Give Forward and Change the World with Nate St. Pierre – Episode 96

March 5, 2014

We were grateful to have today’s guest join us at all for this special episode on “changing the world.” Nate St. Pierre, a fellow Milwaukeean and friend to both Phil and me, is one of the most introverted people we have featured on the show. As he reveals in today’s conversation, “When you believe in the mission and what you’re doing, that temporary discomfort is worth it because you’re helping others.” As lone entrepreneurs, we believe no one else gets what we’re going through. Changing the world? That’s not in store for people like us, right? We couldn’t be more wrong.

After watching today’s episode with Nate, I trust you will agree.

Watch the show (uncensored & unedited)

Listen to the podcast (coming soon)

Share Some Shut Up Love –> The world can be what you make of it. If you see something you don’t like, you can change it. – @NateStPierre #shutupshow  (click to tweet)

Fun Facts:

  • Nate St. Pierre builds stuff on the web to give back, inspire, and entertain.
  • Nate teaches you how to tell big stories and do big things, working with team members on real-world exercises to flex our muscles and see what we can do.
  • Nate’s my past and current projects focus on philanthropy and business.
  • Nate specializes in web marketing, consulting, and collaboration with talented people, both for fun and for profit.

  • Nate hails from Milwaukee, Wisconsin and commutes to Chicago as the Director of Communications of the largest medical fundraising site, GiveForward.

Defining Shut Up Moment:

The turning point for me was back when I was 30. I was the web team leader and a staff of six. I had three kids and doing good work. But I wanted to do something with my life that was better than what I was doing. I happened to go through this leadership training at work, investigating who you were and what you wanted to do. One question they gave me was a blank page and 20 minutes to write, “Next year, what will you do?”

I wrote, “Next year I want to change the world.” I didn’t know how but that’s what I wanted to do. I sat on that for three months and the point when I was serious, one of my team members wrote something that said “Believe in the power of taking yourself seriously.” I use that to this day because that was the moment I decided to take myself seriously about changing the world. I started this little tiny blog, ItStartsWith.us. It was about people changing the world, large and small, and making a difference. It was hard for me because I am a huge introvert.

It was scary because I never reached out or talked to people outside my introvert cave. Then I thought what if I turned my blog into a movement where people could help someone else for 15 minutes? I built a discussion forum. That little team of 18 people when it first started grew to 10,000 worldwide. I saw what could be and how people can be the people they want to be to make a difference and help others. I knew I could help them get there. I didn’t want to be the guy out in front. But no one else was going to do it. By doing this work, I could help the tens of thousands of people be who they want to be and touch millions of lives. That’s how it went. I’ve seen the results and it’s worth it for me to get past my anxiety and my fear and desire to be left alone because I see it can really change the world.

Shut Up Tips:

Be a good citizen of the world and steward of the talents you’ve been given. – Nate St. Pierre

The world can be what you make of it. If you see something you don’t like, you can change it. Yeah, it’s hard and it’s scary. You don’t always win but you can at least try. – Nate St. Pierre

I saw so much effort around “Causes” but there’s also a place where you have to stop complaining about things that other people are doing and stop lending so much of a voice to something that’s Internet pitchforks. – Nate St. Pierre

The same amount of energy you expend to be part of a large group yelling about something is the same energy you expend to do something positive in one person’s life. The rewards you get for that are a life changed. It’s so much more of a valuable use of your time. – Nate St. Pierre

You can make a difference. Your effort goes so much further when its personal. – Nate St. Pierre

It’s been amazing to see the transformation of this very quiet, very shy, very stressed person to someone who is still very quiet, very shy, very stressed but still capable of pushing through it and making a big difference. – Nate St. Pierre

Going out in public with people, even more than one or two people I know well, is very hard for me. Personally, processing one-on-one communication in the midst of all the chatter going on, I can’t focus. I get nervous. It’s really tough. But when you believe in the mission and what you’re doing, that temporary discomfort is worth it because you’re helping others. – Nate St. Pierre

I get nervous and sweaty palms even giving a meeting to my staff, it’s no different than giving a speech in front of 700 people, for me. – Nate St. Pierre

I always have this undercurrent of balancing this philanthropic work with making enough money to survive. My fear is always that I have to walk that line and not go too far toward the idealistic or fun stuff. – Nate St. Pierre

Nate Recommends:

Check out Nate’s world-changing projects: Love Drop was like an Extreme Home Makeover meets ItStartsWith.us, which resulted in over $90,000 worth of goods and services donated to help out families going through a financially hard time.

Find Nate:

If you’re a lone entrepreneur and you want to do something to make a difference, but not sure how, check out NatesTeam.com.