to the end of my interview with Dylan. If you enjoyed learning about the building blocks of one of these fast growing businesses, then you would also like our recent interview with Joe Percoco. He talks all about the building blocks of a FinTech startup.