Whether it's through magic, speaking, or something as simple as grabbing a coffee and being a listening ear, Steve is committed to leading a shift in how the world perceives the importance of mental health. Having dealt with his own mental health challenges, Steve uses magic to put words to thoughts that feelings that are difficult to express in ways that nudge others towards courage, vulnerability, and taking the next steps towards healing and improving mental health.
His work in these areas has connected him with some of the top motivational speakers and business leaders in the world.
POOR MENTAL HEALTH CAN FEEL LIKE TRYING TO RUN A MARATHON IN A STRAITJACKET.
So, that's what Steve did. In 2019, Steve became the first person in the world to run a marathon in a straitjacket and escape it (after running 26 miles) just before crossing the finish line as a symbol of hope and perseverance.
SHIFTING THE PERCEPTION OF MENTAL HEALTH
Steve has been working hard to shift the perspective of mental health since 2017 when he first started performing his signature straitjacket escape routine at a college in Kansas. In the years following this performance, Steve found what connected most with audiences were the times he authentically shared about his own mental health struggles and encouraged others to take the next courageous step. With this in mind, Steve decided to bring this encouraging metaphor to life by running the 2019 Indianapolis Monumental Marathon in a straitjacket, then attempt to escape it after running 26 miles so as to speak to the fact that we all run the race of life and we will all encounter different obstacles and hardships along the way--some of which feel like trying to run a marathon while locked in a straitjacket--but what's most important is that we focus on taking the next courageous step.
Today, Steve is focused normalizing talk around mental health struggles while emphasizing stories of recovery and progress, making mental health support services more accessible to those in need, and helping others become better communicators to increase social understanding, decrease judgement, and--ultimately--create more space for hope, wonder, and joy.
We all run the race of life and we will all inevitably deal with different barriers, burdens, and hardships along the way, but what's most important is that we continue to take the next step in the midst of those things. Steve's goal in running a marathon in a straitjacket (and attempting to escape it after 26 miles) was to give a real life example of the mental battles many people face today. When life gets hard, it can feel like trying to run a marathon in a straitjacket--lungs compressed, hands bound, legs on fire from the distance traveled thus far--but just like a marathon is completed step-by-courageous-step so also is the overcoming of life's hardships.
With the completion of the marathon, Steve became the first person recorded in history to escape a straitjacket after running a marathon. Now a feature-length film, the marathon documentary can been seen at select live events with a post showing Q&A with Steve.
Interested in hosting a unique motivational event on your campus or as part of your next event? If so, Steve is up for the challenge!
Colleges & Nonprofits: Consider having Steve speak to group in the morning, invite them to write their hardships on his straitjacket, then run a half marathon in the jacket only to escape in front of group during an afternoon/evening session.
COURAGE OVER FEAR PODCAST
In an effort to continue the conversation started by his documentary, Steve started the Courage Over Fear Podcast, in which he explores the relationship between courage, fear, and the lessons learned between through a series of interviews with amazing guests and solo episodes where shares thoughts on deeper issues. Since its inception in 2020, Steve has interviewed world record holders, the CEO of a multimillion dollar wellness company, the former President of Starbucks, and many more.
Everyone has a straitjacket--a negative thought, a false belief, a bad habit--that's holding them back from taking the next step. Steve's straitjacket routine is unique hybrid experience with roots stemming from psychology and sociology, escape artistry, motivational speaking, and performance art.
Informed by leading research, personal experience, and conversations after his shows, Steve speaks to what it feels like to feel trapped, burdened, and confined by the straitjackets of life and offers a heart-warming and inspiring perspective to help others take their next step.
RAVES & REVIEWS
PROFESSIONAL ESCAPE ARTIST
America's Got Talent, Britain's Got Talent, CBS' World's Best
CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Take New Ground
In a world in which it's easy to follow popular trends, Steve's straitjacket message and escape is different, refreshing, and inspiring. Steve is truly one-of-a-kind and I am excited to see what he'll do next."
As someone who strives to build groups around the power of vulnerability and has seen the incredible results of a team that trusts each other, Steve's ability to clearly illustrate the role of vulnerability in our lives is exceptional. Our team now has some great analogies for the work we're doing to build trust in our community."
I didn't know what to expect coming in and my mind was blown--very inspiring. Steve has something to say and I'm really inspired. I want to bring all my friends back next time."