Dudley Thurmond is an award-winning speaker, master motivator and mindset development coach, who’s known as “Dr. Bounce Back”. He’s faced several life threatening situations, and his personal story will change your life.
Dudley’s journey started in a small town outside of Cincinnati, Ohio. This is where he was initially exposed to poverty. He grew up with his mother, older brother and older sister. As his mother was often on the street, his sister took care of him. Football was Dudley’s outlet and became a big part of his life at a young age. He was a curious and outgoing kid, and negative peer pressure found him going into the 6th grade.
“I was already a hustler at a young age”
He is certain he could have played Division I college football, but he didn’t have the grades as she said he didn’t respect the classroom growing up.
He did get an opportunity to attend a Division II college to play football, and worked hard in summer school to achieve the necessary grades to be part of the program.
“It was one of the happiest days of my life. I finally accomplished something, I was heading in the right direction.”
Dudley went out to celebrate and got into a fight outside of a nightclub, getting stabbed with a sword and almost losing his life in the process.
“I feel like I laid on my death bed that night, but my life was spared for a reason; don’t take it lightly that you woke up this morning.”
During recovery from this incident, he couldn’t eat food and lost so much weight that people who knew him no longer recognized him.
Eventually, he was able to walk and started jogging and lifting weights. He ended up becoming bigger, stronger and faster than he had ever been in his life. He found himself back on the streets, feeling like he had something to prove.
“I was that tough guy and no one would have expected that to happen to me”
He found himself in front of a judge, with his children and family in court, and was found guilt of a crime. Dudley was facing 17 years in jail.
“That’s when reality hit me in the face. That was rock bottom.”
He says up to that point, he had been running from his purpose his whole life.
“Everyone has control over their life; if they are willing to make some changes in their life, then they’re going places.”
Dudley knew he was on a mission to get whatever positive things he could get from prison, and get out. He went there with a plan, and goals. He was sent to a program called “Choices”, with 8 other prisoners, and began public speaking. When he spoke at an engagement and the audience cried, he believed he found his calling.
“At that point I knew that there was a job for me to do”
He was sent back to appear before the same judge, and only a few months after going to prison, she released him.
“I’ve been impacting lives ever since”
Resilience has played a key factor in his life. If he didn’t have the trait, Dudley says that he would probably given up a life a long time ago.
“Resilience is in every human being, but it’s up to you to access it”
“At the end of the day, you have to know that it’s possible for you to overcome whatever it is you’re going through”
He says that you can’t let your emotions (fear, anger, sadness, etc.) spiral out of control.
“We’re emotional creatures, and we need to pay close attention to our emotions. Access that resilience trait and continue to fight.”
Dudley is releasing a new book soon, with details on his website (see “INTERVIEW LINKS”).