Tuesday, June 18th, 2024

Meet Dan Keeley: An inspirational speaker with a valuable message to share

Growth from adversity is something known very well to Dan Keeley. An inspiring and humble individual with a turbulent yet incredibly uplifting story to tell. Dan’s message is certainly one to be heard. Soon to be shared at the upcoming TEDx event in Sevenoaks this September at the Stag theatre, Dan will be accompanied by a varied selection of other influential speakers all discussing human-centred, personal stories and their one bid idea worth sharing. In a warm, positive and supportive environment, the ambience will mirror the events’ theme of ‘coming together’.

When first approached by the organiser of Sevenoaks’ TEDx event, Ricky Spiers, Dan was asked to share his story on The Curious Cat’s podcast, Ricky’s personal-development podcast co-hosted by Chris Wharton. From here, it was clear to Ricky that Dan’s story was one worth sharing on the global TEDx platform. Discussing his ideas surrounding ‘The Power of Speaking Up When We’re Suffering’, Dan’s TEDx speech will draw on how vulnerability and adversity are powerful tools to find the meaning, courage and strength to move forward. Hoping to ‘throw out a few life rafts’, Dan is no stranger to talking to large audiences about how his past suffering was the silver lining to him finding the answers to embrace his future. As a professional speaker and mental health activist, Dan frequently speaks about his own vulnerabilities at intimate seminars in order to facilitate often tricky conversations, and provide a safe space for others to speak up about their struggles in order to find their own answers. By no means though does Dan profess to be a counsellor or a therapist, instead he prefers his role as a preventative and proactive speaker.

With the aim of bringing people together to talk about what really matters most in life, an exploration of topics based around courage, adversity, vulnerability, mindset and endurance are the ‘real’ conversations that Dan delves into. Like many who have battled with mental health, Dan never found it easy to speak up about his past traumas and tribulations. However, after finding himself trapped in the depths of depression and anxiety back in 2012, he acknowledged what he was experiencing was an extreme form of ‘burn out’. Soon seeking professional help which extended over 3 years, Dan spent much time reflecting and digesting before mustering the courage to open up and talk about his feelings. By dropping his armour and accepting feedback, Dan was able to embark on his journey of recovery in order to live contently again. He describes how he then ‘felt lighter’, and that the ‘shame had been lifted’ through the simple act of speaking up. No longer one to keep his feelings in the dark, a strong support network has now compelled him to honour the meaning found in his own suffering by sharing his story to multiple audiences in order to release other’s from their turmoil. No better way can sum up Dan’s mission than his favourite quote by Frankl: ‘suffering ceases to be suffering at the moment it finds meaning’.

Finding meaning consequently inspired Dan to take on his ‘Rome to Home’ adventure-challenge back in 2017, which entailed running over 1250-miles (solo & self-supported) from the Colosseum to The London Eye over the course of 65 days. Not only did this venture raise a staggering £17,000 for charity, but Dan’s jubilation on completing the run, with over 160 supporters waiting at finish line, was also a poignant symbol and celebration of his recovery. It was this that truly opened up the flood gates and provided the platform for Dan’s service in helping others to heal through empowering them to speak up. With an emphasis on living intentionally and keeping things in balance between our health, relationships, passions, growth, and being in service to others, coupled with Dan’s professional commitment to the mental-health landscape, Dan’s regular hosting of safe spaces with audiences and individuals offers anyone needing a helping hand the chance to come together, to talk about the things which really matter most and to explore the new and beautiful destinations which can await all of us when we find the courage andsupport each other to speak up when we’re struggling.

A gentle soul with an admirable empathetic demeanour, Dan is most certainly an individual everyone should embrace the chance to meet and absorb his wise words of wisdom.

To purchase your ticket for the TEDx event on September 18th, visit: https://stagsevenoaks.co.uk/film/tedxsevenoaks/ ,or to connect with Dan, check out his website: dankeeley.co or get in touch on social media @IamDanKeeley.

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