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TEDx Speaker With Two Million Views - Darryll Stinson

succeed through speaking tom bailey Mar 03, 2023

Tom Bailey, founder of Succeed Through Speaking, interviews Darryll Stinson.

Darryll Stinson is a transformational speaker on a mission to impact the world by helping leaders grow their movements through personal development, storytelling, and public speaking.

As a former Division 1 athlete who lost his career due to severe back injury, Darryll, founder of Second Chance Athletes overcame multiple suicide attempts to become an international speaker, best-selling author, credential minister, award-winning philanthropist and 2xTEDx speaker — with one of his talks grossing more than 2 million views.

Darryll’s ultimate goal in life is to be known for how he loves and how he gives. When he is not working, Darryll enjoys rapping, reading, entertainment, music, sports, exploring nature, and spending time with his wife and four amazing children.

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Tom Bailey  00:07

Hello and welcome to succeed through speaking the place for experts and entrepreneurs who want high value ideas to boost business results Hello, I'm Tom Bailey and in today's speaker stories episode of against Darryll Stinson, who's an international speaker, Best Selling Author, credentialed Minister award winning philanthropist and two times TEDx speaker, as well as the founder of Second Chance athletes, to Darryll Hello, and a very warm welcome to today's episode.

Darryll Stinson  00:46

What's up? What's up? What's up, man? It's gonna be an epic episode I can already tell

Tom Bailey  00:50

it is thank you so much for being here and just out of interest for everyone listening whereabouts in the world are you right now?

Darryll Stinson  00:56

I'm in Metro ATL baby.

Tom Bailey  00:58

Fantastic. Thanks for sharing. Now, I already mentioned your two times TEDx speaker. And I happen to know that one of those talks has had over 2 million views. So that's where I wanted to start today. How does it feel knowing that you've potentially impacted the lives of at least 2 million people as well as all the other work? You've been doing?

Darryll Stinson  01:17

Surreal? Yeah, there was. I mean, I, you know, my, I would have never thought that that is how I would have impacted people. I'm gonna, you know, my journey that I was a an elite athlete. And so I thought that was how I was going to get fame and influence, athletic ability. But to do it through a place that was a huge insecurity for me, which was my voice has been on Unreal, absolutely unreal. Really interesting

Tom Bailey  01:47

that you talked about that, that huge insecurity, as some of the speakers that I talked to, we always knew they were gonna be natural born speakers. But others have had different journeys. So let's go right back to the beginning, what was your kind of earliest memory of having to stand up and speak in front of an

Darryll Stinson  02:01

audience? Man, I kind of wasn't natural growing up, you know, like, I can remember being in like, class and being very charismatic, very outspoken, until I was walking in the hallway. And I saw a group of black students in my school circle together, you know, cracking up making jokes. And I was like, being charismatic. I'm like, I'm gonna go, and I'm gonna, like, make some jokes, too. And I go over to them, I'm like, What's so funny, and one of them turned towards me and said, Your was funny, white boy. And they all laughed. And that's when I learned that I was known in our school as the black kid that quote unquote, talks and acts white. Okay, and so it created this level of insecurity in myself, because I said, Who I am authentically isn't enough to be liked or loved by other people. And so while I was kind of more of a born natural communicator and leader, I very much so learned how to become insecure and dim that light. And, you know, I feel like all of us are like that, like, I've never met a kid who wasn't vibrant and playful. But it's because of these experiences. And these rejections and these social moments where they weren't accepted for who they really were. But they started to question their identity and their voice and start to dim their light a little bit. And that was my case, they I

Tom Bailey  03:23

can really resonate with that story from myself as well, that there are specific memories I can remember as well, where my light was dimmed. So I guess, what, what did that look like? How did that play out? Then, as you came out of school, went to university early career? How did that kind of insecurities play when it came to standing up or speaking in front of audiences?

Darryll Stinson  03:42

Well, you know, I continued in the projection of being someone that I wasn't because in my mind, not that it was true, but it was something I was telling myself as truth was that it was safer to be someone else than it was to be myself. And so when I would stand up in front of room, I would be someone I'm not, you know, I wouldn't, you know, say what I'm think I'm supposed to say in front of people, you know, I would act, I'm supposed to think I'm supposed to act in front of people. And, you know, I was caging, my authentic personality, my authentic beliefs, and who I really was on the inside. And so, a lot of times, man, I would try to avoid those scenarios as much as possible. Like I tell people all the time I used to have you ever heard of icebreakers? Yeah. Like you go around the room, like what's your name and your favorite, like spirit animal or whatever. So I used to fake like, I had to go to the bathroom and leave the room so that they would skip over me and I wouldn't have to speak in front of people. Yeah. And so whenever I was forced to, I mean, I have video footage, even of some early days of me speaking. You could see me like, terrible eye contact. Looking at my feet. You can see my hand shaking. Like you probably can't see that I'm sweating profusely. But you can see the nervousness and I would mumble a lot, because I didn't want to be hurt because I had this subconscious belief that my voice didn't matter. My opinion didn't matter. If so I would mumble a lot, you couldn't really hear what I was saying, and I wouldn't speak up. And I certainly did not open up and take up my space with my body. Yeah, yeah.

Tom Bailey  05:10

Loads and loads and loads of that I resonate with. So I used to always say that, you know, I spent the first 30 years of my life becoming an expert at avoiding public speaking. I think it's very much like you and that I remember that circle of death I used to call it you know, people took it in turns going around the room waiting to hear from you. And I'd be shaking sweating going bright red before even got to me so definitely can understand that. So it sounds like you were in a pretty inauthentic place when it came to speaking and avoiding in most cases, what, what how did you go from from that to a national award winning TEDx speaker?

Darryll Stinson  05:52

I know such stark contrast, right? Well, I had an awakening a spiritual awakening, man. You know, I became suicidal because I had pretended to be myself. I pretended to be someone I wasn't for so long that I lost sight of who I really was. And I was hiding. I'm masking a lot of that with athletic success yet. So when I had a back injury that ended my opportunity to play in the NFL, I was forced to face was I, you know, the real meat that I couldn't even contextualize. And so I got depress, you know, suicide, I ended up in a psychiatric care facility. And it was there, man, I just had a spiritual awakening, I found my faith. And I started to have this hope that amendment, like, I'm here for a reason. Yeah. Like, like, and it was not sports. Like, there's still a reason for me to be on this planet. And I think deep within myself, I knew, like, intuitively, that I had sort of what I would call a calling to speak. You know, internally, I felt it and externally, I would get asked, you know, what happened to you? You know, like, share your story, man, it would be really good for people to hear from you. He should speak to your former high school like that type of thing. And so I was getting that external feedback as well and those opportunities and are shutting them all down. Like I'm not a speaker. Yeah. I can talk about 30 years avoiding it. And what happened is Ay ay ay ay ay. Embrace the process. Okay, I did it afraid. When I say I did afraid. I mean, one of my first speeches, I wrote out wrote word for word, excited into a reporter. Strong headphones up into my, you know, my jacket, left one earphone in to give the appearance that I forgot to take my headphones out, press play, and then proceeded to recite the recording. Okay, terrible. I started to repeat sentences because I talk a lot faster than I read. And it was one of the most embarrassing engagements I've done, but I did it afraid, good. I started to test the waters, you know, things that are afraid to do I started to do so if I was afraid to speak up a little bit in speeches, I started to like, speak up a little bit testy edges, see what that feels like. And I was afraid to deal with illustration. I tried to do a little illustration, right, like I did this talk called custom tailored for your purpose. And I was talking about how your purpose is only made for you. And I tried on my wife's pants that were like two sizes too big or too small for me. And you know, I was willing to push my edge and that made me more comfortable with the uncomfort

Tom Bailey  08:30

so many great messages in there. But but don't get afraid doing it uncomfortable. Embracing the journey, I think the big ones in there. And so was it was the first one then going back to your previous school. Is that where you really started this, this journey?

Darryll Stinson  08:46

Oh, man, I can't remember what like the first one was it was either it wasn't my it was probably my current school that I was at. So I was done playing football in college as a junior. And so you know, after, you know, I survived the suicide time, I still had my senior year to play out. So I think I went back and did like a, I don't know, motivational message or something for the team. It probably wasn't innovational. But that was like the first and then after that, probably churches and then youth camps and stuff 

Tom Bailey  09:12

Yeah. And from that kind of first talk back in the senior year to now. How long was how has that journey been? That you want to give away your age or anything? But

Darryll Stinson  09:22

yeah, I mean, it's been about what, 1013 years, since since then. And I'm 33 years old. And a lot of people think I'm 40 or something cuz I talk like, I'm super wise. Yeah, I just have been through a lot, man. It's been excruciatingly Beautiful. Okay, like, painful, scary. Um, you know, I'm actually getting ready to do my third TEDx talk. And it's going to be around how vulnerable speaking can change your life. Awesome. And part of the thing that I said in doing this is, you know, you have to speak to a level of vulnerability that you have hit your threshold You know, like imagine being in therapy, and they're like, Hey, tell me about your life, you're just kind of like talking about your day surface level stuff, like, you're really not gonna get to the core of where you're stuck emotionally. Yeah, it's the same and speaking and growing personally, like you have to communicate vulnerably enough. And by the way, vulnerability is not just your trauma, it's also your gifts. It's also your light. Like, I think one of the most vulnerable displays of speaking was Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Right? He didn't talk about the trauma, he said, I have a dream that was very vulnerable in front of people who could harm him. And so I have to say that because you know, vulnerability is not just you talking about your traumas, also, you talking about your light, your gift, your love your personality, like letting all of you be seen by the world. And so I would do that, and wherever I would feel stuck, or emotional spikes, or resistance within my body, when I was kind of pushed that vulnerable edge. That was the area I knew that I could grow from, okay, it was always scary, because it was out there for people to see. And I'm like, checking the comments, you know, oh, my gosh, I want to delete the videos and all that stuff. So that's what that was excruciating. But the beautiful part was what was on the other side of that vulnerability. Okay, that's what the process has been like, for me.

Tom Bailey  11:12

I think exploring the edges is powerful. Never really thought about that before. But, you know, I feel like a lot of people I speak to, there may be reading books on public speaking there may be watching videos, they're watching TED Talks. But there's only so far you can go from from, you know, developing the speaking. Did he have to test the edges? Like you say?

Darryll Stinson  11:30

Totally. Yeah, totally. Mastering mechanics will never make you a world class speaker. Yeah. Okay. You have to be in the work. Yeah. Yeah. All right. Yeah. And if you master mechanics, you can get to a level where you sound professional, and you sound poised, and you can put on a really good show. But it doesn't mean that you'll make a really big impact.

Tom Bailey  11:50

Yeah, yeah, that makes a lot of sense to me. And so I guess, yeah, you know, go out there, test the edges, but also know that it's gonna take time, you know, some of these aspiring speakers watch these world class speakers thinking I can do that, you know, next year, this time next year, that'll be me. But you know,

Darryll Stinson  12:06

will you start today? Yeah, this time next year, it will be you if you start today, you start today? Yeah, you just start and make a commitment of consistency. You know, they don't have to be every day. But consistency majority of the time, more times than not, I'm gonna like, I'm gonna do it, I'm gonna step into what I'm gonna try. And one of the things that helped me is to reframe how I viewed public speaking to me, early on, it was all about the stage, the lights the microphone. As I started to grow, I realized anytime that I'm expressing my truth, anytime where I'm sharing my beliefs, whether that's onstage, whether that's in conversation, whether it's own podcasts, whether that's with my wife, my kids, like I'm speaking, I'm expressing me. Yeah. And so if I started to see that, well, I can go with there's ease, right? Like, I don't have to go speak in front of a crowd of 500 people to prove myself, I can start with like, Hey, let me try to have an honest conversation with my spouse. Yeah. See I do there. Yeah. Because how you do anything is how you do everything. Yeah.

Tom Bailey  13:05

Yeah, love. I love all of this. You know, I could, I could talk to you all day. I guess one thing that I like to ask speakers is that transition point. So you probably did a lot of free speaking, you know, you speak in front of your school and colleges and local groups. At some point, you must have realized, you know what, I can make this into a career, I could get paid to do this. But what was that point like for you? And how did you? How did you navigate this

Darryll Stinson  13:27

moment? Yo, so I didn't have to go through that. Okay. Yeah. And it's so funny. And I don't think people do either, by the way, right? Like, I worked with speakers and like we can, you know, you get paid based upon value. Yeah, a lot of times, even that shift of when I started, so the only thing I can say that relates to that is when I started to call higher prices, right? Because so I didn't go like free, free free now I'm charging, but I went like low, low, low and now charging higher. And it's like the same kind of like internal fear you have to overcome. And I'll never forget, it was actually a coach that was helping me. And I was trying to go from what was it at the time, I think was like five to 10k speaking. And I had never been paid 10k at that point. And she was like, How much do you make speaking girl? And I was like, 5k She was like, How much do you make speaking there was like 5k said, Darryl, how much do you make speaking? And I was like, Oh 10k She said that's how easy it is. Yeah. The reason why you're not making 10k is because you haven't quoted any party.

Tom Bailey  14:29

Yeah, like that. Yeah.

Darryll Stinson  14:32

And I tell you, like it didn't happen the next conversation but within like a month or so I got 10k to speak. It was all in my head. And so you know, the early stages is that you put the price out there put a price out today you feel comfortable with that you feel this fear and get used to quoting a price you don't have to start and do free, free, free, free, free, free, free till you think you're good enough to get paid. If you can add value to the audience. You can get paid for. That's it.

Tom Bailey  14:56

Yeah, that's the main thing. You know, adding value to the audience. A lot of The early speakers might just go out and just tell their story. They might just, you know, tell some facts or try and train people on something. But But yeah, thinking about how do I create value for the audience? What can they take away from this and apply it to their lives? That's the big transformation, isn't it? Yeah, it is totally. Perfect. And I guess one last question I wanted to just ask this was really powerful is for anyone listening right now that's an aspiring speaker would love to get to where you are, but maybe you're just struggling that might be stuck? What kind of advice would you give to them? What what should they do right now to really take themselves to the next level?

Darryll Stinson  15:34

Identify why you're stuck. What is the actual fear? And do the opposite that the fear is telling you to do? So, you know, that's different for each every one of us. The other thing I would say is get a coach. Yes. Right. Some coach that you feel like can help you. You can guide you can hold you accountable, can even help you put together your story because sometimes the fear is not like an energetic like, I'm actually afraid sometimes it's just that I'm incompetent. Like I just don't know. And if I could see like that, sometimes I do the story writing sessions with people, and they'll see their story said in a way that's like, whoa, and then they get confident about it. Right. He didn't like it wasn't actually a fear. It was just like a incompetence thing. And so maybe maybe that's a route for some people to get work with a writer to help write it out. And you're like, oh, man, okay, that is good. I do have stuff to say. And then that will help you, you know, kind of overcome that, that hump to get out there.

Tom Bailey  16:30

Yeah, a lot of what you said there might be come back to fear of imposter syndrome, fear of other people's opinions, fear of being judged. All of that stuff. Yeah. Okay, perfect. Thanks for sharing that. So, final promises. Final question on Friday. If somebody wants to book you as a speaker or find out more about you, where should they go to do that?

Darryll Stinson  16:49

Go to my website, or my social. So my website, Darrell, or my socials at students and speaks on every platform.

Tom Bailey  16:55

Amazing. And what I'll do now is I'll post a link to all of those in the show notes so people can just click on them and find out more. Of course, yeah, love it. Awesome. Well, thank you so much for coming along today, sharing your story and of course, providing such great value for our audience.

Darryll Stinson  17:09

Appreciate it. Thank you.