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Damon West

If We Lose Hope, We Lose All


In this episode

Welcome to Part 2 of my amazing episode of In Search of Excellence featuring Damon West, a man with an astonishing life story. He was a former meth addict and head of an organized crime ring, sentenced to life in prison for his crimes.

Today, he is a college professor at the University of Huston, an exceptional motivational speaker, and a best-selling author. His story is one of the most incredible and fascinating stories I’ve ever heard.

In this episode, we’ll hear about his prison experience, life after prison, and the importance of never giving up and losing hope! Tune in for more!

(00:37) Prison experience

  • 6 weeks in prison
  • Sports in prison is a big deal (no mixed-race teams)
  • Basketball court (getting on all-black teams)
  • Adversity is never as bad as you think
  • You are more capable than you think you are
  • No more violence

(07:58) Mental health and suicidal thoughts

  • Prison is a very predatory environment
  • Suicidal thoughts in prison
  • Church service and a personal talk with Miss D
  • A secret to faith
  • If we lose hope, we lose all
  • Movie mention: Shawshank Redemption
  • Message to people suffering in their own mind

(19:54) After prison

  • Getting out of prison
  • Working in a law firm
  • Meeting 8 best coaches in the US (rejected by everyone but the 8th conversation!)
  • Presentation in Clinton, Alabama
  • A message from the director of football operations in Alabama
  • A call from John Gordon, the motivational speaker
  • Writing a book “Coffee Bean”

(27:50) The importance of preparation for success

  • Preparation is everything
  • You have to put in the work and take action
  • 3-5 elements one needs to be successful

(30:44) The importance of giving back

  • Extremely important
  • Helping children of incarcerated parents
  • Getting MA in criminal justice
  • Professor at the University of Huston and teaching at Prisons in America

(34:00) Fill in the blanks

  • Damon’s biggest lesson in life
  • Damon’s #1 professional goal
  • Damon’s #1 personal goal
  • Damon’s biggest regret
  • Damon’s biggest dream for the future

Sandee | Bliss: Beaches

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