Listen to my latest podcast episode:

TMHS 769: The Surprising Truth About Menopause & Lifestyle Changes for Menopause Symptoms – with Dr. Lisa Mosconi

TMHS 246: How to Create Prosperity with Dr. Pedram Shojai

What does prosperity mean to you? For many of us, when we hear the word prosperity, we tend to think in terms of finances… but it is really so much more than that.

William Shakespeare said, “Prosperity’s the very bond of love.” It’s what holds us together. Prosperity is the glue that enables us to grow and evolve on so many different levels. And a little secret to remember is that prosperity is developed from the inside out and from the outside in.

As you’ll discover today, the prosperity of our planet and our communities has a huge impact on your own personal prosperity. Plus, you’ll get to see how simple changes in your mindset and personal choices can deeply impact the rest of the world in a real way.

New York Times bestselling author and filmmaker Dr. Pedram Shojai is here to shed some light on the dark places in our lives, and help lift us to a new level of prosperity. It’s literally a guarantee if you take action on what you learn today. The power is in your hands to affect change in the world in more ways than you know. So, tune in, take good notes, and enjoy!

In this episode you’ll discover:

  • What literally creates every cell in your body (something we overlook all the time!).
  • How a type of fungus is helping to deal with one of the world’s largest pollution problems.
  • Why using film is a powerful, and necessary means to eliminate some of our toughest problems.
  • How popular media is preying on our perceived weaknesses.
  • Why where you choose to bank can help solve some of our environmental and social issues.
  • How the work you do can be undermining your health.
  • What it means to adjust your daily burn-rate.
  • How conscious companies that are bought by traditional big businesses start to “infect their hosts”.
  • How organic gardening can actually help alleviate our global warming crisis.
  • Why we’re constantly trading time, money and energy in our lives.
  • Why fair-trade, organic brands currently have a shelf space disadvantage.
  • What prosperity really means.
  • What important questions you need to ask yourself when creating a life of prosperity.
  • Why everything you do has a wake behind it.
  • How to start moving past scarcity consciousness.
  • How connecting to your “why” gives you a whole new level of commitment and execution.



Items mentioned in this episode include:

Thank you so much for checking out this episode of The Model Health Show. If you haven’t done so already, please take a minute and leave a quick rating and review of the show on Apple Podcast by clicking on the link below. It will help us to keep delivering life-changing information for you every week!


Shawn Stevenson: Welcome to The Model Health Show. This is fitness and nutrition expert, Shawn Stevenson, and I'm so grateful for you tuning in with me today. Have you ever thought about where health really comes from? Where does our food really come from? You know what's so interesting when we think about all these different vitamins, and minerals, and things that we need to create great health within our bodies? All of it comes from the earth. All of it comes from the planet. Every cell that you see when you look in the mirror, every single inch of your body is the result of something that came from this planet. It's profound when you really think about it, and the reality is today that the health of our planet is very different, and the health of our planet is in jeopardy. And there are many things that we just kind of bypass; we don't really look at today because we're so focused on the bottom line and our own lives, you know? Like we've all got problems, we've all got challenges that we're trying to make it through, and that we're trying to figure out. But at the same time, we're not going to have very much to figure out if our planet is not here for us, and we're not all here thriving. And that's what today is really about; looking at the bigger picture. Time to zoom out a little bit, get a meta perspective, and then zoom back in and look at how we can improve our own personal lives, the lives of our family, the lives of our community, and the world at large. And to do that, I've got the very best person in the world. This guy, he's the very first four time guest on The Model Health Show, and for that to be something, it's because he is an absolutely exceptional amazing human being. And he won't tell you that, he won't tell you how amazing he is, but I will tell you. You know he'll just brush it off, 'Oh I'm just a guy.' But he is one of the most incredible people that I know, and he's doing some really profound things, and using a media that so many people in our space that are passionate about health and wellness are not using because it's a big deal. It's a big deal and you're going to find out what that is today as well. And so you know how synchronicity works, right? You know some random thing might happen that would seem totally unconnected, but it's connected, right? Maybe you're thinking about somebody at the exact moment that they're sending you a text message, right? This just happened to me the other day. I thought I've got to send this guy a text to ask him about this show release, and he was at that same exact moment posting on Instagram a photo of us together. It was just like, 'What? How in the-?' He's on the other side of the country, how is that even possible? At that time he just popped right in my head while I was in the gym, I was just finishing my workout. It's crazy stuff, right? And you know we've broken down the science on why some of this is actually happening, and different things like string theory, and all this stuff out there, and looking at quantum physics. But the bottom line is synchronicity is very powerful, and I've been thinking a lot about our guest today, and the mission that he's on, and helping us to improve the health of our planet and ourselves. And so another really interesting synchronicity that happened just this morning was with my son, Braden. And he was having his breakfast, and he's notorious for getting up while he's eating to come and talk to you eye to eye. Like, 'Bro, I'm just five feet from you, just talk to me,' right? No, but he gets up from- after having a bite, he'll get up and come look you in the eye, and he'll talk to you. So many times we'll be like, 'Braden, just go sit down, man. We can still talk, go sit down.' But he got up today and he came over to me, and I was doing a little bit of work, and of course I was just compelled to listen to him. He looked at me in my eyes and he told me that, 'You know, Dad? You know at school we learned that people who smoke, it can really hurt them very badly.' And he mentioned a family member who is an adult who he saw them smoking, and I was just kind of hurt. I was a little heartbroken because he felt bad about it because he didn't know what it was until that moment. And I knew that this person knows not to do this around my son, and it was just really tough to even hear, but he was concerned about them and he was like, 'It hurts them, and also we can't be around it too because the smoke, even if we're not doing it, it can hurt us.' And my son Braden, he just turned six years old, he's in kindergarten, and he's just having these revelations and he's teaching me something. He really feels like he's teaching me something. And he also told me that, 'You know Dad? You know what else? When we throw trash out the window, if we litter, then we are hurting our planet and we're going to make our planet sick, and we need to help our planet so it doesn't be sick.' He said, 'And it doesn't be sick.' And so I was like, 'That's so powerful, buddy.' And I started to talk to him a little bit about recycling, and some of the things we do, and he was just like, 'Yeah I know all that stuff.' It was just really profound and it starts when we're young. When we instill it in our children, this is how we really affect change in the world. And something I'm very passionate about myself is all the struggles that we're seeing today in our communities, and the violence, and the discord, and the lack of compassion. A lot of this starts as a result of how we're raised, and how we're treated, and how we're loved, and how we're taught about life, and about connection, and about interaction. And so I'm very passionate about this subject because it's a part of my mission and part of the reason why I do what I do so we can help each other to be healthier, and also to have that trickle down to our children. So again, this is why I'm very excited about our guest today and having this conversation because I think it's going to affect big time change in your life personally, and also again, in the lives of our families, and our world at large. But really quickly, something that is very fascinating that's affecting our world at large are funguses, alright? Fungi. I'm not talking about you being a fun guy, you probably are a fun guy or a fun girl, I'm talking about fungi. When you think about fungi, maybe you might think of mushrooms, but there are many different categories, alright? Mushrooms are just one type of fungi. All fungi are not mushrooms, but all mushrooms are not fungi, alright? Let that sink in for a moment. Let that sink in. Now there's a type of fungi that actually decompose synthetic pollutants that are really causing some big problems in our world today. If you think about pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, we know that those are a big issue, right? Those are things that we want to do our best to avoid, you know? The suffix 'cide' means to kill, right? They're either neurogenic or estrogenic and they bioaccumulate in our tissues. But there are some that have actually been banned, and this is like we're talking- DDT for example. This was created like over 100 years ago, and it was banned about 40 years ago. It was banned because of all of the science coming out showing that it has a big influence on creating Alzheimer's disease, and several other illnesses as well. And the science was just too big to ignore, so this compound got banned. Here's the issue, even today people get tested, they take blood samples, urine samples, and they find traces of DDT. How is that possible? Right? Over 40 years later it's still in our environment. It's still in our bodies, and this is because that product for example has a half life- just a very, very long half life. Let me put it like that, that it sticks around in the environment for a long time. But a certain type of fungi can actually clean that stuff up, and it's been found to do that as well as several other venomous agents. Now that's one type of fungi. A different type of fungi that you definitely need to be employing are the medicinal mushrooms. And so for me even today, I had this incredible chaga and lion's mane coffee. Incredible stuff. Incredible stuff from Four Sigmatic. And the reason that I do this is that it just works. And another one of my favorites is rishi, and as you know, me being somebody who wrote a book- an international bestselling book on sleep health, this really matters to me a lot. And this is why I love rishi, which is another really powerful medicinal mushroom. And so this was a study published in the journal 'Pharmacology, Biochemistry, and Behavior,' that found that the renowned medicinal mushroom rishi was able to significantly decrease sleep latency. So that means you fall asleep faster when you have rishi. You increase your overall sleep time. This was found clinically. It also increases your non-REM deep sleep and your light sleep time as well. All of that- and this was in a very distinguished journal. This was 'Pharmacology, Biochemistry, and Behavior.' They're looking at- they're trying to promote drug studies, alright? But they found that rishi was so exceptional in the way that it influenced a positive benefit in the human body that they had to publish this study and let the information get out there. But you won't hear this. You hear about the new drug that we have because the big drug companies, you know they can create commercials that come on when you're trying to watch Scandal or whatever the case might be, you know? And here's the real deal; this is without side effects. And this is just one of the incredible mushroom elixirs that Four Sigmatic has, and I want you to head over to and you're going to get 15% off all of their mushroom coffees, their mushroom hot cocoas, their mushroom elixirs, alright? Head over there, check them out. It's 15% off, alright? Head over there, check them out. And now let's get to the iTunes review of the week. ITunes: Another five star review titled 'Illuminating' by NoWay1234. 'I can't say enough good things about this podcast. Shawn has the most eloquent way in which he educates his audience, breaks down complicated information, and shines the light on health and wellness. Thank you for helping me learn, seek, and strive for more.' Shawn Stevenson: Wow, thank you so much for leaving that review for me. I truly, truly, truly do appreciate that. That means so much. And guys, thank you for leaving these review over in iTunes. If you've yet to leave a review, please pop over there now. You can pause this and actually come back, alright? I'm here on demand. Pop over there and leave me a review for the show. It does mean so very much, and again I appreciate it immensely. And now on that note, let's get to our special guest and topic of the day. Our guest today is Pedram Shojai, OMD, and he is a man of many titles. He's the Founder and CEO of, the editor of 'Be More Magazine,' the author of the New York Times bestseller, 'The Urban Monk,' one of my favorite books, and 'Rise and Shine.' And he's the producer and director of the movie Vitality, and that's one of the first ways that I was introduced to him. The executive producer and writer for the film Origins, and the host of two weekly video podcast series, The Urban Monk Podcast and The Health Bridge. He's also got recent projects that I've had the opportunity to check out, which you guys are going to learn about very soon, and these are launching right now. Prosperity and also a new book called 'The Art of Stopping Time. Sounds really cool, right? And in his spare time, this is his spare time, Taoist priest, doctor of oriental medicine, kung fu world traveler, fierce Global Green warrior, and avid backpacker. And he's also a Qigong master, and it's something that we've talked about as well. He's just old school Jedi biohacker working to preserve our natural world and wake us up to our full potential, and I'm very grateful to have my friend back on the show with me, the one and only Dr. Pedram Shojai. Welcome to the show, man. Dr. Pedram Shojai: Hey man, great to be back. Great to see you. Shawn Stevenson: Same here, same here. So you've got another movie. Another movie. Why, man? Why do you do this? Dr. Pedram Shojai: Yeah I can't stop, man. I got to this point in my life where- you know, look we've done okay in life, right? I made a couple movies, written a couple books, and you know you could move off to some self-congratulatory conscious community somewhere and hide from all the world's problems, and pretend everything is okay because you're around a circle of friends. And then I realized that these problems would wash up on the beach of wherever I was, and my kids would have to deal with them, and they'll be ten times bigger. And so there's a certain time in a man's life where you have to decide, 'Look, what's the right thing to do here?' And the right thing was to draw my sword, right? And you know, it's about doing everything we can to turn things around within our lifetimes, within this generation, to just change the dream. Because right now the trance that everyone is under is just getting us to walk off a cliff, and it doesn't have to be that way. And so I had to roll up my sleeves and get back in it. Shawn Stevenson: Yeah, oh my goodness. And your sword of choice is filmmaking, it's one of them, and I'm really curious man, because you have a lot of different avenues for you to be able to share your information. You know, you've got one of the top health sites in the world, one of the top podcasts, you're a New York Times bestselling author. Why do you feel drawn to making film? Why do you think this is important media to utilize right now? Dr. Pedram Shojai: You know, I didn't know anything about film. I was a doctor guy and then I got pulled into it because I realized we were losing the propaganda war, right? Like I was working the MASH unit dealing with bloody, mangled bodies in the form of chronic disease every day, and no matter how hard I worked, and how much effort I put into it, people would just keep coming in faster than I could fix them. And so I realized I've got to negotiate peace. And so you turn on the TV, you know it's all about like, 'Hey your life sucks. Buy this drug.' Or 'You don't feel well, take this drug.' And it's all just this mass brainwashing propaganda vehicle that's all based on leveraging us on our desires and our perceived weakness to get us to make flash impulse decisions right now in the moment that may or may not be best for us and are certainly not proving to be best for the planet. And so you know what? I just had to jump in and be like, 'Film and TV are the visual medium through which people are ingesting information the most, and film is a powerful way.' If a picture is worth 1,000 words then a moving picture is probably worth double or triple that, right? And so it's about capturing story and really relating to the people who are like, 'Yeah, you know what? What is this? Like this doesn't work. What are we doing?' I found film to be just a scalable solution that works really well to change people's minds, because their minds had been made up for them on things that they haven't really thought through. So I'm not trying to tell them what to think, I'm just showing them how other people are doing things and they're like, 'Whoa, man I didn't know that was a possibility. I'm in.' Shawn Stevenson: Right, exactly. And that's exactly how I felt after watching Prosperity. You know, I got the honor of getting this advanced screening and I was just really blown away, and the feeling that I got. Because you know, again like you said, it's the biggest medium out there. People are watching either re-runs of Seinfeld all the way to Game of Thrones, and you know, you get the feels. You know? You get a certain feeling tone from everything that you consume with this media. But when I finished watching Prosperity, I felt so good. I felt optimistic, I felt empowered, I felt like I can actually do something to affect change in this other domain that I'd never even considered. And how you pulled everything back to my life as well, and making it more visceral for people, I thought it was incredible. So let's talk a little bit about this movie, Prosperity. So give people a brief synopsis of the movie, and what you learned while making this film. Dr. Pedram Shojai: Yeah, well I'll start by saying I learned everything while making it because I started with just one big question, right? I'm not an economist, I'm not a money guy, I'm a priest doctor guy, right? And so you know, I went in with the central question saying, 'Look if indeed we can vote with our dollars, and that would make a difference, what would that look like? Who's doing stuff in this space that's interesting? Who do I need to talk to? What do I need to look at?' And so I just kind of went on a journey with the founders of Whole Foods, The Container Store, all the kind of big conscious capital companies. But then just a bunch of like awesome people doing cool things in the corner of the world, right? And really found like inspiring stories about how you can use business as a force for good, really learn what business was kind of originally set up for, where we kind of took some of our wrong turns, and how we can fundamentally change this right now. And the change is already happening, it's just most people I talk to on the street have no idea. No idea that like if- let's just say if you disagree with like the prison industrial complex, you might want to know that the top five big banks, especially like Wells Fargo, invest their money in that. Shawn Stevenson: Wow. Dr. Pedram Shojai: So you know, there's this modern day slavery happening right here under our noses, and if your money's at Wells Fargo, well congratulations, you're supporting that. Right? And so there are so many wonderful opportunities to now switch to these conscious banks that are FDIC insured, that are doing the right thing, that are putting their money with the good guys, that are betting on a better future, and like that's a simple swap. Right? I get the same benefits and I'm now no longer funding the building of a Death Star. Shawn Stevenson: Right, exactly. Exactly. I saw our video tech in here, Shoe, light up when you said Death Star. He's a big Star Wars fan. So here's the thing, guys. Again bringing this back to our health and our well-being. It's being truly healthy today, it's not just about being physically fit. It's not just about being disease free. It's also being financially fit. It's being fit and healthy in your relationships. And I argue this all the time that your relationships are the most influential thing on your health period. You know, your spiritual health. All of these things come together to create true happiness, to create true health, and also sustainability of that health. And our external environment is really a representation of our internal environment I feel. And I got to see some real profound images in your film that just- again, a lot of us just don't get to see. We're checking out the flashy news, and not the stuff that's just slowly creeping up on us as problems. And so one of those things was this crazy amount of garbage that's showing up in our oceans. And to see that on the shores of some- what we would consider to be pristine beautiful places in the world, was really eye-opening. So what brought you to head out there where they have the coconuts, and the cacao, and those kinds of things? Dr. Pedram Shojai: Well one of my friends has been in this space for awhile, and she's been really working on this thing called supply chain. I'm like, 'What is that?' It's just like look, you know what? Most people in Panama or Guatemala, some young man, he's thinking to himself, 'I want my local community to get decimated because what I really want to do is come become like a refugee. Climb over a wall and then become Pedram's gardener.' Right? Like that's not some sort of aspirational dream. And so like this entire thing of like trying to blame people for poverty, and being in a bad- it's like what if we were to solve the problem of poverty at the place where it's happening, and do fair trade, and fix these things so that this guy can stay in his village, and like his kids could have a dad, and the family unit is there. And so my friend was already doing some of this work, and she was like, 'You know, you've got to come check this out.' Right? And I'm like, 'Alright well I'm in.' And so that was kind of the beginning of a journey where I'm like, 'Okay this is phenomenal. I love what you're doing,' and then a lot of things kind of came up during the movie where I'm like, 'These guys don't have like a trash thing, and so why don't we look at this a little differently?' And so just start solving problems in front of you, and I'm not going to blow kind of what happens in the movie, but you know we started working to find more and more solutions because it's like the American dream has done some wonderful things. And I'm not like an anti-capitalist, I actually became more capitalist through the film because I realized what money can do. We have all these weird judgments like, 'Money is evil, bad people want money, good people don't care, but good people sweat their bills all day,' right? And so it's like it really helped correct a lot of weird kind of mental trips in my own kind of like hippie DNA, if you will, about like what it really means. Because you use the term 'prosperity,' the whole point of the movie was to redefine that. Like my definition of 'prosperity' is time with my wife and kids, hiking with the dogs, right? Taking naps. Like you know, without that, like what the hell good is money for? Right? And so you start really looking at that, and questioning that, and talking to people who have questioned that and you're like, 'Wow this is all just an idea, and it's time to upgrade the idea, and this is how we do it.' Shawn Stevenson: Absolutely. And in the movie you also highlighted prosperity in the workplace, which might be a new concept for a lot of people. I know that I didn't have that when I was working at a casino when I was in college. And just seeing some of these examples, and I think that a big part of the reason you put this in the film was to give an example for other business, you know? To put it out there, to see like not only will your business make more money, but your employees will actually be happy and they'll do a better job. You know both things can happen simultaneously. And you mentioned The Container Store specifically. And seeing how happy and grateful those individuals are to show up at their job each day, and how that filters down into the company itself is just really remarkable. And I was just sharing this the other day because you think about one of the big problems today I think that a lot of people have is- especially when it comes to our health, and our wellbeing, our mental health, Pedram, and I know you've seen this. We might eat a great diet, we might exercise, do CrossFit five times a week, but then hate our job. Like hate it, and it's causing this huge stress in our lives, and not seeing that that's the reason that's causing these breakouts. That's the reason that's causing these adrenal issues, whatever the case might be. And a big issue I think is that we have this idea that at some point when I get a better job, then I'm going to change, I'm going to be happy. When the reality is I think you really need to reassess things now, and be happy and grateful for what you have, and so that you can bring that energy to the new thing. Because I don't think you're going to change when you get the new thing. And when you're feeling that way now, you can see more clearly the opportunities I think as well, and there are some great companies doing great work. Dr. Pedram Shojai: And you know, like I talk about this in my new book too. It's like you've got to adjust your daily burn rate, right? If you're like, 'Man I can't believe it's only Tuesday. I'm going to fall on my face and crash, or like drink myself into the sofa on the weekend,' then something's wrong with the way you're running your life every day, right? If you're going to work and you're miserable, that's a full third of your life. If you're sleeping eight hours a night like our good friend here recommends kind of thing, right? Then two thirds of your life is already spoken for between sleep and a life you hate. And then between traffic- you know what I mean? Between traffic and a couple meals, like you know, no wonder you've got migraines, right? No wonder things aren't working out. And so you know, there's a lot of opportunity, a lot of these companies are hiring, and a lot of times people are like stuck in jobs and it's like alright, here's how you Trojan Horse this stuff into your company. Like what I've seen over and over again- and like I said, I knew nothing going into this, so I went in with kind of like Zen empty mind kind of thing. What I've seen going into this is like everyone's like, 'Oh man, big bad companies are buying these good companies, and they're gobbling them up.' What we're- not all the time, but in a lot of these circumstances, it's like the DNA of the good company as it gets acquired starts to infect the host. And so you get these big- like Unilever, Procter & Gamble, and these companies that haven't stood for much for years all of a sudden starting to shift their DNA- even Campbell’s. They're all starting to change because they're- this is something that I didn't know going in too, is we are right now- right now in the midst of the greatest transfer of wealth in history between Baby Boomers, who are dying off, and their wives, and their millennial children. And women and millennials have a very, very different value set than the baby boomers before them, and they're saying, 'I don't want that. Like if this company sucks, I'm not buying their stuff. Or if this bank is like supporting the Dakota Pipeline, I'm out.' Right? And so all these companies are recognizing this and they're frantically scrambling to like get cool, and like be transparently cool, right? So that they're actually able to keep their customer base or they will go the way of the dodo bird. And so the thing that like really inspired me is like, 'Yo this is already happening, and it's happening right now, and the only thing that is keeping it from happening fast enough to scale so that we can hopefully get less Hurricane Irmas is people don't know about it, and that's why I'm in the film business. Shawn Stevenson: Oh yeah, man so powerful. So powerful. You know earlier when you were talking about just the even possibility of switching to a bank that's actually doing something positive with your money- because I don't think a lot of us even think about when- I know when I went and got my first bank card, and I was in college, I was thinking about, 'What is a bank going to do with my money?' Even if you've got $100 in the bank, that is part and parcel of investments that the banks are making. And this can be things that are good for the world or not good for the world. Good for people, not good for people. And today again, having these other options, which again I had no idea about, Pedram. Thank you for putting this into the film. It just feels better knowing that your money is doing some good when it's not being spent by you. So with that said, guys make sure to check out this film, and we've got some special access for you guys. Just head over to and you're going to get hooked up with some very special stuff from Pedram, so make sure to check that out. So another company that you kind of highlighted in the film was one of my favorite companies, like literally this morning I was digging into my huge container of coconut oil that saved me like $20.00 buying it from them, but Thrive Market. Because a big part of the reason a lot of people are saying, 'I can't buy healthier food. I can't buy healthier personal care products because it's more expensive.' They're eliminating that issue. And so what was the draw for you to include Thrive Market in the film? Dr. Pedram Shojai: You know these guys, I've had my eye on them for awhile, right? And you know, like I've met Gunnar, he's a good dude and I was just like, 'Look I love what you're doing, I'm passionate about what you're passionate about, that's great.' And you know, unlike a lot of people that are just talking out there, the dude went out and did it, right? And like created an unbelievably powerful scalable solution where they've brought down the price of organic, and they've offered access to organic foods to people that couldn't afford it and didn't have access to it in the past. And that's been one of the biggest stumbling blocks in scaling these solutions. You know, I know that the number one and number two ways of sequestering carbon are through tree canopy and soil sequestration, so organic farming will literally reverse global warming. Organic farming will help resolve the healthcare crisis, and these guys are like right in the crosshairs of being like, 'Look, we're going to get organic into houses all over the country, and we're going to create a system that's going to facilitate that in a profitable way, and we're going to use that money to help do more good in the world.' I'm like, 'Man these guys are heroes,' right? And so for me, I had to choose very early not to like be like, 'Oh look at these companies,' right? Because then I'm just like a shill, right? I'm not like taking sponsorship and being like this is an infomercial. So I'm like, 'How do I do this?' So it's not about rewarding the companies, it's about rewarding good behavior. Because people mess up, people do things wrong, people will take a wrong turn and come back and correct. But as a community, we could reward good behavior and be like, 'Yo that's cool.' You know what I mean? Like clap, clap, clap, you get my money, keep going. Show me more. That starts to drive the market, and that starts to drive behavior of all the other companies and everyone else in the supply chains. You know it's like we take our money out of the big banks who are investing in the prison industrial complex, then the money dries up, guess what? That gig is up. You know what? Those things- you stop watering weeds, they wither, right? So just water the plants you want to see in your garden, and that's a big piece of what I've realized. And Thrive, I mean these guys are doing amazing work. I really appreciate what they're doing, and I applaud it, right? And so that to me is worthy of being put onscreen. Shawn Stevenson: Absolutely, and these are one of those companies that Pedram mentioned that are doing great things, and they're hiring as well, and that we can be a part of. You know? Everybody out there that you want to do something in the health field, or just do something that really feels good, or to change your career, please keep your eye on the prize, you know? Keep your locus of focus on that because it is possible and there are more and more of these companies that are showing up that are doing things the right way. And even there's a possibility- I know people listening, they're going to be creators of those companies, you know? So wherever you lie on that spectrum, just know that there are options, and- because we tell ourselves that, 'This is what I have to do. You know, Shawn, this is the only option that I have. I've got three kids, I'm in school, and this is the only job that I can get.' And I know this because I was that person, you know? And what it was, was I felt so terrible because of the stress, because of the poor health that I couldn't act. Like I felt like I couldn't act to find that better employment, to change the direction of my life, and ultimately I got hit with something hard. Life made me listen. So you're probably- right now if you're in a space that you don't want to be, you're probably blocking somebody else's blessing who would be happy to have that position. So get yourself healthy, invest in great companies, invest in yourself, invest in great food, and that's going to be your way into the next level where you really want to be. Dr. Pedram Shojai: Yeah, and Trojan Horse it into your own company if you're stuck there for a minute. You know, where we work, I mean like for me I see time, money, and energy on a continuum and we'll trade one for the other all the time. And so a lot of us will trade our time for money, but so you're putting your time which is your heartbeats, your life force on this- like you're rowing on this boat, right? Like do you like where this boat is going? If not can you influence the direction, or do you need to start your own boat, or get on another one, right? And so if you don't do this, then you're miserable, and your life direction is the worst. So we've actually- I've spent the last four months putting together resources on all the tools that people can do. So it's one thing to just inspire and educate, that's cute, I'm done with that. Like I've created a battery of resources in amazing places to kind of pipe people into to be like, 'Look at this. Check out this toolkit. Like go. You know what? Like just get out of your own way, this is how you make a difference, and if you think that you're small, you've missed it. You're still in the trance. You are the center of the entire universe, and you need to step into your role as the hero you need to be for yourself and your family. And it's not that hard, it's one good decision that you make that then is followed by a series of further good decisions because it feels good to be doing the right thing.' Shawn Stevenson: I'm so hyped right now. I'm trying to contain this, Pedram. I don't want to run off the mic and just do something. Man, guys you've got to make sure to check out Prosperity. Again this is positive programming, but it also has that back end. Like he just said it. He's done with that, here's some inspiration temporarily, but here's actually a road map, and that's what he's providing as well. And so again, make sure to check out and of course we'll have everything linked up in the show notes for you guys too. But I want to jump back to Thrive Market really quickly because I think that one of the things that we don't tend to think about when we go to a traditional grocery store is like the shelf space, there's politics here. Right? There's money here, and the reality is right now a lot of the companies that are doing things right, that are creating healthy food don't have the budget to buy out General Mills' shelf space, right? This is like- it's not really a fair battle at the moment. So what does that do? Well that creates a situation where you don't see that many products that are better for you on store shelves in conventional stores, but you do see them in places like Whole Foods, but they cost more. They do tend to come at a premium. Thrive Market cuts out the middle man because you don't have to worry about the shelf space, alright? They're not making money by marking up the prices. They're getting it to you at wholesale prices, and so that's why I was able to get this huge thing of coconut oil- I literally would have spent $20.00 more on. And also, you know our personal care products, things like deodorant, laundry detergent without these toxic chemicals, and parabens, and all this stuff. You can get all of this stuff from Thrive Market, and guys you can get a thirty day free trial, and you get 25% off of your first purchase if you go to So make sure to check that out. It's Again, thirty day free trial, 25% off your first purchase, and you can see some of my favorite products there as well. There's like a list there of some of Shawn's favorite products, so you can check that out. I just talked about myself in like the first and third person. 'Hey, it's Shawn.' Dr. Pedram Shojai: Now you know you're a celebrity. Shawn Stevenson: It was an accident. It was an accident. So now, what can each of us do, Pedram? You know there's so much in the film that's kind of outlined for us to take action on, but right now, before we've even seen the film, what are some things we need to be paying attention to? Let me put it like that. What are some things we need to keep our eye on that are kind of hiding in plain sight? Dr. Pedram Shojai: Yeah, I mean it starts with when you roll out of bed in the morning. Look at your brand of toothpaste. Is this making the world better? Is this coming from ingredients that are healthy for you? And then just go downstairs. When you put on your coffee, is this shade grown? Is this coming from a fair trade circumstance? Is this something- is the growing of this coffee making someone's life better- you know, the person who's growing it? Or is it just kind of extracting value out of like the Congo or something, and getting me cheap coffee? And you start just thinking about these things all the way through. You know, when you pull out your credit card or your debit card, right? Who's brokering this money? Who represents where my money is sleeping? And then you know, every time I come to swipe my card I'm just like, 'First of all, do I need this thing,' right? Because you know, a lot of things we buy we don't need and they end up in landfills, and that's crap, and that's a big problem. But then look, if I do need this thing, who am I buying it from? Like whose family do I want to support here? Like how do I influence the direction of the world by giving my money to people that I agree with and definitely taking my money out of the hands of people I disagree with, right? And we don't think about those things, and because of that, we have the world that we have, right? So those are just some core things, but it really- you know again, I think people are really hung up on money so they end up in bad places with money. They end up in a lot of debt, they end up- like money becomes a stressor, and so the one thing I learned through all this man, is just like you know money makes wonderful things happen. Like you know, it cost me over a million dollars of my own money to make this film. I couldn't have done it without money, right? And because of it, I really- I'm not someone's puppet, I got to do my own film, and be journalistic and clear on all of it, and I'm going to make impact in the world in a way that I can feel good about, right? And so you know, I just think everyone- we just need to like huddle around money because it's either like you're a Wall Street greedy tycoon, or you don't touch money because you're spiritual. You know what I mean? Like in all this kind of weird dichotomy, it's not that, right? Like we've got to take money back because the good people of the world are disempowered, and the good people of the world aren't- you know because everyone's like, 'Well what am I going to do? Everything's broken.' You're like, 'Yeah but the guys that you disagree with can afford lobbyists and have already bought your government.' So there's just a lot around that, and I don't want to get too heavy into it, but you know it's every little decision I make every single day makes a profound difference all the way through. It's kind of like the if a butterfly starts flapping its wings right here, does that turn into like a huge storm like 100 miles away eventually because of like the pickup there? And so you know, like everyone thinks that they're just a little drop but they don't realize that the raging river is right behind them. Shawn Stevenson: Oh man. You know what, Pedram? You said, 'I don't want to get too deep into it,' but I do, bro. I want to get deep into this. Dr. Pedram Shojai: Bro, I've been living it, let's go. Shawn Stevenson: The name of the movie is Prosperity, you know? And I think that there's stigma, even when we hear prosperity. It's like, 'Well that's not for me.' You know, so what does prosperity mean? Let's start there. Dr. Pedram Shojai: My better question is to you, what does prosperity mean to you? Shawn Stevenson: Exactly. Dr. Pedram Shojai: It changes, man. Like for me, again it's time hiking with the dogs, it's time with my family. Yeah it's having money, but is it just having money? Of course not, what the hell am I going to do with that? Right? You can't take it with you. So for me, prosperity personally is the ability to have the money to do what I want to do, to create vehicles and avenues to help right wrongs and change things- problems that I see in the world, to come up with scalable solutions. Like there's no reason that within our lifetime we can't harness effectively the energy of the sun to the point where we don't need to burn another fossil fuel. So what's in the way? Let's go get it. Right? There's no reason why we should be producing consumables in plastics that have cancer-like effects that we're consuming and getting ourselves sick and choking out our oceans. So what do we need to do? Let's go. Let's go get it. Right? And so these are all ideas, but because people are so distracted by football, the Kardashians, and you know the puppet show up in Washington, they just get distracted. People care more about whether Jon Snow is going to sleep with Dany than they do about what's up in the oceans, right? Yeah and so for me, prosperity is about stepping in to be- look I'll give you a little back story. I was a Taoist monk for years, and I went- I shifted from being an Ascetic, which means I was shaving my head before it was an option, right? Not an option. You know, shaving my head and living up in the mountains kind of thing to taking on a vow as a householder, and it was a very different thing, right? A householder- I have a wife and kids, I've got dogs, I've got a big business, I've got all this stuff, I've got bills, man. You know? And so how do you live in the world and not run from the world and be a righteous human being? And the question is you are responsible for your wake. Everything that I do has a wake behind it, right? And so am I making the world a better place with every step that I take? Am I a part of something good, or am I contributing to something bad? That is my responsibility as a person who lives here on the planet, and it's every single one of ours, right? And when we wake up to that, everything changes, right? Like the democracy in America is predicated on an enlightened citizenry. Like these dudes were like, 'Alright this works if everyone knows what's going on, and like has a dog in the race, and is basically voting based on like what's up.' Now people are just- we get TV stars becoming president because it's a popularity contest, and it's just like slogans, and a lot of not well thought through dialogue on either side, right? Like I'm not a red team / blue team guy, I'm a wake up guy, right? Like we need to wake up and take control because Washington ain't doing crap. And so I've seen with my own eyes how we can change everything by directing where our money goes, and directing where our energy goes, and all that is just theatre, right? And so the real scalable solution lies in everything that we do every day, the choices we make. And so waking up to that, that to me is prosperity. Once I can kind of get my own act together, then I can start having a positive footprint on the planet in a way that will help millions and millions of people, and you know then I have to face this other thing which is like, 'Who the hell do I think I am to think that big?' Shawn Stevenson: Exactly. Dr. Pedram Shojai: And if you see a problem in front of you, it's yours to solve. Go get it.' Right? Go get it. If something is bothering you, and you're waiting for someone else to fix it, you've missed the point. That's your fight man, pick it up. Right? Pick it up and then you'll find hundreds of thousands of other well-intentioned people that are like, 'Yeah, bro. Awesome. I'm with you. I'll support you. I'm doing this, how can I help you?' Like it becomes this unbelievable collaborative environment of well-intentioned people helping. Because here's the big thing about prosperity that I really need to impart, is what's happening is everyone says there's this little pie and everyone's fighting over these little slices of pie, and it's like this scarcity consciousness of like, 'There's not enough water, there's not enough food, there's not enough any of this stuff,' right? What if it was about generating value for humanity, and instead of slicing up a small pie, just increasing the size of the pie and the share for everybody? What if we were to be able to feed the world so people aren't starving, and aren't in destitute poverty, so they're not driven to be neo-Nazis, or ISIS, or any of that crap because the root of all of it is just like absolute squalor and poverty? These are the guys that get brainwashed. What if, what if, what if, right? And it all- like it's just this flip in my head about what prosperity really is, and how living in scarcity is a contracting force that then makes us galvanized around ideology that's hateful, right? What if everyone was cool, everyone was okay, we got to like do art, and go hiking, and like do wonderful things on the planet? Why not? Shawn Stevenson: Oh my goodness, man. This is why I love you. Let me just make this clear. I just recently was talking about this, and I never shared this before. But you know, a big part of change, a big part of taking the mechanics of being healthy for example, which are simple; eat some good food, move a little bit, get some sleep. The mechanics are simple, but why it's so difficult is because of our reason why. You know? And so for me, why I get up in the morning, why I'm so motivated to do this work, whether somebody's watching or not, you know I'm on the grind, is because I know deeply, and I just feel that I'm alive at this time for this reason; hurt people hurt people. And many of the things you just mentioned that are going on, and how we treat each other, I promise we're much less likely to be compassionate in a situation where compassion is required if we feel terrible. You know if we're hung over, if we're hurting, or if we're sleep deprived, or we're dealing with a migraine headache. Whatever the case might be, our judgment is going to be off. And the engineer here in the studio, he just actually shared a story that just yesterday he was at a city in our area called Kirkwood, and there was a little bit of a protest going on for Black Lives Matter, and he saw this transpire right before his eyes. There was a truck, a big white truck was like revving the engine and barreling down on this crowd of people, driving straight towards them. Dr. Pedram Shojai: Whoa. Shawn Stevenson: And he heard a glass crack, he thought somebody got hit, but luckily everybody was okay. And he- the person pushed through, whoever that was, and the police surrounded them because the police were already there kind of protecting the protesters. And hearing that situation, immediately for me it's like a big trigger because I know that that's why I'm doing what I'm doing. In some form or fashion it's to help aid in that situation. You know so anyways, the guy got arrested or whatever the case might be, but- and everybody's okay, but these types of things are happening more and more today, you know? These types of things have been happening for a long time, but everybody today is a reporter, so everybody can pull out their phone and they can capture this data. But again, that's why I do what I do, is like everybody- and why I'm sharing this is that get tied to your mission why, and make it deeper than just your little life because that's how you're going to show up and start doing the things that you're really capable of. And Pedram said you see a problem in front of you, it's your problem. Pick it up. If you don't have the energy, if you don't have the wherewithal and the strength within yourself and your own soul to step up to the plate, then it's going to be a lot harder to do so. You know? It's just a theory. But man, thank you so much for sharing that. It's very powerful. Dr. Pedram Shojai: Quick note on that is my kung fu grand master, old man, passed recently but used to always say, 'First help yourself, then help the world.' And I always thought that that was really kind of selfish, until I realized that look, if I can't like have the energy, and the vitality, and the wherewithal to know who I am, what I like, what I want, and have cellular energy to actually like do something other than just like try to detoxify and digest a cheese burrito, I'm useless. Right? And so you know, it really helped reorient me on my definition of prosperity. Look I just did- I'm 42 years old and I was like, 'I'm not going into dad bod.' I just did a back flip. You know what I mean? Like I just did a back flip in front of my whole audience and I was just like, 'Look this is my work. Like what's my next thing?' It's like you stay healthy, you stay full of life, you stay vibrantly charged because then that passion and purpose has a vehicle to work through and then you start doing things that matter, right? Because look, we're all going to die. Right? You know if you're on your death bed looking back, what are you going to regret not having done? What are you going to regret wasting your time doing? And now look back at what you're doing now and change things like today. Shawn Stevenson: Yes. Wow I'm just really blown away, man. And just grateful to have this conversation and for everybody to be a part of this conversation. And so I'm wondering what's next? What can people do to get involved, and to- with Prosperity, what can people do to help? Dr. Pedram Shojai: Man, first thing is see the movie. If you like the movie, share the movie. We've created a gazillion resources and tools for people to help. We've created like an online membership gate which is basically thousands and thousands of people coming together to vote. Basically I've negotiated lots of discounts and like education and stuff from a lot of these companies to really help people kind of find their way out. And we're helping this group called Pachamama lions which is the headwaters of the Amazon, about 100 million acres. It's like the foundation of all the life in the entire Amazon Basin that then becomes the weather systems that drive the planetary winds. And like if this ecosystem collapses, it's over. And so we're really stepping in to be like, 'Alright what are the global problems at scale that we can tackle as a community? Let's go. Let's go.' Right? And so you know, the first thing is just watch the movie, share the movie, get involved. We've got tons of resources. From there, I mean listen, if you're more into kind of figuring out how to get yourself going, my new book is called 'The Art of Stopping Time,' available everywhere. It's 100 day walk- like a chapter a day of like how to just think a little differently to transform your relationship with time, energy, and money really, to step into your power and really be the change agent you need to be in your own life first. Like everyone's like, 'Oh I've got to go fix the world.' It's like, 'There's a mess right there in my office. Let me start with that.' Right? Shawn Stevenson: Exactly. Dr. Pedram Shojai: And then keep going. Shawn Stevenson: Pedram- and guys, make sure to check out his book as well, because he writes like he talks. Very engaging, and very entertaining in the way that he delivers information, but it's filled with truth, it's filled with heart, and definitely make sure to check that out as well and we'll link everything up. Pedram, I just appreciate you man. You know, you're one of my favorite people. First four-time guest on the show. I know you didn't even know that, but incredible, man. Incredible. Dr. Pedram Shojai: I love it. Man, it's always an honor to hang with you. I'm obviously a big fan of your work, and love you man. Love you. I'm so happy that you're doing what you're doing for yourself, your family, and the world. And you know, the thing I really recognize in you is you're just a solid family man. With all the schedules, and all the crazy crap that comes with being the guy that you are, you're the dad and the husband that they deserve too, and that's not easy to do. So you know, that balance, I commend you on that. Shawn Stevenson: Man, thank you. That means everything to me. And I appreciate you, man. And again, we'll link everything up in the show notes for you guys, and make sure to check out the one and only Dr. Pedram Shojai. Thank you so much for joining me today, man. Dr. Pedram Shojai: It's been an honor, thank you. Shawn Stevenson: And everybody, thank you so much for tuning in to the show with me today. I hope you got a lot of value out of this. We went a lot of ground in a very small amount of time, and there's so much to think about, and there's also a lot to do. And it can be overwhelming for sure, but we have the capacity just taking one step at a time, solving one issue at a time. And I'm a big proponent of the fact that our challenges in life are not there to beat us down and to break us, they're there to make us stronger. And I think that also life tends to hand us bigger and bigger challenges when we're not stepping up and easing into the discomfort ourselves, and really utilizing our life energy to solve some of the issues that are in our way. And Pedram mentioned something powerful that we always have a wake behind us. There's always a flow, there's always something that's going on behind us as a result of what we've done, and to pay more attention to that. You know? Whether it's in a relationship context, you know the wake that we leave behind us, are people better having known you? Are people better having hung out with you and spent time with you? Or are you leaving people depleted, right? Thinking about that. And also the people that you're around as well, you know? How do you feel? Like what are they leaving in their wake for you? And honoring that, because you deserve to feel good. You deserve to feel empowered. You know, so these are things to think about. And also the choices that we make, and where we invest our money, the products that we buy. What's happening as a result of that? Have you thought about that before? You know, when you buy a certain company's laundry detergent, is that having a negative impact on our world? You know and just because we accept it as something that's normal, we need to start to pay attention to this stuff because it is showing up in other people's lives. This is actually hurting our planet right now, and it's hurting us. So it's time to wake up, it's time to start thinking differently, it's time to start acting differently, and it starts with small decisions. You know? Deciding to invest your money in companies that are having better business practices, fair trade, that are growing organic food. You know because sometimes, especially the way that the structure is set up currently, it does cost more to compete with companies that don't really care about those practices. But I promise you, and I'm seeing this more and more, and I know you are too, that these companies, these big international companies and brands are making big changes as well to their practices because people are demanding it. They're seeing that they're losing money. Their bottom line is being hurt because people are waking up and investing in companies that are doing the right thing, alright? So where you spend your dollars- you've probably heard this before, vote with your dollar, alright? You vote with your dollar. Where you spend your dollar does matter, and you matter, and I'm so grateful for you tuning in and sharing your time with me today, and I want you to- again I just want to reiterate one more thing, which is this life that you have right here, this opportunity is valuable. And whatever store you've been telling yourself here before this moment is just a story, and you can literally begin to write a new story starting today. You might be in a place of employment that you are not happy about. Well I promise you there is a solution. We have to stop telling ourselves the story that there is no other way, this is what I have to do, this is the only job that I can get, this is the only work that I can do. I promise you that there is always another way. There are many, many other ways, but it begins with telling yourself a different story and walking in that direction, taking a little bit of action, and when you do look for that place of right employment for yourself. Look towards companies that are doing good on the planet because this is something that's essential. Especially for somebody like you who actually cares about the bigger picture. That matters, and they're looking for good people, and paying a fair wage, you know? Giving you value for the value that you're investing in that company. And you know, I know also there's a lot of entrepreneurs out there that listen to the show, and the same thing here, you know? When you're looking at your investments, when you're looking at where you're doing your banking, when you're looking at where you're investing your dollar on a day-today basis, we need to start thinking about these things because that stuff is circulating somewhere. It's leaving a wake in your action in some form or fashion. So we all have the opportunity to kind of wake up and start making a little bit better decisions on how we're investing our time and our money and all of that boils down to one point. Again, you matter, your time matters, and this is your opportunity to do something great. To have, be, and do the things that you really want here on the planet. Alright? This is the time. Now again, thank you so much for tuning into the show today. If you enjoyed this episode, make sure to share it out with your friends on social media, and definitely check out Pedram's new movie Prosperity. And head over to to get the hookup. Alright guys, thank you so much again for tuning in. I truly, truly do appreciate you. Have a great one, take care, and I'll talk with you soon. And for more after the show, make sure to head over to That's where you can find all of the show notes, you can find transcriptions, videos for each episode, and if you've got a comment you can leave me a comment there as well. And please make sure to head over to iTunes and leave us a rating to let everybody know that the show is awesome, and I appreciate that so much. And take care, I promise to keep giving you more powerful, empowering, great content to help you transform your life. Thanks for tuning in.

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  1. I often let my intuition guide my podcast selection. Today it took me back in the archives to this gem. To quote you, Shawn, I had “truth bumps” the entire episode! So much goodness, I will definitely need to listen to it again. Keep up the great work. The world needs this content.

    1. This is everything!! Always follow your intuition Pam (: So happy we’re here together! Hope you and your family are staying safe.

  2. Thanks so much to you both and to all the people who helped put this episode out. It’s inspired me, deepest gratitude – jimmy


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