Post Traumatic Growth Syndrome: Battling Back

We explore Post Traumatic Growth Syndrome with "Miracle on the Hudson" plane crash survivor and President of Dave Sanderson Speaks Enterprises.

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By Alan Taylor


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From the moment US Airways Flight 1549 narrowly glided past the George Washington Bridge, to wading through the cold, waste-deep waters of the Hudson River awaiting rescue, to the career and life reawakening that followed, we explore Post Traumatic Growth Syndrome with plane crash survivor and president of Dave Sanderson Speaks Enterprises, Dave Sanderson, in a candid, in-depth interview. Learn how to thrive by managing your mental state, leading effectively and communicating clearly. Plus, Entrepreneur Magazine Editor-in-Chief Jason Feifer shares how you can achieve the new American dream.

  • [00:00:00] Achieving the American Dream with Entrepreneur
  • [00:04:09] Brace for Impact: Dave Sanderson on Hudson Miracle
  • [00:11:30] Surviving and Thriving After Your Personal Plane Crash
  • [00:18:21] Manage Your Mental State in Moments that Matter
  • [00:27:52] Learn to Live with Purpose at Halftime Institute
  • [00:33:21] Find Your Core Mission, Lead with Certainty

Related: Alan Alda Reveals His Top Communication Techniques

Discover more about the segments and guests below . . .

[00:00:00] Achieving the American Dream with Entrepreneur

"The word 'entrepreneur' now is a real cultural signifier. It's a mindset . . . ." Entrepreneur Magazine's editor-in-chief, Jason Feifer, discusses the economical shift inspiring many Americans to tackle business ownership for the first time. Feifer continues, "We have to take control of our own lives and our own dreams. There's no better time time be a brand called Entrepreneur." We agree! Times have changed and entrepreneurialism is the new American dream. We find out how the Entrepreneur brand is adapting to today's media landscape to meet the needs of industry leaders everywhere. Whether you're running a lemonade stand or a venture-backed corporation, Entrepreneur has got you covered. Learn how you can take your company to the next level.

[00:04:09] Brace for Impact: Dave Sanderson on Hudson Miracle

Do you recall the story of Flight 1549, dubbed the "Miracle on the Hudson"? Today we're speaking with the last passenger to exit the plane, Dave Sanderson, president of Dave Sanderson Speaks Enterprises. Sanderson experienced a traumatic event, but instead of succumbing to depression, he saw an opportunity to grow. To begin this in-depth interview, we take a look back at that pivotal moment when airplane Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger announced over the intercom, "Brace for impact." Sanderson, seated in 15A, could see fire lapping over the left wing. As the plane narrowly glided past the George Washington Bridge and crashed into the Hudson River, Sanderson heard his deceased mother's voice: "If you do the right thing, God will take care of you." In that moment everything changed.

[00:11:30] Surviving and Thriving After Your Personal Plane Crash

Continuing Sanderson's firsthand account of the crash landing of flight 1549, we find him waste deep in water inside the plane. As he patiently waited in the 36 degree water of the Hudson River, Sanderson clung to a lifeboat until he was rescued. Flash forward, Sanderson has endeavored upon a new life path using public speaking and entrepreneurship to achieve a higher purpose. This dramatic shift is known as Post Traumatic Growth Syndrome, a term unknown to Sanderson until AARP asked him to be a case study for an upcoming article highlighting a UNC Charlotte survey. Have you ever experienced what Sanderson calls a "personal plan crash"? If so, listen now.

[00:18:21] Manage Your Mental State in Moments that Matter

"If you have the humility to prepare, you will have the confidence to execute." "Miracle on the Hudson" plane crash survivor Dave Sanderson offers this simple strategy to prepare for pivotal moments. We delve into Sanderson's new book, Moments Matter, and discuss core principles to manage your mental state and communicate effectively, no matter the situation. As a special treat for out listeners, Sanderson will send you a free copy of Chapter 1 of Moments Matter, which focuses on finding clarity in uncertain times. You'll have to listen in to find out how.

[00:27:52] Learn to Live with Purpose at Halftime Institute

In some respects, Sanderson, president of Dave Sanderson Speaks Enterprises, was baptized by fire when he survived the plane crash of Flight 1549. He emerged from the cold waters of the Hudson as a new man with a new mission. This, Sanderson says, marked the halftime of his life. If you find that you are adding dollars to your bank account, but lacking joy, Sanderson says the Halftime Institute in Dallas Texas can help. Be like Dave -- pursue your passion and make an impact. Your renaissance starts now.

[00:33:21] Find Your Core Mission, Lead with Certainty

As this episode of Entrepreneur Radio comes to a close, Sanderson offers key insights gleaned from surviving Flight 1549, the Hudson Miracle. To demonstrate how certainty begets leadership, Sanderson shares an anecdote regarding four-star General Norman Schwarzkopf where he reveals the leadership strategy which enabled troops to swiftly drive Saddam Hussein's forces out of Kuwait. Then, we find out what Sanderson is most proud of and how his whole world-view has changed post plane crash.

Entrepreneur Radio, hosted by award-winning broadcast professional, Alan Taylor, equips fans with the critical information necessary to grow their business through practical advice and thought-provoking interviews. Tune in live on Saturdays 2 p.m. EST/11 a.m. PST and Sundays 10 a.m. EST/7 a.m. PST and listen to weekly episodes on demand on

Alan Taylor

Host, Entrepreneur Radio

Alan Taylor is an award winning radio and television host and a 30-plus year broadcast professional. As a founder of Benchmark Entertainment in 1995, Taylor pioneered the business of creating radio shows as an extension of the magazines and brands they represent. Benchmark orchestrated innovative partnerships with leading publishers to replicate their content on-air, bringing their brands alive to a much larger audiences. Today, Taylor partners with the nation’s largest publishing houses. He is, on behalf of the Entertainment Right Now, the host of some of the most popular weekend talk shows in radio today: The Drive with Alan Taylor and Entrepreneur Radio. Taylor produces and co-hosts a new video series, Business & Burgers, in partnership with Microsoft and serves as a consultant and content marketing partner for USA Today Network.

Taylor’s expertise and quick wit entertain millions and he has been a featured automotive expert on ABC, CBS, CNN, FOX, NBC and others, including 15-plus years on daytime’s No. 1 morning talk show, LIVE! with Kelly. Taylor is also an in-demand guest speaker where his up-beat presentations provide both insight and motivation. Taylor is also the co-host of Motorz TV, seen in over 200 million TV households in the USA and Canada.

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