Ex-convict turned doctor B J Davis gives an inspiring TED talk at Sacramento about his journey from being a drug addict to a confident new man. Years of drug abuse had made Davis make bad choices and decisions, but his second time in prison and his mother’s close brush with death planted a “seed of change” in him, and he decided enough was enough.
Davis relays the importance of having self confidence. Through his experience, he tells the audience how once other people start believing in you, you start believing in yourself, too. When he received the news of his mother’s heart attack, he realised he did not wish to be this irresponsible person anymore, and instead wanted to be a man his mother would be proud of. When he went to college, he encountered two professors who changed his life, by showing him that he was worthy, and that they believed in him. These people gave him the initial push that he needed, and motivated him to be relieved of those shackles of self doubt.
He recounts: “In a moment, I realised, the only person left to believe in me, the only person that needed to believe in me, was me… For the first time since I had left prison, I felt free.”
“I have learnt the hard way how paralyzing self-doubt can be. It contributes to people choosing misery over joy, emptiness over fulfillment, and imprisonment over freedom — and unnecessarily so,” he shares. ‘Miracles’ are often wrongly attributed to the success of people with histories of drug use or related activities. Their hard work and perseverance are overlooked and they are called ‘lucky’. “You don’t have to wait for a miracle. You can create your own.”
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