About Shawn Ellis

Helping Clients Create Amazing Events Since 1999 & Helping Busy Professionals Rise Up, Stand Strong, and Break Through No Matter the Circumstances

Inspirational Keynote Speaker Shawn Ellis

A Motivational Speaker for the Rest of Us—Sharing "Real World Compatible" Strategies for Resilience and Success

Since 1999, I’ve had the privilege of partnering with some of the world’s leading authorities in personal and professional development—people like Dr. Wayne Dyer, Marcus Buckingham, Marci Shimoff, Patrick Lencioni, Jon Gordon, and many more—to create amazing events for clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to leading industry associations to healthcare organizations and beyond. 

Those speakers taught me a lot, and naturally, I wanted to apply as much as I could to my own life and business… but then I hit a brick wall.  

It all started around 2009, when our business (like many) took a major hit from the recession. My income dropped over 50 percent—which was perfect timing, as our son was born a few months later. (You have to be able to laugh about these things!) 

A few years later, while still recovering from the recession, and now deep in debt, I became a single dad. Needless to say, things were more than a little overwhelming. And frankly, it was humiliating. “I shouldn’t be here,” I thought.

But it was during these years that I gained a valuable perspective on life and business. See, I had been studying motivation, leadership, and personal development since 1996, when I first wrote a paper titled “Motivating Your Workforce to Perform.” Then I found myself with a front row seat to the best thinking in motivation, sales, leadership, marketing, customer service, and other key business topics. Life was unfolding beautifully. But… what you learn in the “lecture” is never as powerful as what you learn in the “lab,” right? 

I realized that none of the “classroom lessons” mattered if I was on the ground, knocked down by a series of uppercuts and body blows from LIFE.

It was during this time that I discovered a very simple yet critical truth: 

The missing link between where you are and where you want to be is rarely more information. It’s implementation. Taking action. 

You have to do what you know. And again, you can’t do that when you’re laying on the ground.

You know what Rocky says, right? 

“It ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”—Rocky Balboa

What I discovered is that the #1 key to success is RESILIENCE… because it doesn’t matter how fired up you are, or how brilliant your strategies are, if you can’t rise up and stand strong in the face of whatever life and business throw your way. 

So how do you do that?

I’d love to show you, whether it’s as a coach, or speaking to your people at your next meeting or conference. But in short, here are a few lessons:

  1. You’ll never keep up by trying to “do more, faster.” If you feel like you’re moving at a frantic pace now, how on earth are you going to keep up as the pace continues to accelerate? The way you keep up is actually by slowing down, and focusing on one moment at a time. You don’t have to climb the entire mountain in a single leap!
  2. Do what you’re doing. We’re bombarded by endless distractions, “shiny things” that beg for our attention, and multiple priorities that (we think) we must juggle simultaneously. Your attention is the funnel through which all of your strengths, talents, skills, and experience flow, though. You can’t give 100% of yourself to 20 things at the same time. Those 20 things (or 20 people) just get 5% of your capabilities. Slow down, focus, and do what you’re doing right now. Give that one thing 100% of your attention, even if it’s just for the next 15 minutes. Then move on.
  3. Don’t believe everything you think! We have 60-70,000 thoughts a day, depending on which source you believe. (If you’re wondering how that’s possible… there’s one of your thoughts!) We mostly replay the same thoughts, or stories, over and over again. And most of them are negative. The world throws darts at us, and then we twist them and drive them in further to make the pain 10 times worse. If you’re going to think something, think positive!
  4. Take a time out to just be, and just breathe. You are not a machine. You can’t expend energy all day long. You must take time to recover, and studies have shown that recovery needs to happen about every 90 minutes, at least. That doesn’t mean you need to take a nap! Get up. Stretch your legs. Walk down the hall. Close your eyes and breathe for two minutes. Write down three things you’re grateful for. There are multiple ways to do it… but as I like to say, “You stop the work, or the work stops you.” (Seriously. In Japan they now have a word for death by overwork, or, working yourself to death: karoshi. Don’t do that!)

Those are just a few simple keys to cultivate resilience, and not only do they reduce stress and alleviate overwhelm, but they also lead to increased happiness, higher productivity, improved customer service, more effective leadership, and other benefits. You don’t have to take my word for it, though! Just ask companies like Google, Procter & Gamble, Aeta, Bose and other leading organizations that are implementing training programs that incorporate these principles.

Clearly, I’m not the only one who needs help keeping up with the increasing demands and complexity of life and work today, so I’m grateful for the opportunity to share what I’ve learned with others. It’s my missionto help people rise up, stand strong, and break through, no matter what kind of change, adversity, or uncertainty they may be facing.

Over the past six years, I’ve had the opportunity to share my “This Moment Matters” message with hundreds of professionals from companies such as Panera Bread, ING Americas, Ingredion, Marathon Oil, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Unisys Corp and many more. People have called the session “a breath of fresh air,” leaving feeling “refreshed” and “super focused.”

Is that what you want for yourself, or for your people?

Contact me today and let’s discuss the possibilities!

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