Dr. Michael A. Turnbull
“Live With the End in Mind”
7th Annual TEDxWilmington Conference // 27 September 2018
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Dr. Michael A. Turnbull TEDxWilmington Wilmington Delaware TEDx

Meet the Speakers: Dr. Michael A. Turnbull for TEDxWilmington
Thur. 16 August 2018

The Journey to TEDxWilmington has been a testament that dreams coming true is possible. On the evening of September 6th 2017, as nine of my family members slept together in one room, as the rest of our home was left destroyed after Hurricane Irma had ripped through our Island. I wondered: How can we recover? Is this real? Why and how did this happen? Where do we go from here?

At that moment I decided to get a Picture of the End of this journey. I reasoned to myself: at the end of this journey I want to be able to share with the World that hope and recovery is possible. Although at the moment, doubt and depression crept in my mind, I imagined an end where our Island and people were stronger, wiser and better. Our community would rebuild from this devastation emotionally and physically, but most important heal from the wounds of trauma. I envisioned myself, as I slept night after night for 96 days with no electricity, that at the end of this I would have a opportunity to share this Idea of Starting with the End in Mind as a means of healing from trauma.

Being able to realize your hopes and dreams and using the power of visualization to see the End Result is a powerful tool that can guide one out from pain and trauma and allow like a phoenix to rise from the ashes. As a fan of TEDx and TED talks I was inspire that one aspect of my End would be the opportunity to share this Idea, as I felt it was worth spreading.

So as I started to pick up the pieces post Hurricane Irma, it wasn’t steeped in the trauma and destruction, but the hope of being able to position myself to have opportunity to be prepared to speak on a world stage. As a psychologist doing Trauma debriefing with various corporations and children, I started sharing my idea worth spreading. It led to a sense of hope that ignited a fire within, but also started to allow me to live out my idea.

Confirmation came with a chance encounter with Mr. Ajit George, and my overcoming anxiety to introduce myself and ask for his card. Fast forward to receiving my invitation to speak at TEDxWilmington! This moment and the moments that have followed since that day have been filled with hope, expectation, and gives fuel that the End of your visualization is possible and attainable. This TEDx talk, a realization of one such end, and I am embracing this opportunity with all the joy, anticpation and hope that it represents to my Island and myself that recovery and healing is possible after devastation.

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the TEDx process: Dr. Michael A. Turnbull for TEDxWilmington
Tue. 4 September 2018

It’s less than a month away from TEDxWilmington’s 7th Annual Conference: “What Now?” in Wilmington, Delaware. My  moment has been playing over and over in my mind. It is sadly however only a couple days away from September 6th  which will mark the first anniversary of Hurricane Irma, the category 5 storm that ripped through my home country of the BVI (British Virgin Islands). Damaging 97% of homes, businesses and churches, leaving several people homeless, families torn apart and even worse mourning loved ones. This day will be marked by mixture of emotions but I pray that hope will be the overarching theme that rests in the hearts of my fellow brothers and sisters in the Virgin Islands. On August 26th, 2018 after 11 months and two weeks my faith community and I were able to reopen our sanctuary where we worship. It was a moment that will forever be etched in my mind. Our church structure was destroyed but our faith strengthened, daily as we came together rebuilding the physical structure while mending our hearts and mind from the trauma left by Hurricane Irma. The theme of hope and resilience reigns true.

As I approach this TEDx talk the supportive nature of the “Tribe” reminds me of how our community pulled together post-Irma, working hand in hand towards a common goal. This process of preparing for this talk has allowed me to grow and stretch, but most importantly challenge me to ensure my idea worth spreading is clear, succinct and easily communicated to world. The feedback from the speaking curators has been most helpful and challenging and has caused me to dig even deeper.

“Start with the End in Mind” will hopefully inspire those that hear to overcome obstacles, to pursue dreams in the face hardship and live every day of their life on purpose. Please join me and 28 other speakers from around the world as we converge in Delaware to share our Ideas worth spreading.


Dr. Michael A. Turnbull is a licensed clinical psychologist and ordained minister, who is passionate about making the lives of those he serves better. In every role he has demonstrated a commitment to making a positive impact through selfless service. At age 16, he started a non-profit organization, Project Lion Heart, with a simple desire to provide gifts at Christmas for at-risk children. Project Lion Heart, went on to be a strong force in the Virgin Islands, with over 300 graduates, through their full mentorship and risk diversion and prevention program for youth. READ MORE 

7th Annual TEDxWilmington Conference // Thursday September 27th 2018

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