Jay Shetty

Jay Shetty

Author Jay Shetty aims to elevate us from the negativity, anxiety, and hopelessness of today’s world in his book THINK LIKE A MONK: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Every Day, to be published by Simon and Schuster on April 14. Drawing on both Jay’s experience as a monk in a Hindu ashram and his post-monk life as an influential thinker and spiritual guide, Think Like a Monk distills monk wisdom into practical, everyday steps anyone can take to live a less anxious, more meaningful life. How can we transform our experience of life today? Jay says, “When I trained as a monk, I found that monks are able to remain centered and calm amid all the chaos that life throws at us. Monks are the absolute experts in mastering their minds. I wrote THINK LIKE A MONK in order to help everyone access the same mindset, the same thinking patterns, the same processes that help monks find peace, balance, and purpose.” Like his monk teachers, Jay draws from the Bhagavad Gita, a sacred Indian text based on the Upanishads, writings from around 800-400 BCE. In a world where people are constantly looking for answers, Jay believes the wisdom for how to find peace and purpose has been here all along. *** Born in north London in 1987, Jay and his sister were raised in a middle-class Indian family. Until the age of 14, Jay did well in school, stayed out of trouble and tried his best to live up to his parents’ high expectations. But he was a shy, introverted young boy who was bullied for being overweight and a little nerdy. When he started secondary school, things changed. He began playing soccer and rugby, became more popular, and started mixing with the wrong crowd. Jay’s thrill-seeking ventures got him suspended from school more than once as he tried to find his identity. By the time he got to college at Cass Business School in London in 2007, Jay had shifted his curiosity in more productive directions. He was reading autobiographies of everyone from Malcolm X to David Beckham, driven to understand the roots of success and making a difference in the world. Still, when a friend invited him to hear a monk give a talk, he agreed to go only if his friend would join him at a club afterward. That night, the monk, Gauranga Das, spoke about the principle of self-sacrifice. He talked about how people should plant trees under whose shade they do not plan to sit. This was a transformative moment for Jay. He’d been focused on the success of people who’d gone from nothing to something—rags-to-riches stories—but this man had done the opposite. And yet he appeared joyous, confident, and at peace. “He was saying that the greatest thing you can do with your talents and your skills is to use them in the service of others,” Shetty, now 32, told People magazine. For Jay, this was a completely new idea of success. In the community where Jay grew up, it was expected that he would become one of three things: a doctor, a lawyer, or a failure. When he headed to India to study with monks, his family was convinced he had chosen option three. After graduating from college in 2010 with a 1 st class Bachelor of Science degree with Honors in Behavioral Science, Jay traded his suits for robes, shaved his head, and moved to the ashram, where he slept on the floor and lived out of a gym locker. Half the day was spent on personal growth, meditating for hours and studying ancient scriptures. The rest of the time was spent helping others. In the course of his studies, Jay was amazed to observe that the wisdom of the monks was as relevant today as it was when it was first put in writing over 3000 years ago. Then, after three years as a monk in ashrams in London and Mumbai, one of his teachers told him that he would have more impact on the world if he left the monk’s path to share his experience and wisdom with others. This advice was crushing—Jay thought he was going to be a monk for the rest of his life. In debt, with no employable skills on his resume, he moved back home to north London with his parents. “Everything I'd learned was tested in that moment,” Jay says of the transition. “I had to figure out how to put everything I'd learned into practice in the real world.” Shetty reconnected with old school friends—many working for some of the world’s largest corporations—who were experiencing tremendous stress, pressure, and unhappiness, and they invited Shetty to coach them on well-being, purpose, and mindfulness. Jay says, “Very quickly I realized that a big part of my passion and purpose is to serve and give the wisdom I’ve learned with others. I started small. For almost a decade I shared my thoughts on psychology, spirituality, philosophy, and behavioral science at universities, local events, and in small groups in London. Three years ago I moved to New York, then Los Angeles, and began to present the wisdom and lessons I had learned from my amazing mentors and coaches online through video. My intention was to share wisdom with more people so they would see there were other people out there like them, and it would make a difference. And it did.”  *** Since launching his video channel in 2016, Jay has produced over 400 videos, which have amassed more than 6.5 billion views and gained over 34 million followers globally. In 2017, he was named in the Forbes magazine 30-under-30 for being a game-changer in the world of media. In 2018, he had the #1 video on Facebook with over 360 million views. Jay was the cover of the November 2019 issue of Adweek and was a People Magazine “one to watch” in December 2019. On his podcast, On Purpose, every Monday Jay conducts an hour long interview with a different inspirational guest. Past guests include Kobe Bryant, Jada Pinkett Smith, Russel Brand, Novak Djokovic, Khloe Kardashian, and Ray Dalio. Every Friday Jay gives his own guidance on a topic such as procrastination, confidence, or decision-making. The podcast, launched in 2019, received 52 million audio downloads in its first year and over ten million views in podcast videos. It won that year’s Shorty Award for Health and Wellness. iTunes named On Purpose in their Top New Podcast’s of 2019 and consistently rank Jay as the #1 Health Podcast. Spotify named Jay the #1 Podcast in India. Jay’s message has resonated with companies such as Google, L’Oreal, Facebook, Coca Cola, HSBC, EY, Microsoft and Accenture, who have invited him to lead seminars and deliver keynotes on finding your purpose in the workplace, well-being for the future, and digital media strategy.. He’s become so much of a cultural phenomenon that he was even asked to portray a version of himself in the “Bad Boys For Life” trailer with Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. 2020 will bring Jay’s message to a larger audience than ever with the publication of THINK LIKE A MONK. In the book, Jay draws deeply from ancient wisdom, modern social science, and his own rich experiences in the ashram to articulate a journey similar to the one he took. He guides people step-by-step through the process of adapting to the monk mindset, first by letting go—a cleansing to make space for growth; then by growing—reshaping your life to make decisions with intention, purpose and confidence; and finally by giving—looking beyond yourself to deepen gratitude and relationships. He says, “People need to go through experiences to learn, so the book is full of practical exercises, activities, and experiments. Everything in this book is something one can actually do in their own time at home, whether in the back of a car, on a commute, walking the dog, or cooking.” Along the way, Jay proves that everyone can—and should—think like a monk. Simon & Schuster will publish the book in the US and Canada, and it will be published in more than 30 countries worldwide. Simon & Schuster VP and Executive Editor Eamon Dolan says, “Nobody makes the timeless feel more timely than Jay does. He makes ancient wisdom, which often comes across as abstract, so clear, so inspiring, and so practical.” Jay lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Radhi Devlukia Shetty, a plant-based dietitian and Ayurvedic medicine enthusiast, to whom the book is dedicated. Jay enjoys listening to Drake at the gym and nature sounds while meditating. He’s a Manchester United fan and really admired Cristiano Ronaldo’s work ethic and determination on the pitch. Jay and Radhi love eating at plant-based restaurants, visiting spas, and spending time outdoors cycling and in escape rooms. “Jay Shetty shows you step by step how Self Power emerges when you shift your identity from self image to self esteem. This book could change your life and move you from the hypnosis of social conditioning to being the  creative architect of your life journey.” — Deepak Chopra “Grab this book, find a comfortable chair, and let Jay Shetty take you on a life-changing journey. A gifted teacher, Jay guides us with warmth and clarity on a path to greater joy and purpose in living, offering wisdom that we can put into practice right now.  You will want to share it with everyone you love.” —Robert Waldinger, MD Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School Director, Harvard Study of Adult Development Sensei and Priest, Boundless Way Zen
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