S3 Ep 071 Scott Shute Wants You To Experience Joy

In this episode, Scott shares some actionable steps we can all start to take today to be an ambassador of compassion and bring joy, not just happiness, into our lives. 
S3 Ep 071 Scott Shute


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Show Notes

In today’s episode, we have a truly remarkable guest. Scott Shute is an award-winning author and former executive at LinkedIn. Scott’s vision and mission are nothing short of inspiring. With over two decades of experience in the technology industry, including managing a team of over 1,000 employees at LinkedIn, he has taken a unique path in bridging the gap between modern workplaces and ancient wisdom practices. Scott shares with us today some actionable steps we can all start to take today to be an ambassador of compassion and bring joy, not just happiness, into our lives. 

S3 Ep 071 Scott Shute

In this episode, you will hear: 

  • Pros and cons of punctuality. 
  • Scott’s book, “The Full Body Yes” and what that experience feels like. 
  • Operationalizing compassion and mainstreaming mindfulness
  • Why mental health is so important for your biggest asset – your employees. 
  • The difference between happiness and joy. 
  • Why phones are a goldmine of distraction. 
  • Changing Work from the Inside Out. 

Scott Shute – Award-Winning Author, Former LinkedIn Exec

Scott’s vision and mission are to Change Work from the Inside Out by Mainstreaming Mindfulness and Operationalizing Compassion.

His latest venture, Changing Work, seeks to curate the best practices of conscious business and make them more widely available. Scott’s work has been featured in publications such as Forbes, and Fast Company and podcasts such as Good Life Project. He is the author of the award-winning book “The Full Body Yes.”  An active advocate for customers and employees in the technology space for over 20 years, he managed a team of over 1,000 employees at LinkedIn as an operations VP before switching roles to combine his long-time passions with his practical leadership and operations skills as Head of Mindfulness and Compassion Programs.

He is at the intersection of the workplace and ancient wisdom practices and is a pioneer in bringing these two worlds together. He began contemplative practice at age 13 and started teaching while in college. His unique combination of deep mindfulness experience and years as a Silicon Valley executive uniquely position him to help companies evolve consciously. Scott works as an executive coach and culture consultant, leads workshops, and does keynote speaking.

Connect with Scott Shute:

Website: www.scottshute.com 

Website: https://changingwork.org/ 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/scottshute/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/scottshutephotos/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheFullBodyYes 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/scottshute1

Book: The Full Body Yes – https://www.scottshute.com/the-book

Connect with R Blank and Stephanie Warner: For more Healthier Tech Podcast episodes and to download our Healthier Tech Quick Start Guide, visit https://www.healthiertech.co and follow https://instagram.com/healthiertech

Additional Links:


Scott Shute 0:00
So safety comes from that animal part of us. It comes from that part in our brain, the amygdala, which is trying to keep us alive, the fear center of our brain. So, every response, which is animalistic, is all about safety. It’s all about survival. It’s all about passing on the genes. But none of that drives joy. It might drive happiness, but it doesn’t drive Joy. Joy is done by the deeper things, the contemplations, the inner work, the growth as a spiritual being.

Announcer 0:31
Welcome to the healthier tech podcast, the show about building a healthier relationship with modern technology. Now, here are your hosts, R blank and Stephanie Warner.

R Blank 0:44
So Steph, you might not realise this because because you get to work at coffee or tech, but a lot of people think that Monday’s suck. Yeah,

Stephanie Warner 0:51
yeah, I’ve heard that. I’ve heard that a few times. But um, according to our next guest, it doesn’t have to.

R Blank 0:57
Yeah, well, so Scott, shoot, this is a really this is one of those conversations where it easily could have gone on for hours. He has a what I think is a very unique take on how to approach spirituality, mindfulness and compassion within the workplace, and all the benefits that it brings both employees, customers, and owners and managers. And it’s we get into a lot of different topics here. And I just can’t wait for everyone here. Yeah,

Stephanie Warner 1:30
let’s get into it.

R Blank 1:36
In today’s episode, we have a truly remarkable guest. Scott chute is an award winning author and former executive at LinkedIn. Scott’s vision and mission are nothing short of inspiring. With over two decades of experience in the tech industry, including managing a team of over 1000 employees at LinkedIn, he has taken a unique path in bridging the gap between modern workplaces and ancient wisdom practices. His latest venture, changing work aims to curate the best practices of conscious business and make them accessible to all his work has caught the attention of leading publications like Forbes and Fast Company, and he’s been featured on insightful podcasts like, Good Life project. But that’s not all. He’s also an accomplished author having penned the award winning book, the full body, yes, a guide that encapsulates his deep insights into mindfulness and conscious leadership. What sets it apart is his unique blend of profound mindfulness experience, and his years as a Silicon Valley executive. Now, as a sought after executive coach, culture consultant, and keynote speaker, he is at the forefront of a movement that’s reshaping how we view work, and leadership. Welcome to the healthier tech podcast. Scott,

Scott Shute 2:48
thanks very much for having me.

R Blank 2:49
So I was going to start off by asking you about your former position at LinkedIn, and then I listened to every other podcast you’ve been on. And that’s always the first question. So yeah.

Scott Shute 3:04
It is kind of a good story. We’ll

R Blank 3:06
get to it. But I figured just to put a little bit of a unique, healthier tech spin on things. I want to ask you, just as a starting off point. Why is it that you respect punctuality so much?

Scott Shute 3:21
That I respect punctuality?

R Blank 3:23
Yeah, well, that’s

Scott Shute 3:24
a great question. Well, so partly, it’s my father. So I’m the youngest of five, my dad, well, I grew up on a farm in the middle of Kansas, or, you know, in the rural Kansas, and my dad had been a pilot in the Air Force. And it’s just the way he was wired. We were just taught to be on time. I like to be on time. It’s just it’s just the way I was programmed and wired. And I think at the root of it is, it’s, it aligns with one of my values, which is do what you say you’re going to do. Yeah. Right. And so if we agree that we’re going to start at a certain time, I want to respect that agreement. And I expect the other person to respect that agreement as well. I’m a little looser about it now. But if somebody says, Yeah, I’m gonna be a little late to our meeting. I think that means like, 90 seconds. Yeah, if they’re taking about seven minutes, I’d like to just reschedule man,

R Blank 4:18
I’ve always been punctual to also do to my Father, not my mother. But But I remember now when when I had my software company in Los Angeles, and we were implementing agile, getting people to actually be like, exactly on time was one of the big learning curves. And the thought was, you know, if you can’t keep that promise, how are you going to keep all your other promises? And yeah,

Scott Shute 4:48
we there’s there’s a flip side, I’ll make the case for the other side as well. Not Not in all cases, because I think there’s a well anyway, that’s a whole another topic we could talk about and ghosting and just being late, but one of the downsides About being super time sensitive. All of this comes from Myers Briggs as well, one of the like, I’m an INTJ. And I think the Jays are very time sensitive. But one of the downsides of time sensitivity is I would be having these meetings, and it’d be, you know, we’d have three minutes to go, it’d be 1057, I’m getting ready for my 11 o’clock. And I would shut it down, no matter what was happening. And sometimes that’s not the right move as a leader, sometimes you’re right in the middle of a big, juicy, important conversation. You’ve gotten all the right people to be there. And so I know that there’s some flexibility to happen and and ultimately, to keep asking ourselves, Well, what will best serve in this moment? But arriving on time very important to me.

R Blank 5:44
Yeah. I mean, there’s always going to be some kind of tension between flexibility and rigidity. And I should say, you know, the reason I knew you care about punctuality isn’t just because you showed up for this recording exactly on time. But also, because it’s something you discussed about yourself in the full body. Yes. And in addition to your, your experience, at LinkedIn, which we’ll get into, I really want to get into the full body. Yes, because I hadn’t really read another book. Like it. So I followed your advice in the intro, which is, if you just want to know what I’m saying, jump to chapter 17. I did that. But I’m doing it on Kindle. So I can see exactly where in the book I am. So basically, 8% of your book, are your key lessons. And the other and maybe 5% Is the Intro Hi, I’m Scott. And so the the inner, the interim, whatever that adds up to 88%. Those are all like vignettes that are grouped into categories and their vignettes throughout, not just your professional career, but also your your upbringing and your personal life. What led you to to work on a structure like that door?

Scott Shute 7:08
Good question. Well, in the moment that I wrote it, which was kind of, you know, 2020, I was the I was the head of mindfulness and compassion programmes at LinkedIn. And people, you know, it’s a common question like, well, first of all, how did you get this job? And what does it even mean? Like, what are you trying to do? What’s your objectives? And so, part of me wanted to write a book to say, here’s what I think being compassionate means as a leader, or as a person or living a real life. Right? Not in a monastery, not tucked away somewhere just by yourself, but like living a real life. And so my book, follow this model. So I have this model for what is compassion, and it’s, it’s basically, four steps, you first, you do it for yourself three ways, meaning you have capacity, because capacity ebbs and flows day by day. So capacity for awareness of what’s going on within me. Right awareness of myself, that’s the first one. The second one is a mindset of kindness towards myself, or you could say, do I love myself? And the third one is courage to take action. Once I know what’s going on, do I actually have the courage to do the quote, right thing? And these are exactly the same three steps that we then use for other people. Right? Do we have awareness of other people? Do we have a mindset of wishing the best for them or wishing kindness towards them? And then do we have the courage to take action on their behalf, you know, to be a compassionate person. And so once I had this model, then essentially all the stories of my life fit into, you know, one of those kind of teaching points. And the book is nonlinear. Right? It’s, it will, it will jump around based on what the most poignant story I have, or the most poignant experience I have fits into that teaching model. So

R Blank 8:55
okay, so you, you jumped over to your your title and at LinkedIn, which is, as you said, head of mindfulness, and compassion programmes at LinkedIn. And I know that you didn’t just stumble upon that job posting on indeed.com. Right? So you’re like, COO, or your operations manager, a,

Scott Shute 9:17
I was a VP of Customer operations. So I ran all the customer facing stuff that wasn’t sales, essentially. Big team right in the heart of the growth phase of LinkedIn. And, you know, so there’s this part of me that was an executive and had whatever 25 years of being a senior leader in the in the workplace. But there’s this other part of me since 13. I’ve had a spiritual practice. I’ve had a contemplation or meditation practice. I’ve been teaching since college. It’s been a huge part of my life. I’m a member of the clergy in my in the spiritual path that I follow, but I never talked about it at work. But LinkedIn was pretty different. I recognised pretty early on, like it just felt different RCE Joe was talking about his own meditation practice using headspace. He was, you know, talking about compassion in the workplace. And we had people around us who were, you know, consultants who were talking about conscious business. And I thought, Okay, this is a place where maybe I can bring some of this in a secular way to the workplace. And so I started by leading one meditation session, which turned into, you know, like, on the first time, I was scared, really scared, there was one person who was there. And I’m sure he was just as scared as I was. I never saw that do it again. The next week, there were like three, and then there were five, and then it was a regular thing. And then I kept getting invited to bigger and bigger things. As people knew that I did it. I was like, you know, the meditation exec, I’m using air quotes for those at home who can’t see me. And you know, the CFO would have an off site with two or 300 people of financial gathering and wouldn’t invite me to kick it off with an eight minute meditation. Or the the chief marketing officer would hold an offside and have breakouts and do meditation sessions. And all of that just kind of, you know, over three or four years, I just did more and more and more, I created a mindfulness programme with a bunch of other volunteers. And then for me, the turning point was when our CEO gave the commencement address at Wharton, right, very buttoned down Wharton, or he’s an alumni. And in his commencement address, he talked about compassion. If you’re going to be successful in life, in work, be compassionate. I thought, well, that’s interesting. That’s very, that’s a very public and vulnerable thing to say, for this very senior and well respected leader. Next day, he’s on Good Morning, America, this is all they want to talk about is compassion in business. So he comes home, while I’m watching all this thinking, Okay, it’s time, I’d been in my ops role for like six years, I’m ready to do something else. It’s also time for LinkedIn. Here’s the CEO, he essentially told our whatever, at the time, 15,000 employees that compassion was the most important thing that they could do. But we weren’t really doing anything about it. Other than just kind of talking about at a super high level. So I made this pitch to him. I’m an operations guy, I can operationalize compassion, I can mainstream mindfulness, right things that I knew he cared about. And that was, you know, as you might imagine, very hard to say no to. So between his great support and the support from the head of HR, we created this role. And I did that role for three years.

R Blank 12:28
If you had to go into another company, and pitch this, which I mean, you’re sort of trying to do through changing work. That’s right. Yeah. How do you express the benefits to an employer of embracing mindfulness and compassion? Like, where does that show up on the balance sheet?

Stephanie Warner 12:52
Yeah, that’s exactly what I was gonna ask.

Scott Shute 12:54
Thank you. I kind of break it up into two pieces, because I do view them as differently. Mindfulness, I think we’re further along with with tools like headspace and calm, sadly, well, okay. So here’s how I think about it. Every leader in the world knows that, that a gym at work is good for you, right? If our employees are healthy, ultimately, it’s good for the business. And nobody asks the gym owner, you know, hey, what’s the ROI of that new rowing machine you just installed? You know, what’s the ROI of all these weights? But we are asking me the question, what’s the ROI of a mindfulness programme? And I think of it like this is the difference between physical exercise and mental and emotional exercise. And then I asked the question, all right, of all your employees, what percentage of them need to run a six minute mile for their job? You know, what percentage of them need to benchpress their weight or twice their weight? Or be able to do you know, two hours worth of TRX or whatever? And I get laughs right. And I asked, well, what percent of gr employees do we need to be mentally focused? Or to be emotionally stable? Like, oh, and then the lights go on? You know, and especially with the last few years of COVID, and last few years of really understanding that our mental wellness is a problem. It’s a problem for society. It’s a problem for every lots of individuals, which means it’s a problem for companies. It absolutely affects the bottom line, when our employees are not at their best. Because in the information age, absolutely. By far, our employees are by far our biggest resource, our biggest asset. And so of course, you want to invest in your biggest asset. So that’s the mindfulness side. And what I would say is, you know, a lot of companies have ticked the box, okay, we gave everybody access to headspace. We’re good. Oh, okay. That’s that. No, that’s not quite it. Like it needs to have some attention on it so that people actually use the programmes and you build some momentum around it. Now, and And largely, I do think mindfulness probably is in the wellness world, right? And probably managed by the same people who manage all the other wellness and benefits programmes. Okay, that’s good. And I’m a huge believer, but I actually think compassion and operating in a compassionate way, is way, way, way more impactful and powerful. And here’s how I think about that. If we created a world, and there’s science to back this up, Raj Sisodia, and the team that wrote the book on conscious capitalism, and Firms of Endearment have done this research, companies who take care of all of their stakeholders, meaning not just their shareholders, but also their customers and their employees in a balanced way. And on purpose. They’re actually more profitable than average. In terms, it’s actually 14 times that’s 14 100%, more profitable than the s&p average. And if you think about it, that makes sense, right? We want to provide customers high value. What about employees? Well, the employee thing comes and goes kind of in waves, you know. But here’s the thing, when we really on purpose, create an amazing place for employees, an amazing value proposition for customers, and we return a good return for the people who have invested their money in us, we do well. And if you want to think about how this works in our own lives, just think about your primary relationship. Because this is what usually happens at work at work, we usually think about how do we make money? Well, in our primary relationship, if if we thought, okay, we want to be happy, right, that’s our goal in our primary relationship. But in my primary relationship, if my path to happiness was I insist on getting my way, 100% of the time. Does this lead to my 100%? Happiness? Everybody’s laughing at home? Of course not. Right? You understand that? If you create balance, like if I create balance with my spouse, if I create balance with the needs of my kids and my spouse, then we collectively are happier, which means I individually am more happy. And exactly the same thing is true with companies.

R Blank 17:16
A rising tide lifts all boats sort of okay.

Stephanie Warner 17:21
Yeah. Yeah, I was, um, I love that in like, the concept is really powerful and beautiful. But I wonder how do you start to introduce the concept of compassion into a company?

Scott Shute 17:33
Sure. So you think about it as and we don’t even have to use the word compassion. Right? We could think about value value for our customers value for employees value for shareholders. I’ll give you an example. But guess what it means in my in my model? Okay, well, let’s break it down. In my model, do I have awareness? So think about customers? Do we really know what our customers want? Right? Do we really know what will be valuable for them? Sometimes companies are just focused on their own products, I’m just going to make whatever I want. And then whoever can buy it if they want. But if we really deeply understood our customers values, and what they want and the problems we’re trying to solve, probably we’re going to deliver better solutions for them. Yeah. The second one is, do we have? You know, do we have their best interests in mind, including ours? But there’s two, right? And this? And then the third one? Do we have the courage to take action? Ah, this is where it gets troublesome. So you imagine a company like LinkedIn. So you could pick several examples, but let’s take privacy, right, as an example. So what’s good for the customer? Well, the customer wants to be able to control their data, where does their data go? What’s displayed, what what gets shared and what doesn’t get shared. But any internet and company in the world, you know, if they were just solving for themselves, they would say, well, I’ll take your data and do whatever I want with it. Because I can make money off of that data. Right. And so it’s this balance of, alright, I want to do what’s right for the customer. And also what’s right for me, the company. And so where’s the balance, and then we’re really plays is I’ll give me an example. I was part of as when I was head of customer operations, I sat on the product executive team, these are the people who are building the product. And every week, we would have three or four or six or eight sessions called product reviews. It’s a time where a product manager comes in, they share what they’re working on with the executives who are leading product. And it’s kind of like Shark Tank. You know, if you’ve seen that show without all the attitude, like they’re pitching, pitching the next version of their product, right? And so they come in and they say, okay, hey, friends, you know, with this next generation of product, we’re going to it’s going to yield 15% more engagement 15% more clicks and blah, blah, blah. Here’s all the good stuff that’s going to happen. The first question it leads At least in this time period that I was in it, the first question was always, okay, well, that’s great. But what about the member experience? In other words, what are we doing to get that 15% extra clicks? And if the product manager didn’t have a good answer for that, or if the answer was like, Oh, well, it’s not really good. But he did. I mentioned it was 15%. Better on, you know, our engagement, the meeting would stop. And it would become very uncomfortable. Right, because, you know, the CEO, the head of product was, was basically saying, you know, we need to do what’s right for customers. And so I guarantee you that product manager never did that again. Right, it became an object lesson in our number one value at LinkedIn, which was members first, if we solve the members problem, first, the financial stuff will take care of itself. So this is a way that leaders can hold the line for a value proposition that includes all of us, by constantly saying, Here’s what our collective values are, and then be willing to say, actually, we’re going to turn this opportunity down, because it doesn’t fit our values. Because what we’re trying to do is solve our customers problems in the long term, not in the short term, not just to meet the street, but in the long term. And that takes a lot of courage sometimes. So in,

R Blank 21:20
in the full body. Yes. Oh, and actually, before we ask more questions about it, the title refers to a feeling that you are conscious of but extends deeper than the conscious consciousness when you know, something is right. You’re in the right place. You’re doing the right thing it’s meant to be Yeah. Did I get that?

Scott Shute 21:40
Exactly? I think it’s most poignant, when we have struggled. Right? I don’t know if you all have had this experience of the some of these big moments in life. Like, should I join this relationship? Should I leave this relationship? Should I take this job? Should I leave this job? You know, anything. And sometimes we’re super conflicted. But I’ve had moments of total clarity, moments where it just came to me moments where I was in contemplation, and I asked whatever you want to call it, God or the universe or whatever, what should I do? And I just got this deep, deep deep knowingness. That’s what I mean by the full body. Yes. When you’re just all of your internal systems are in alignment, and you know the answer. Yeah.

R Blank 22:23
And stuff. You recognise that feeling?

Stephanie Warner 22:25
Oh, yeah. Yeah, recently? Yeah, definitely. What I love that the concept of that just deep knowing and kind of giving yourself the space to let the answers, you know, to feel in line in alignment with the question, and what the potential answers are. Yeah.

Scott Shute 22:46
So So part of the book is, one is calling it out. So people know what it is and that it exists. And then two is giving some techniques of how to go get it when you don’t have it. Because that’s the agony is when you’re in the middle of one of these decisions, or pain points, and you feel kind of the tearing between whatever it is your values and your mind or whatever is happening. How do we how do we quiet all that and just go get it. That’s also what I talked about.

R Blank 23:14
And along those lines, right, because what you just described as a struggle, and one thing that I felt you really hit hard in the book is this tension between safety and happiness, and that we’re physiologically wired to pursue safety, even at a unconscious or subconscious or barely conscious level, when ostensibly or overtly we think we are seeking happiness or we are trying to seek and I understood all the physiological mechanisms you were describing, because we talk about tech addiction. We talk about dopamine, we talk about it, but I’d never really heard it framed as this, what I read as a battle between safety and happiness, because you think just objectively safety as part of happiness, but your framing, at least the way I read it, they are opposed to each other.

Scott Shute 24:18
Not necessarily opposed to each other. Here’s here’s, but in some way, okay, so here’s how I think about it. We’re on this evolutionary spectrum or journey, right? And on one end, we’re animals, right? We’re homosapiens. We’re mammals. And every single one of our instant reactions are the first reaction we have to everything is a reaction. It’s an animalistic reaction, born by 1000s, or hundreds of 1000s or millions of years of programming of evolutionary programming, right. So but as we move away from some of that programming, and the language gets strange here, but whatever you want to call it, we wake up or we become more evolved or we become more conscious. We have a would call it we become more aware that we are soul. Right? We become aware that we are spiritual beings instead of just mammals. Right? And so, I think what a lot of us are chasing with the hedonistic things is happiness. But I don’t I draw a distinction between happiness and joy. Right? Happiness is the stuff that happens to us. Yeah, if I buy a new mountain bike today, or a new guitar, or my wife says something nice to me, yeah, I’m gonna be happy. But, but what happens the next day when I don’t have those things, right. But joy is an internal out stage. It’s an inside job. And joy for me is essentially a level of consciousness. It’s how much we love life. It’s how much we are aware of ourselves as spiritual beings. And so safety, back to your point, safety comes from that animal part of us. It comes from that part in our brain, the amygdala, which is trying to keep us alive, the fear centre of our brain. So every response, which is animalistic, is all about safety. It’s all about survival. It’s all about passing on the genes. But none of that drives joy. It might drive happiness, but it doesn’t drive Joy. Joy is done by the deeper things, the contemplations, the inner work, the growth as a spiritual being. So

R Blank 26:20
this is the obviously the healthier tech podcast as I was reading the book, one thing that because of that jumped out at me, was your opinion on the way in which we use phones. And that I believe you call them a goldmine of distraction? Is that did I get that right up there like that? Yeah. So we’ll talk a little bit about that, about how the relationship with tech impacts people’s pursuits that you’re describing, or advocating. And then also, you know, some of how you relate to your own personal devices,

Scott Shute 26:55
your I think I’m not going to tell you or your listeners, anything new here, we are wildly distracted, right. And if we’re trying to move away from being an animal towards being a spiritual being, there’s not much on our phone that helps with that there are some. But it’s all we’re all triggered by the animalistic impulses, right? The dopamine hit of seeing the my new email, or looking at my likes and comments on social media, bla, bla, bla, bla, bla, all of it distracts from me going to do the inner work or me taking a walk out. Like if I take a break from work, I’m just as guilty as a lot of people, I’ll put on my headphones and make a call or I’ll put on my headphones and listen to your podcasts. Instead of just taking a walk and watching the sunlight filter through the leaves, right, or having some wonder at the clouds. So So I think probably if somebody’s listening to this podcast, they’re probably already aware of that tension. Okay, so then your question is, Okay, what about me? Well, first of all, I don’t know, I’m, I am just as guilty as a lot of people. But there are some things I tried to do. So I don’t sleep with my phone, my phone sleeps in another room. So I’m not bothered by it. It’s not the first thing I look at when I wake up. The first thing I do when I wake up 630 Every day is I go outside, to get away from it, if I look, and I meditate is my point. And I get away from my little command centre here in front of my computer, I get away from my phone, I get away from all of the distractions, I go outside under my tree, and I meditate. And this is my way of trying to at least get some separation to start the day, in a way without it. I’ve turned off all my notifications, I only read I should say I try to only read the headlines of news instead of getting sucked into look at both sides. Both sides, have a bone to pick with each other, you know, in any side of the thing. So I’m trying to stay as neutral as I can with the you know, the world that I live in while still living in the world that I live in.

R Blank 29:08
That sounds really sane. The one thing that stood out to me, because as you said, you know, everything you just said is in one way or another something that’s come up on previous episodes. But we’ve never had someone talk about that immediately after talking about the battle between happiness and joy. Yeah. And so it sounds like the way in which we’re engaging with our phones, is sacrificing our joy. Absolutely in favour of the happiness drive.

Scott Shute 29:39
Absolutely. If you think about there are very few things I do on my phone that I feel drive joy or drive real value. Like one is I have a meditation app that I listened to that has a mantra that sings for like 20 minutes like when I’m on the aeroplane, I just listened to this vibration the sound that Good. I do Duolingo you know, for like 15 or 30 minutes a day, I’m trying to learn Spanish that’s super useful. It, of course, uses all the same dopamine hits and gets me addicted to learning Spanish. But at least it’s it’s getting me addicted in a way that I want to be addicted.

R Blank 30:15
I’ve literally said the same exact thing to other guests about myself because I, I that’s how I use to Duolingo as well. Almost

Scott Shute 30:22
everything else, almost everything else is not driving. It’s all animalistic. It’s all reactionary. It’s all whatever. And so one of my filters is, especially if I’ve been reading the news, and I’m, it’s so hard not to, but I’ll spend whatever, 15 or 20 or an hour reading the news, and then I’ll, I’ll be aware of it. So I’ll ask myself, did that make your life better?

R Blank 30:49
And what do you think? Well, it doesn’t ever I mean,

Scott Shute 30:53
the answer has always, always know. And here’s why. It’s not that I want to bury my head in the sand and say it doesn’t exist. But here’s my filter for it. Unless I’m going to spend time trying to fix one of those problems I just read about, yeah, what’s the point? Right, if I’m going to go be a political activist, or if I’m going to try to change climate, or if I’m going to try to change poverty, or one of the 1000s of things that we get pulled into, unless I’m going to take action, it serves no purpose, other than to be a distraction from my deeper goal, which is to be enlightened, which is to be a spiritual being. So one of my favourite quotes is from Rumi 15th or 16th century Persian poet and spiritual master. He said, yesterday, I was clever, and I tried to change the world. But today, I’m wise and I’m working on changing myself. And that’s where I’m at, I want to change my consciousness, I want to change people’s consciousness around me. Because what I know is if their consciousness changes, then the decisions they’ll make about politics and environment and poverty, and everything else will be better. So to me, it’s for me personally, it’s 100%. About consciousness.

R Blank 32:03
That is a powerful quote. And I should say, you start every chapter of the full body Yes, with a quote from Rumi, I

Scott Shute 32:10
do either Rumi or Hafiz, which is another Persian poet, a year 50 or 100 years later. Yeah.

R Blank 32:16
So you’ve been, you’ve been really generous with your time, I want to make sure we get to your current endeavour, which is changing work, both name and the activity of That’s right.

Scott Shute 32:30
That’s right. You know, my mission in life still is to change work from the inside out. If you go to changing work, it’s, it’s for a couple, it’s like, it’s for anybody who wants work to be a more humane place. For one, we’re helping practitioners of this work. So people who are solopreneurs, or coaches or trainers or whatever, help them be more successful in the work they’re trying to do in the world, by offering community of like minded people by offering amplification of their work or extended knowledge. And then on the other side of it for business leaders, we’re trying to curate the best practices of conscious business, like some of the ones I mentioned, and offer those either for free just like here’s just take it or as you know, like in terms of training, or consulting, or that sort of thing. So it’s for anybody who wants the world to be a better place via the workforce. Yeah,

R Blank 33:23
cuz one thing I know, we said we, we were done with the full body. Yes. And moved on to change and work. One thing that came up in the full body, yes. Is your commentary about a sort of a bias that everybody has, or a lot of people have. That work is bad, and the rest of the life is good. Yeah,

Scott Shute 33:42
think about that. Like, what do we say about Mondays? Mondays are terrible. And what do we say about Fridays? Oh, Fridays are awesome. Why? Because the because we live for the weekend? Well, it doesn’t have to be like that. What if we all went to work on Monday excited about the people we were going to be with excited about the vision and the mission of the company, excited about the work and how we put our shoulder behind the wheel of that thing. It can happen. Now you imagine doing that for 3.3 billion people. That’s how many people are in the workforce. And imagine the change that would ensue.

R Blank 34:17
That’s amazing. You also have your work cut out for you.

Scott Shute 34:23
Yeah, you should like that a challenge Yeah. Put

R Blank 34:27
that as a tagline on changing work I’m on the website now trenching. work.org you should put that up there you know, making Mondays not suck. Yeah.

Scott Shute 34:36
We talk about it as you know, making work not suck. Doesn’t have to suck. But not everybody appreciates that language or my humour. So

Stephanie Warner 34:47
but they all internally feel that way. Like yeah, I get it, but also I get it. Totally.

R Blank 34:53
Well, Scott, this has been I easily could have gone on for two hours with this, but I want to be respectful of your time. Um, we talked about the book full body, yes, which is on Amazon, and your new endeavour changing work, which is at changing work.org. And that’s where everyone can learn about how they can change their work and their their view of their jobs and, and everything that we’ve been talking about here. So, Scott, thank you so much for taking the time to come join us on the healthier tech podcast today. My

Scott Shute 35:23
pleasure and everybody out there, go out there and be ambassadors for compassion, because, you know, we need you.

Stephanie Warner 35:30
What a great way to end. Thank you so much. Thank you.

Announcer 35:35
Thank you so much for listening to this episode of the healthier tech podcast. Remember to check the show notes for all the links and resources mentioned in the show. Please like and subscribe to the healthier tech podcast on Apple, Spotify or your podcast platform of choice. Get your free quickstart guide to build a healthy relationship with technology and our latest information at healthier tech.co

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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R Blank

R Blank

R Blank is the founder of Healthier Tech and the host of “The Healthier Tech Podcast”, available iTunes, Spotify and all major podcasting platforms.

R has a long background in technology. Previously, R ran a software engineering firm in Los Angeles, producing enterprise-level solutions for blue chip clients including Medtronic, Apple, NBC, Toyota, Disney, Microsoft, the NFL, Ford, IKEA and Mattel.

In the past, he served on the faculty at the University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering where he taught software engineering, as well as the University of California, Santa Cruz.

He has spoken at technology conferences around the world, including in the US, Canada, New Zealand and the Netherlands, and he is the co-author of “AdvancED Flex Development” from Apress.

He has an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management and received his bachelor’s degree, with honors, from Columbia University. He has also studied at Cambridge University in the UK; the University of Salamanca in Spain; and the Institute of Foreign Languages in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.

Connect with R on LinkedIn.

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