10 Questions with Shawn Fields
Shawn is currently the Chief Well-Being Officer of The Transformational Well-Being Institute. He believes in using integral and positive philosophies, along with a heavy dose of Self-Determination Theory, to increase self-awareness and self-transcendence in individuals and organizations. Shawn has also been a Marine, construction worker, musician, radio host, businessman, librarian, Rotarian, consultant, learning center director, and advisor. His degrees include a Bachelor of Science in Business Management, a Master of Library Science, a Master of Arts in Religious Studies, a Master of Science in Positive Psychology and Coaching Psychology (ABD), and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative and Professional Writing (in progress). Shawn is the Treasurer on the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Association for the Gifted.
WHAT IS THE BEST ADVICE YOU HAVE EVER RECEIVED AND WHY?
My father often told me, "If you are going to do something, do it right." This was the embodiment of his work ethic and commitment to people. If he promised something, he delivered, no matter how difficult it was for him personally to do so. If you take on a job, do everything you can to give your absolute best performance. I have followed this advice and it has served me well in every environment. Even when I fail to maintain the standard set by this dictum, it helps me bounce back to do better the next time.
WHO HAS INSPIRED YOU AND WHY?
My mother is my biggest inspiration. I am pretty sure that if you X-rayed her, you would find a steel core. For years she put in a massive amount of extra time to make sure the kids at her school were getting the best services, all while caring for my ailing father who was constantly in and out of hospitals and in need of great assistance. She managed to care for the rest of the family at the same time. She never asks for praise, she never complains, she just gets the job done. She's like the Terminator of moms.
WHAT IS THE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU COULD SHARE WITH OUR READERS TO UPLIFT THEM IN LIFE AND CAREER?
You are a magician - as you determine your own reality. Build up the will to shape this world into one that works for you.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE BOOK AND HOW DID IT INSPIRE YOU?
The Road by Cormac McCarthy is my favorite book. I'm a recovering librarian, so I'm REALLY into books. This is at the top of my list because it shows excellent craftsmanship in writing. It is also a beautiful story about love and positivity surviving in a desolate and hateful world.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO RELAX?
Reading is my greatest pleasure, so that is my main avenue to relaxation. My wife and I take long walks to enjoy each other's company and examine the flora and fauna. At the end of the day a good movie or TV show is what allows my brain to settle down.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE CHALLENGES YOU OR YOUR INDUSTRY FACES, AND HOW DO YOU OVERCOME THOSE?
We are smack dab in the middle of a negativity swarm. Almost everything that you see or read is about bad things happening, people out to get you, and harm you can do yourself. A victim mentality is not only encouraged, it is praised. This is truly harmful, as it builds an external locus of control. I personally climb out of the vortex of negativity by working on the multiple dimensions of well-being. Success builds on success.
WHAT IS ONE TREND IN YOUR INDUSTRY THAT EXCITES YOU?
The proliferation of people looking for help, and the technology that allows us to connect.
WHAT IS THE ONE THING YOU DO EVERY DAY THAT ADDS TO YOUR SUCCESS?
I keep coming back to reading, and for this question - reading! Even fiction can help you understand humans better. Understanding leads to the keys to help others.
WHAT TECHNOLOGY PRODUCT CAN’T YOU LIVE WITHOUT?
Our addiction to technology is not a good thing. I can live without any piece of technology. I do enjoy my iPad, however. It allows me to connect with my nieces and sister, read great works of human thought, and connect with clients.
PLEASE, FINISH THIS STATEMENT: LEADERSHIP IS...
figuring out how to get people to take action on things they already know are good ideas.