Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • I think it is harder to succeed when you're disabled.

  • I think there is a lot of... the odds are stacked against you.

  • It's harder to get into school, a local school.

  • It's harder to go to university, it's harder to get a job.

  • So really success is far further away when you're starting out.

  • However, when you have a disability you learn certain things, like resilience and communication, just because it's how you get by in day to day life.

  • And if you're able to harness those in the right direction and the right way, then I think that enables you to be successful.

  • [Martyn is a blogger, author and entrepreneur. He was born with spinal muscular atrophy.]

  • [In 2017, one of his businesses was sold to Airbnb. He has travelled to 20 countries.]

  • My first tip is "dream big."

  • I can remember watching Michael Palin on the TV and thinking, "Wow, I'd love to just travel the world like him."

  • When I was at university, I decided I would go for a trip on the other side of the world.

  • I can remember being at Sydney Bridge and looking over the harbour and having goosebumps on my arms that I was there, I'd done it.

  • And it was such an amazing feeling of achievement.

  • I've not been able to stop travelling ever since.

  • I'm definitely not suggesting that everyone should do the kind of adventures I've done, but I think it's very important for people to push their own comfort zone because it just gives you so much confidence and a feeling that you can achieve anything and you can put that back into your day to day life as well.

  • So my next tip is "write 10 ideas a day."

  • Creativity is like a muscle and you have to train it.

  • Every morning I write my 10 ideas on my phone.

  • I write down the numbers 1 to 10, I pick the topic.

  • That could be about business, or it could be about how to improve my health and wellbeing, or it could just be about how to have some fun tomorrow.

  • The point of the exercise is just to come up with ideas and there is no pressure or expectation to actually use any of them.

  • The first five normally come really quickly, but as you're starting to get near the end it gets really hard and that's a bit like going to the gym, you know that you're stretching the muscle and improving it.

  • "Say it straight" is my next tip.

  • Good communication is key to all relationships in life, personal and professional.

  • So with my disability sometimes it's difficult doing handshakes and there's been some quite awkward moments where people think I'm leaving them hanging and it's just a bit uncomfortable.

  • But I've learned to say, quite directly, please can you shake my left hand because that just enables me not to have to take my other hand off the joystick.

  • So I would say overall, you don't ever have to be rude or nasty to people, but you should always speak your truth.

  • My final tip is to "make jokes".

  • Having a good sense of humour is a powerful tool and it breaks down lots of barriers.

  • Particularly in my life, there are definitely times where people see the wheelchair before they see me and I could get angry by that, or I could try to be very educating and serious.

  • So I find that humour is a good way of putting them at ease and opening up a more normal and relaxed dialogue.

  • When I look back on the achievements it's quite surreal.

  • It sometimes has felt, the last couple of years, that my life's been like a movie.

  • So I think there's a bit of... it's still sinking in to some degree as well.

  • Thanks for watching. If you enjoy that, be sure to check out these videos next.

  • And if you haven't already, hit the subscribe button, and click the bell to get notification each time we upload a new video.

I think it is harder to succeed when you're disabled.

Subtitles and vocabulary

Operation of videos Adjust the video here to display the subtitles

A2 harder humour disability enables life communication

Tips for success from writer and entrepreneur Martyn Sibley | BBC Ideas

  • 4063 194
    Summer posted on 2021/09/01
Video vocabulary