FP036: How to Find Mentors and Overcome Adversity with Sean Stephenson
Bleeding brain. Fractured skull. Concussion.
These were the effects. The event was just as sudden. One Thursday in late July, Sean Stephenson took his dog for a stroll. Then he fell — ripped from his wheelchair, Stephenson crashed onto the concrete ground, a traumatic impact that landed him in the hospital and left him for some time without short-term memory.
But he had dodged death, and not for the first time. When Stephenson was born, he was diagnosed with osteogenesis imperfecta, an uncommon disease that brings stunted growth and fragile bones. Doctors predicted he would quickly perish.
Instead, he lived, growing up to become a motivational speaker and businessman. After traveling for years, speaking to audiences far and wide, Stephenson has cut down on the airplane flights and shifted to holding seminars in one location in Arizona. His success hasn’t been easy, but he says that only a fraction of his challenges stem from disability. The rest have to do with the sorts of things most people struggle with in various ways: friends and money and marriage.
Stephenson’s story shows that entrepreneurship — no, life itself — is laced with challenges. Sometimes, you’re buffeted by events that you can’t control. He recommends that in those instances, when you really can’t control the outcome, you stop trying to. If you can change your circumstances, do so, but if you can’t, don’t stress for no reason.
“I know that if I’m willing to let go of control, it’s going to be a lot easier process than trying to fight for the control with some invisible force out there,” he says. “Call it God, call it universe, call it law of attraction, call it science, call it whatever makes you comfortable, but there are powers that play outside of us that are much bigger than us.”
As he recovered from his July accident, Stephenson felt out of his depth, so he did what made sense to him: he sat back and had to laugh, waiting to see where it would all go.
As much sense as relinquishing control sometimes makes, it’s not an everyday play. In most areas, Stephenson doesn’t passively await his fate. He shapes it, because there’s a flipside to the challenges he has no control over: the ones he does.
“The start of my career is not sexy. It really started with discrimination,” he says. At age 17, Stephenson applied to a number of jobs, all of which he believes rejected him because of his disability.
In this interview you will learn:
How to find mentors
Key factors and insights on what it takes to become a successful entrepreneur
Marketing 101 the Sean way!
How Sean has overcome his challenges in life and business as an entrepreneur
& much more!