Nick Wilson is a Speaker, Presenter and Content Creator, aka Disabled Adventurer, an Ambassador for Purple Tuesday, and the Disability Expo, who Champions suicide survivors and abilities over disabilities, through his talks and adventures. He openly, and very frankly, shares his lived experiences with mental illness, physical disability and surviving a suicide attempt to; inform society, encourage change, and inspire and empower others, with authenticity and a message of hope.
He is also an Army Veteran with an impactful story to tell. After 14 years of service, Nick left the military, with a spinal injury and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder PTSD, as a result of multiple deployments across the globe such as, Northern Ireland, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan. Through his battle with both physical and mental disabilities, surviving attempted suicide and managing suicidal ideation, Nick continually demonstrates resilience and the ability to overcome adversity, whilst forging a new career as a successful public speaker, budding presenter, video producer and an adventurer always looking for his next challenge.
Through finding ways to better manage his health conditions and environment, Nick prevents his disabilities from dictating his life or fulfilling his purpose of selflessly helping others. This is clear to see by his commitment to supporting the local community and wider society, with the many achievements he’s obtained being recognised, locally and nationally, winning him an award at the prestigious “English Veterans Awards” and being named “Male Role Model of the Year” ‘21 and “Changemaker” of the Year ‘22.
In a bid to understand the workings of the mind, Nick studied Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Mental Health First Aid and Neuro-Linguistics Programming, becoming a trainer and practitioner in all three. Armed with his lived experiences, professional skills in mental health and life lessons learned, Nick founded Talk Mental Health CIC, a social enterprise to; champion men’s mental health and advocating for the sharing of our lived experiences. From launching in May 2020, TMH has directly helped over 250 guys locally and hundreds of thousands, nationally and globally, through the videos Nick creates for social media. As someone who promotes hope through his messaging and embracing abilities over disabilities, Nick has completed countless charity fundraising work throughout his career raising over £125,000 for charities, through organising events such as; 1000-mile cycle for D-Day commemorations and the first Basra half marathon. Nick also ran successful mental health campaigns during 2018/19, creating hashtags #Realmentalk and #Timetolisten reaching over 250,000 around the world.
Through his challenges Nick has:
- Ascended Mount Snowden in a powered wheelchair, creating the first ever VR experience of doing so from a wheelchair user perspective
- Became the first disabled person to complete 96km of the Ridgeway National Trail in a wheelchair
- Completed a 385mile cycle on his specialised recumbent trike, from Margate to Lands End, Spent 10 days travelling Route66 with, Bike Tours for the Wounded, on a Harley Goldwing.
During these he’s had to overcome; heat exhaustion, debilitating chronic pain, mental struggles, failure, and homelessness, whilst navigating Covid and a severe lack of funding, however, regardless of this he has still found ways to
Nick runs countless presentations that train both the public and private sectors on the importance of mental health, disability and suicide awareness, accessibility, and inclusion, through sharing his own journey of overcoming adversity, adjusting to new challenges, recovery and beginning to learn how to best live his life once more.
He has gained experience and a respected reputation, through his previously delivering to; businesses large and small, global and regional, universities, networking events and small local community functions. The feedback he receives, always includes words such as, Authentic, Inspirational, Thought Provoking, Empowering, Life Changing and Educational/Informative; demonstrating that Nick’s talks are suitable for a wide range of demographic groups and can always be made relatable to the specific audience.
From surviving suicide attempts, learning to manage with Complex PTSD, Depression, Suicidal thoughts, and physical disabilities, to his personal growth, development, and journey of recovery. Nick can adapt these lived experiences to speak on a multitude of topics, more specifically connected to Suicide, Mental Health, Change, EDI, Disability and
Post Traumatic Growth, ensuring to meet all your specific requirements.
Mental Health and Disability – Providing a general overview of mental health and disability, the impact they have on the individual, the workplace and how others can best support someone with mental ill health and/or a disability, plus the importance of us as individuals, accepting responsibility for and taking ownership of, our own wellbeing and how we manage it.
Disability in the Workplace – Helping organisations to benefit from embracing inclusion, what this looks like and how to identify the strengths and abilities of someone who has a disability. Talking specifically about how to make the necessary adjustments in your organisation, ensuring you implement any specific training correctly, to benefit from maximum effectiveness, and how to best communicate and support those with mental ill health and a disability.
Suicide Awareness and Prevention – Suicide remains to be one of the most challenging and taboo topics in the workplace and wider society, where arguably the associated stigma still results in the loss of life. Each death is one too many and can impact 135 people on average and attempted suicide numbers are estimated by the NHS to be 140,000 and so much work remains to be done. Nick has unique knowledge which any organisation would benefit from, with lived experience of attempted suicide and battling with suicidal thoughts, in addition to experience of helping others, whilst navigating the system.
Transition & Change – Following a successful 14-year career in the military, Nick faced a traumatic decade long journey of transition, within a society which had become alien to him compared to the military. Then on becoming “newly disabled”, has once again had to adapt to life being in a wheelchair and the restrictions which come with this. However,
he has become a successful and integral part of society, a well-known and respected member of his local community and entrepreneur.
My Journey – Nick has had a tumultuous life to date, from living on the streets at the age of 16, starting his first business at the age of 17 and joining the Army, to building two successful businesses on leaving the military, launching a men’s support group and forging a new career as a speaker and presenter.
Nick’s ‘cheeky chappy’ persona reflects a friendly, humble guy whose speaking style is authentic, open and powerful. His wealth of personal, practical, and professional experiences over 25 years guarantees a direct impact on those he speaks to, inspiring and empowering everyone he meets.
Nick’s ‘cheeky chappy’ persona reflects a friendly, humble guy whose speaking style is authentic, open and powerful. His wealth of personal, practical and professional experiences over 25 years guarantees a direct impact on those he speaks to, inspiring and empowering everyone he meets.