This is a show like no other. The courageous Paul de Gelder joins me to discuss his evolution from near fatal shark attack victim to environmental advocate. Paul has chased adventure wherever he could find it, from his wild ride as a hoodlum teen and his whirlwind lifestyle working in the music industry and in a strip club, to hauling his way up to the elite echelons of the Australian Defense Forces as an Army paratrooper and then a Navy bomb disposal diver.
IMPROVISE… ADAPT… OVERCOME…!
These three words – a mantra Paul learnt in the Australian Army as a young Paratrooper – resonated with him the first time he heard them.
But trouble hunted him down in the form of a nine-foot bull shark in February 2009 while diving for the Navy. Paul lost two limbs, and his career as a daredevil diver was flung into jeopardy.
Drawing on everything his eventful life had taught him, Paul left nothing to chance in his recovery. He fought through excruciating pain, smashing challenge after challenge whilst amazing the medical staff and the Australian public with his will to succeed. His inspiring story as detailed in his autobiography Uncaged takes the saying “never say die” to a whole new level.
In the years since the shark attack, Paul’s life has changed in every aspect.
Having left full time Navy Service in August 2012, after continuing to instruct Navy Divers for a further three and a half years, Paul has travelled the world as a top motivational speaker, passionate environmentalist, adventurer and mentor to school kids. He has spoken at venues across the globe, from the United Nations in New York and the US Navy in San Diego to Military celebrations in front of thousands and keynotes for multimillion dollar corporations and charity organizations around Australia and Asia.
Paul speaks candidly and humorously about overcoming adversity, embracing change and turning fears into your greatest strengths to create an amazing life personally and professionally.
He has also been a guest on every major Australian TV talk show and many in the U.S. He starred as a guest trainer on The Biggest Loser Australia, and has hosted 20 documentaries for Discovery Channel’s Shark Week, where he learned to hand feed bull sharks, hammerheads, blue sharks, dive with tiger sharks and even great whites without the protection of a cage.
Mega star Will Smith Featured Paul in his Facebook series “Bucket List” as his shark diving mentor and UFC hall of famer and now WWE star Ronda Rousey was taught how to hand feed bull sharks by Paul for a Shark Week special.
Paul also became part of an anti-poaching team in Africa to hunt poachers and film the amazing work done by the Rangers there for FEARLESS, aired on NatGeo.
Paul has been touted as one of the top 15 inspirational Australians and top 10 speakers and now based in Los Angeles he is preparing to film yet more documentaries and even completed an acting role for a 6 part mini series on Australia’s largest cable network.
An incredible life and an incredible story.
Subscribe for Free to Never Miss an Episode
Click the appropriate link to follow the show so you get every episode of What Matters Most as soon as they’re available!
Author, musician, and speaker Paul Samuel Dolman interviews a variety of people on creativity, the arts, relationships, and spirituality.
Your Review of What Matters Most Helps the Show Reach More People!
If you enjoyed this — or any! — episode of the What Matters Most podcast, please leave a review of the show! Reviews help boost the show in rankings, which makes it more visible… and that means more listeners! It’s a great way to spread the word about What Matters Most!
Help Support Future Episodes!
What Matters Most is 100% listener supported by generous pledges from people just like you.
Did this episode speak to you? Please consider pledging your support for as little as $5.00 per month… or pledge at higher levels and enjoy perks like a guided meditation audiobook, a library of Paul Samuel Dolman e-books… and more!
Read the Book That Inspires the Show
Paul Samuel Dolman, author, podcaster, and speaker, presents What Matters Most (the book!) a series of interview transcriptions from more than twenty inspirational Nashville and Tennessee residents, including special guest the journalist and author Bill Moyers.
Nashville Mayor Megan Barry, former Governor Don Sundquist, Academy Award-winning actress Patricia Neal, Grammy Award-winning entertainer Wynonna Judd, and many more share intimate and inspirational aspects of themselves.
This twentieth anniversary edition also features bonus material from thirty more notables from Tennessee, including local business owners, spiritual leaders, coaches, radio personalities, authors, and educators.