360 Wellbeing Inspirational Speaking

Inspirational and Mental Health Speaking

Nick Wilson is a Veteran who served 14 years in the British Army during which time, he deployed on several Operational Tours including Northern Ireland, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan. He successfully completed varying roles and responsibilities, but mostly he was involved with the Training, Coaching and Mentoring of Recruits, regular Tri-service Military personnel and Multi-National forces.

On leaving the Army in 2012 and with the skills learned and honed whilst serving in the military, Nick started his own Chauffeur car business. The ensuing brand he created, became extremely well known and respected throughout Oxfordshire, within the local communities, amongst his peers and in the chauffeur industry, ultimately becoming a successful £1/4million turnover company by year two.

Nick was officially diagnosed by Combat Stress in early 2016, as having Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – PTSD, further compounded by a debilitating spinal injury that leaves Nick in chronic pain daily, which is tiring physically, emotionally and mentally. Regardless of this, Nick works hard to demonstrate that those with physical or mental injuries can compete with their peers.

After four years filled with ups and downs, mistakes made and lessons learned, Nick suffered a breakdown and his PTSD got to the point where he attempted suicide and as such was remitted to rehabilitation. He made the decision to sell his chauffeur business, so that he could better understand his condition and how he may help others with their Mental Health struggles.

Where possible, Nick loves to raise money for Charity by planning and taking part in events, over the years he has been involved in:

  • The Basrah Valentine Half Marathon, where over 450 Multinational Armed Forces personnel took part in a Half Marathon, in the searing heat of Iraq, which also included a sandstorm!
  • 1000mile non-stop cycle ride from Esbjerg down the west coast, through Europe to Ranville in France, for the 60th Anniversary of D-Day.

Since leaving the military, aside from the odd Firewalk, Nick has been unable to take part in anything due to his medical condition. That is until he was put in touch with ‘Bike Tours For The Wounded’ who support Military personnel that have been subjected to life changing injuries due to their service.

They offered Nick the opportunity to accompany them on a tour of Route 66 in America for 10 days, as a pillion passenger on the back of a Harley Davidson, which he duly accepted. This was not only a great opportunity, but also a huge challenge with it involving sitting on the bike for ten hours a day to cover the distances involved.

The past three years has seen Nick fight back from a breakdown, failed suicide attempt, severe PTSD, Rehabilitation, further thoughts of suicide and all whilst experiencing daily chronic spinal pain. Therefore, this was so much more than an opportunity, it was the chance of life changing experience for him.

To help towards the costs, Nick completed a Rough Runner, consisting of a 10KM cross country route, combined with fifteen challenging obstacles that needed to be overcome. This by itself is challenging enough for most, however, once you have taken into account his debilitating medical injuries, both physical and mental, then you can gain an idea of what a hugely challenging and dangerous risk this was.

Through demonstrating the values Nick loves so dearly, combined with the odd bit of dogged determination and in true “cheeky chappy” Nick Wilson style, he crawled up the Travellator at the end, to successfully complete the Rough Runner, raising some £1,200. In total to date, Nick and all those who have supported him through the years, has managed to raise over a staggering £50,000 for various charities.

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Testimonials

Katy Frith

A really interesting and engaging session today, thank you so much for attending. It’s not often that such a session will provide a full action plan for an organisation and some really key areas to address, in order to address Mental Health within the workplace. Highly recommended any organisation having Nick come in and speak to your staff, your managers or your leaders! Thanks again, Nick!

Katy Frith
HR Manager, Havebury

Danny Morgan

I highly recommend Nick, the depth of his knowledge and the manner in which he openly talks about a subject that affects so many lives is nothing short of inspiring.

Danny Morgan
Tech IOSH, Health, Safety & Facilities Manager

Glen Clayton

It was a pleasure and an honour to have you in this morning to speak about PTSD Nick, I know the team took away some great insight and learning around this topic. Thank you

Glen Clayton
Aspire Oxford

Mental Health First Aid Attendee

This morning a colleague came to me and told me they’d considered taking their own life and were talked out of it by an emergency helpline. They’re still really struggling to cope and needed to tell someone. If it weren’t for you, I don’t think I would have had the skills to handle that well at all. I’d have done my best, but there was one key thing you said on the course that I repeated during the conversation and it made such a difference. It was simply to say to that person “that’s ok, that’s completely normal and you’re not alone in feeling that way.” It changed the entire conversation. I haven’t tried to ‘fix’ things or create solutions to their problems but my colleague really appreciated being able to tell someone and we’re keeping the lines of communication open. Their family don’t even know that they came close to taking their own life, but we’re talking things through and looking at support options together.

Thank you again for being so open and honest about your own experiences and providing me with the tools to help my colleagues talk about their challenges. It made all the difference.

Jamie Briggs

We were delighted that Nick agreed to give up his time to talk to club members after training on World Mental Health day. He gave a very honest, candid talk about his journey with depression and PTSD to 55 players and members alike which was greeted with great respect. It was extremely well planned and presented.
Banbury Rugby Club prides itself on being a forward thinking, open, family club and Nick certainly helped to support this ethos by giving a better understanding of mental health and the impact it can have on individuals and their families and friends. We wish him well on his journey and look forward to seeing him on the sidelines at the club.

Jamie Briggs
Senior Rugby Club Chairman, Banbury Rugby Club

Esther Wasser

Thanks very much for a wonderfully informative, very real and much needed talk about Mental Health. Our employees appreciate now much more the importance of Self care and overall the importance of Mental health as a topic. They were truly grateful for your honesty and openness throughout the talk and waiting to speak with them individually afterwards, was very generous.

Esther Wasser
Senior People Business Partner, McAfee