Why a Multimillionaire Credits Naivete for His Success



Hello everyone! Last week, I had the honor to interview Shawn Thomas. He is a self-made multi-millionaire who grew his company from $0 to $20 million! He’s a coach, mentor, philanthropist, and investor. I was introduced to him through Periscope.

Oh, that lovely live streaming app that has been so handy in connecting people worldwide. (If you’re not on it, get on it!)

I had followed Shawn for a while and respected his willingness to give so much of his time to mentor and coach freely on Periscope. Knowing that I love books, especially those that address entrepreneurship and mindset, you can imagine how thrilled I was when he announced he was coming out with a book!

His book The Power of Naiveté launched in January, just in time for Summit Live (aka Periscope Community Summit). Total side note – he gave out free copies at Summit Live after his keynote speech.

As my loyal Periscope viewers know, I reviewed his book shortly thereafter. For those of you who haven’t read it, the link to Amazon is available below (full disclosure, I am officially an Amazon Affiliate now). In it, Shawn tells the story of his life, pulls out the lessons learned and my favorite part – each chapter has an application portion. It covers a lot of key points regarding mindset that I believe are important for entrepreneurs.

The interview below is a brief transcription of our conversation. Reviewing it has given me a few ideas on some follow-up posts. Okay, let’s hop into the interview!

Me: What prompted you to write this book?

Shawn: I recognized the need for people to hear a story about overcoming fear and not letting it ruin your future. I started putting the book together last summer, but held off. What I found out in the process of answering questions [on social media] is that fear is the #1 deterrent for people finding happiness and success in their life.

So I knew I was onto something about writing about my story – how I could have made different choices based on fear – but instead how my choices led to the ultimate end result I now have.

Me: I like that you included a practical application portion in each chapter.

Shawn: People read just to read. It’s good to have knowledge. But if you don’t do anything with it, you’ll forget it and it’s like you didn’t read it in the first place. I’ve read all the books on my bookshelves, but I don’t remember everyone because I don’t apply them.

Me: What has been the reaction to this book?

Shawn: Being that the #1 thing that holds people back is fear, every feedback has been positive. I wanted to write a relatable book. I’ve received many responses that the book has confirmed to people that they are on track, that they relate to it.

Me: Mission accomplished then! I also like that you wrote about naiveté, which usually has a bad connotation.

Shawn: The thing about naiveté is to not look at the future with fear, but embrace it. Look at the future with empowerment and possibility.

Me: What has motivated you along your entrepreneurial journey?

Shawn: I have been very transparent that my motivation in life drew out of negativity. It drew out of envy and jealousy as a child. I saw people had things and wanted them because my family couldn’t afford them. That anger propelled me to achieve.

Because I didn’t have a mentor, I made a lot of mistakes. My learning curve was greater than someone who would have had a mentor. I focused 100% on financial development – not on personal development or well-roundedness as far as spirituality.

My experience with AskAMillionaire is that there are millions of people who feel the same way when they are in their youth. What I try to teach them and what motivates me now is to reach as many people who grew up with the same feelings that I had and teach them the basic fundamental of turning negative energy into positive energy.

Don’t try to prove people wrong, prove yourself right! Don’t be selfish. You’ll get your goals faster if you’re NOT trying to fight the world. Prove yourself right. You can achieve your goal by helping people.

Me: I love that! Okay, so no my favorite question. What books would you recommend?

Shawn: To make a good recommendation, I would need to know what book would they need at this moment in their life. Although, The Alchemist is a great book that everyone should read.


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