Disability Pride as ADA turns 25
Who is “The Strength Coach” and what is he about? The book I’m currently reading has forced me to look closely at my brand. I’m a motivational speaker, but what makes me different? What makes me stand out from other speakers? After an extensive process, I have realized that I left out a major part of my identity as I marketed “The Strength Coach.” I left out my disability.
How could I forget? I’ve had muscular dystrophy my whole life. I hosted a syndicated radio show on disability for 14 years! 10 years ago, I decided to branch out and become a mainstream motivational speaker. But the mistake I made was that I left behind the source of my strength: My disability.
I’m bringing that back! Nothing changes about the essence of what I do. I teach people how to turn weaknesses into strengths for increased productivity and profits, leaving them feeling “full-strength swag!” I just feel like celebrating my disability pride right now, which is fueled by the growing excitement over the 25 year anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, coming up in July!
So the podcast, Timeout with the Strength Coach, will present the challenges I face and the way I maneuver them, offering analogies for how anyone can use difficulty for personal gain. My speeches will include a little more disability pride, using examples of people with disabilities who showed me the way. And in July, filmmaker Joanne Caputo and I will be offering a free screening of the award-winning PBS documentary film, On A Roll: Family, Disability and the American Dream. This year is the 10th anniversary of the making of one of the most impactful documentaries about disability ever made.
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