David Swain: How to step into change in life and career


“What’s the worst that can happen? We only have one life, you have to go for things...” David Swain

David Swain, former head of communications at Instagram and current CEO of athlete platform Prokit
David Swain: CEO and Co-Founder of Prokit

David Swain (@swain) is no stranger to making big changes and taking the “leap.” He shares his story with us during this insightful conversation, giving us a look inside the origins of his own drive and his ability to thoughtfully navigate change throughout his life and career.

Also available on all major podcast platforms. On Apple Podcasts.

From Small Town to Big Business, How David Swain Moves Through Change to Live a Life of No Regrets

How did a psychology and economics student become one of the early employees at Facebook and their Director of Technology Communications? How did David Swain decide to leave this position at one of the hottest companies in Silicon Valley to help grow another start up, now one of the most popular social media platforms in the world, as the Global Head of Communications at Instagram? You would think Dave would have settled at this point, so you can understand why I was eager to ask what fueled him, to at the peak of his career, leave, and make what was his biggest leap yet, becoming an entrepreneur as the CEO and Co-Founder of Prokit.

David Swain at the Broken Arrow Skyrace in 2018 in Squaw Valley, CA.

Wouldn’t we all love to cultivate the ability to know ourselves so well, that we trust our process and the feelings we’re experiencing, when we’re faced with a big life or career change? I know I would love to have this clarity and I was hungry to learn all about Dave’s process and his suggestions for listeners.

Change can feel painful, exciting, nerve racking, liberating or all of the above. One of those feelings may dominate for you while another may dominate for the next person. Your experiences in life, the mindset you possess and the skills you choose to cultivate to help you navigate through challenging and stressful times, will impact your experience with change. I’m very grateful for Dave’s insight into all of these areas and his guidance on how we can best prepare, without ever knowing all of the answers, to take that leap.

“If you need to get through things, often times for me it’s that walk or calling that friend or relative that knows me well. Definitely don’t try to go through those moments by yourself…” David Swain

Some of what we cover:

  • How Dave’s youth impacted his outlook on life
  • Having conversations with people and not going it alone.
  • How to learn what makes you tick.
  • Understanding your strengths.and how to maximize them.
  • Visualizing the type of career that’s a great fit for you.
  • How to change your outlook if you’re in a career rut.
  • The rationale on “enjoying the grind.”
  • The mindset of ‘having no regrets’.
David Swain skiing at Keefer Lake in British Columbia.
What’s the worst that can happen?

I took so much wisdom from this conversation and left very energized! David has so much practical insight to share from his many life and career experiences. I truly hope that you leave this podcast motivated to take agency over decisions you may be struggling with by implementing some of the techniques Dave suggests throughout.

Please share this episode with anyone you know who may need help navigating life and career changes (don’t we all!?). You can also read his article on Building a Meaningful Career that he wrote after leaving Instagram.

To learn more about David Swain or to connect with him online, please see the links below. Definitely check out Dave’s new entrepreneurial venture, Prokit! It’s free to join and a wonderful place to learn, share and become part of a community.

David Swain Prokit Page: https://theprokit.com/p/swain/

Prokit Join Today FREE: https://theprokit.com/

Common Threads Podcast: https://theprokit.com/collection/the-common-threads-on-apple-podcasts/ (also on all major podcast platforms)

Twitter: https://twitter.com/David_Swain

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

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

Subscribe to Imperfect Progress on Apple and follow me here on Prokit for updates on new episodes and please leave a review and comment below to help make this the best podcast possible for listeners. Thanks for listening!

Thank you to David Langstaff for the original music for the Imperfect Progress podcast.

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Anne Guzman

Sport scientist, sports nutritionist, content creator, former pro cyclist, life long learner. “Find a way to your dreams, even if it involves detours."
Running, Cycling, Triathlon, Track Cycling, Wrestling
Hamilton, ON

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