Episode 139 // Energetic Boundaries

August 29, 2017

As a creative entrepreneur, it’s especially important to take care of your energetic boundaries to put your best work into your business. So we’re talking about what causes energetic drains, how to put up and maintain energetic boundaries, the 40 hour work week, and work/life priorities.

Learn More about the Topics Discussed in this Episode
This Episode Brought to You By:
"A lot of taking care of your energetic boundaries is letting go of the fear of missing out."
- Kathleen Shannon

Discussed in this Episode

  • Where we pick up energy
  • Being energetically aware of the people close to you
  • How to let go of negative energy
  • The 40 hour work week
  • Work/life priorities

Resources

More from Kathleen

Braid Creative

More from Emily

Almanac Supply Co.

Transcript

Kathleen Shannon 0:02
Hello, and welcome to being boss,

Emily Thompson 0:04
a podcast for creative entrepreneurs. I'm Emily Thompson.

Unknown Speaker 0:08
And I'm Kathleen Shannon. Hey, bosses today, it's just me and Emily. Hey, Emily.

Unknown Speaker 0:18
Hi.

Kathleen Shannon 0:20
I'm excited to chat with you today because a couple of things came up this morning around energetic boundaries and 40 hour work weeks, and even just work life priorities. So I'm really excited to jam with you on those things. And for our listeners, you can find anything we reference on the show notes at WWW dot being boss club, or you can sign up for our newsletter to get our show notes straight to your inbox. Alright, you guys, millions of people are using fresh books and on average fresh books saves customers 16 hours a month. If you feel like you need more time and money freshbooks is the solution for you. If you're still using Word and Excel, and pen and paper or accounting software that isn't designed specifically for you, then getting things done quickly is probably harder than it needs to be. And you could be saving time if you use fresh books. Some of the powerful freshbooks features for small business owners include automated recurring invoices, it's easy to capture expenses, you can log every hour with time tracking, you can collaborate with contractors, and you can pull easy to understand reports. Try fresh books cloud accounting for free by going to fresh books comm slash being boss and enter being boss in the How did you hear about that section.

Emily Thompson 1:48
I love that this morning, we got on a phone call together after not having really had time to chat and like a week or two and we got on with a purpose in mind. We had a meeting to make a thing and it took us like 45 minutes start making the thing.

Kathleen Shannon 2:03
I know I mean, I think that's how you know that we're actually business besties because we're like, Okay, I've got to talk to you about all the things not only in our own businesses, but in the business that we've created together. That is being boss. And it felt really good. Yeah,

Emily Thompson 2:21
for sure. I mean, I think we're well I know, we're both so busy right now with all the things and I feel like I always feel like every phase of life that I'm in like it couldn't get any busier. And the universe is like, yeah,

Unknown Speaker 2:33
you just

Emily Thompson 2:35
wait and see. And then it just gets busier and busier. So it was good. Just getting the moment to chat this morning. And not surprising. The thing we ended up chatting about and that we decided to chat about now is energetic boundaries.

Kathleen Shannon 2:51
Okay, so lately on Monday mornings, I've been waking up feeling like it's Monday morning. And one of the things that we've done like a very tactical habit and routine that we've put in place is doing our weekly check in on Friday afternoons for the following week. And so that has actually helped quite a bit to know that that's already taken care of. I can just hit the gym and kind of ease into my week. But I was still feeling this certain amount of almost anxiety whenever it comes to Monday and my work week. And I guess anxieties the best way I can summon up, but it doesn't necessarily feel like mine. Now I'm not saying that there are demons attacking my soul, thank God. But that's kind of what it feels like.

Emily Thompson 3:38
Right? And it can feel that way sometimes. I mean, like also, let's just set the groundwork here, Kathleen and I both run two businesses on our own, like she has braid with her sister I have indie shop biography we have being bossed together. Like there's a lot of things that are happening add on top of that family and impending book launch that has this like not really working a ton right now. But just like energetically wrapped up in this really exciting but also sort of stressful thing. And then all the other like life parts that just comes with like being a person who wants to be cool and like hang out and enjoy your city and your friends and your family and all those things. So very baseline, Kathleen and I are pretty busy people.

Unknown Speaker 4:24
And on top of that,

Kathleen Shannon 4:26
on top of that energetic vampires, which could be the fourth is the news. The news exactly, like I read the news and I'm drained. I look at my Instagram feed and I'm drained and I even weeded out my Instagram feed so that it doesn't have a lot of business stuff in it. I wanted to make it more personal so it's just inspiring and things that I love looking at but I've noticed that I've been feeling a little bit drained lately and we can get a little woowoo So I was thinking I need to put up some energetic boundaries. I also happened to be listening to Jessica Moran's podcast, one part podcast. And she had a guest on there talking about energetic boundaries. And I was like, Yes, this is exactly what I need to be hearing right now. And I'm going to do it. So I was working out this morning, and on my drive home listening to this podcast, and I was about to go to the woman's website and download her meditation and I was like, whatever, I can take a shower, and do my own energetic meditation just intuitively. So I took a shower, I kind of imagined that I was washing the anxiety down the drain. So that was step one. Step two, after I took my shower, I laid down in savasana. So just on my back corpse pose very still. And I'm about to get real woowoo here. I just imagined my chakras lighting up from the base up if you guys don't know what chakras are, I don't even I'm not an expert in this, but they're just like kind of energy centers in your body. So let's say you have your guts and things. your chakras are like your energetic guts, right? Yeah.

Emily Thompson 6:10
Sure, I guess I never really thought of it like that. But it's a beautiful description.

Kathleen Shannon 6:14
So I imagined my chakras lighting up from the base all the way to the top of my head. And as I got through each chakra, I was thinking about different intentions. So for example, at my base chakra, I was saying things like, Okay, I'm rooted at my heart chakra, I was thinking, Okay, I'm open, my heart is open my throat chakra, I was thinking, I'm saying everything that I need to say. And I'm speaking truth, and nothing more, nothing less. So really just kind of going through my chakras and and setting intentions. And then I just imagined I was getting a vibrational tune up from the universe, like just high vibing. I even I was telling you this earlier, Emily, I imagined, literally cutting cords from like, anything that's pulling on my attention that doesn't need my attention. And then I imagined myself with a broom, sweeping those chords out of my space. And just getting clean, getting clear, high vibing. And it felt good, I have to say it was 10 minutes. And I feel like I've got some energetic boundaries up.

Emily Thompson 7:20
That is woowoo as fuck, and I love it. And I think that I think that people need to take a moment. And you know, just consider those things. More often, God knows I do fine. I'll do it later, too. Because I think we all need it. We're all picking up things all day, every day from all around us, whether it's, you know, you walking through your neighborhood and just sort of feeling drained by whatever you're seeing or scrolling through the news. And God forbid, if you're a Facebook user hanging out there all the time, you pick up these things. And if you want to be continuing on, in tip top shape, you have to look after your energy levels just as much as you do your physical body, or your mental ability, you have to keep your energy safe and secure as well. And that's something that sent me once I realized that, that that was something I needed to pay attention to the move was the moment I gained so much clarity about like my state of life and multiple phases of it to where I could see places in my life where if I had simply been more cognizant of picking up other people's energy or just like not keeping it super true to myself, my life probably would have been quite a bit more joyous.

Kathleen Shannon 8:39
I know, I was just talking to my sister last week about this as well. So my sister is my business partner at braid. And we've just brought on a third partner and then having been partners with you, Emily, I'm starting to realize like, I don't think other people are quite as sensitive as me and my sister are, I think that we're also incredibly sensitive, which also opens us up to picking up not only on each other's energy, but all the energy and so I can take things really personal and not even on a woowoo level, like on a very practical level. It makes it where if let's say you come to work in a bad mood, I might really take it personal and want to be like what did I do? Or like really getting in my head about it or thinking? Even if it wasn't about me, how can I fix it like just really wanting to fix it and then realizing, even for people I love so even for my business partners, even for my husband even for my own son just remembering that what is theirs is theirs. And what is mine is mine and I can be understanding I can be sympathetic. I can be an ear or shoulder to cry on, but I can't be the you know, solution to every single problem. Have you ever experienced anything like that? For sure. I

Emily Thompson 9:56
was just thinking on our walk this morning. I woke up who started out in a bad mood. I'm trying to remember who was Oh, it was probably me.

Kathleen Shannon 10:07
I don't think I've ever seen David in a bad mood. I mean, obviously, I'm not married to him. But

Emily Thompson 10:12
his moods for short. No. Okay. And so it started with yesterday, very flippantly. I told Lily, that maybe we can make pancakes for breakfast, which I should have known Not to mention it at all. Because as soon as I wake up this morning, she's asking for pancakes like I haven't even rolled out of bed yet. And wasn't the moods I was like, no, we're not doing pancakes or like, or something like I'll check anyway, it got asked me like two or three more times. And by the end of it, I was done hearing about pancakes, because we didn't have enough eggs to make pancakes. So I couldn't even have pancakes. Anyway, so we left the house to go for a walk. And I was a little annoyed because I was tired of hearing about pancakes. And it just reiterated the fact that I can't tell Lily, anything without her bugging the crap out of. It's just like parenting stuff, guys, very much. But moms will totally understand what I'm talking about. So we went on our walk. And I could tell Lily was in a crappy mood, we're just putting David in a crabby mood. And so this issue with the pancakes put us all in a bad mood. And as we're walking through getting really hot, and I remember thinking like, okay, I just need to let go of this pancake thing. Like, it all just needs to go. Because whenever you are living with someone, or if you are working with them, for sure, and you're spending that much time with them, even if you're not realizing it, you are becoming significantly more attuned to the own their own nuances and their energy levels. And even without realizing it, you are often picking them up, for example, like I don't see David as a very like, he's not very in tune with most people, like we can go into a party. And I can leave and have 18 million things to say about the people around me because I picked up all these things. And Dave was just talking about how good that cheese depth was, or whatever. Like he's just he's not super Cognizant, which is one of the reasons why I definitely love him, I love that he can stay out of it, or not pick it up. So he's not even someone who finds himself feeling super attuned to it, but I see him picking it up as well. So even if you're not aware of it, you do and with the people that you around, most often, you need to be even more aware of it and not that you need to fix things. Not that you need to, to change the way you are moving around people or talking to people. It's more of how you're handling yourself, and being more mindful of your own mood and energy levels when you're around people that you love, so that you're not picking up and throwing shit back at them or whatever it

Kathleen Shannon 12:36
may be. One of the tools that I learned whenever I was going through the Martha Beck coaching training was to ground and bubble. And so I'm sure that if you're listening this podcast, and you're any sort of healer, or you know, person that like works on bodies, or with energy, you probably already know all this stuff. But one of the things that she was teaching to the coaches in training is that it's really easy to pick up on your clients issues. And if you're a life coach for a living, you've got some clients with issues. So one of the tools that she was teaching the coaches was to ground and bubble. And so this is simply, you know, routing your energy into the earth and getting a little woowoo again, and imagining that you have a bubble around you, that is the space of kind of like your arm span. And imagining that nothing can get in or out of the bubble except you know, good vibes, love and peace and all those things. And so that not only are you not projecting, but you're not taking it on, which is kind of what I hear you saying to like you're accountable to what you're giving out. And you're also accountable to what you're receiving. Now, if I could just remember to ground in Bob. But this is like a really simple exercise. And I really like taking it a little bit further this morning into like a longer 10 minute meditation, and really thinking of it as like a vibrational tune up. I've even thought about getting acupuncture to just move some energy around or some to unblock some ci or whatever it is that I need to do. But then I didn't want to make it a thing I wanted to just say I can change my mind or I can change my mood or I can ground and bubble right now. So one of the things that you talked about Emily is on this walk kind of just letting it go like letting the pancakes go.

Unknown Speaker 14:22
And

Kathleen Shannon 14:23
how do you actually do that? Like how do you let it go? Is it just a mindset thing? Or do you have to attach any sort of visualization around it? Or what do you do

Emily Thompson 14:33
minds usually around just some deep breaths in like breathing it in and holding it and then breathing it out and letting it go if I can ever just attach to my breath and that way. I usually goes away pretty easily but like also super mindfully, like releasing your shoulders like I hold tension in my shoulders. This is also being very mindful of knowing where you hold tension. I hold it in my shoulders and my jaw and in my fist. So if you ever seen you bawling on my face You know, I'm getting mad, I'm really clenching or raising my eyebrows, I kind of just hold it all over, um, but very mindfully, putting my eyebrow down, releasing my shoulders, taking some deep breaths is how I can do it in the moment, especially if I'm just like walking around or whatever. But I also find one of my favorite little practices when I'm feeling a little, a little aloof, almost like not super connected to where I am right now. Because I've picked up so many things, or I'm super stressed out about something or all the things just to do list in general these days, is I like to go outside and walk around the grass barefoot for just a couple of minutes. That's my grounding exercise is actually like putting my feet on the ground. Can't do it too much, because we have lots of animals in the neighborhood. But I'll go find a safe patch of grass somewhere and just stand there and fill the grass on my feet. And brief basically, I think whenever you can get your head you can gain control of your head and put it where you want to put it wherever that may be for me in that moment. It is feet on the ground, then you gain all your perspective back.

Kathleen Shannon 16:17
Yeah, perspective is the name of the game like I anytime I find myself in a tizzy, I definitely think okay, gain perspective here. But coming back to energy, I saw this meme going around Instagram that I would like to share. And I thought it was a good one. So you guys may have seen this going around. But it basically says it's a list of how to protect your energy. So it says to protect my energy, it is okay to change my mind to protect my energy it is okay to cancel a commitment. It's okay to take a day off. It's okay to not answer that call. It's okay to not share myself. It's okay to do nothing. It's okay to be alone. It's okay to sleep in. It's okay to speak up. It's okay to move on. It's okay to let go. It's okay to change. So I actually had mixed feelings and write first read this. Have you seen this one floating around? I have? How did you feel about it? When were you first saw it?

Emily Thompson 17:11
indifferent? I didn't have feelings about it at all.

Kathleen Shannon 17:14
I think that this is how you are so good about protecting your energy is that you're not going to waste any energy thinking about things any deeper than they have to go

Emily Thompson 17:25
right? Maybe so maybe so I do remember seeing it. I don't remember having any feelings for it at all.

Unknown Speaker 17:31
I was like what?

Kathleen Shannon 17:33
You can't just cancel your commitment. But so I have a thing right now that I'm on the fence of canceling or not, it's actually a speaking gig. And I've been really thinking about this meme as far as like, okay to protect my energy, I can cancel this, but I'm having a really hard time actually doing it. And so I guess the point I wanted to bring up is that these means are great and all and they can feel like real empowering or maybe rile you up a little bit whenever you read them. But for me, I guess it comes down to and maybe this is why I got riled up is because I feel like I haven't been protecting my energy. And because I feel like I couldn't actually do half of the things on this list. Like I can't really sleep in because I have a kid I got to get dressed and send him to daycare, like i a lot of these are counterintuitive to just adulting. So half the time I'm like, come on Kathleen, put on your big girl pants and do the work. That's what we talked about when we're talking about doing the work. But if I am having an energy drain because of it, then Something's got to give right. And I think that's kind of that rock and that hard place that I've been at recently where I have commitments, I have obligations. I'm building a couple of businesses, I'm raising a family and I'm drained. But a lot of those things can't necessarily go until we realize that they can I guess, right

Emily Thompson 18:56
well knows what to say. I feel like the only one that you can't give up as motherhood, well, you can't just not be a mom one day and just that one day just to see what happens. Like that would not be good thing for anybody. It also makes me feel like the person who wrote that probably does not have kids at all, which is just knowing where things like that come from. Um, but I think you can cancel all the other things, I

Unknown Speaker 19:20
think and

Emily Thompson 19:21
think maybe, like one at a time.

Unknown Speaker 19:24
Like, right?

Emily Thompson 19:26
Maybe you can sleep in. But that's the day that you do show up for all your meetings except for that early win or whatever it may be like it hurts me, to me.

Kathleen Shannon 19:39
Like you can't pull those down all at the same time. Are you going to be left jobless, right homeless,

Emily Thompson 19:45
no friends or family to care for you and none of those things. Let's you can do all those things. But let's choose responsibility instead. At least like well measured and I don't know acted upon responsibly I, I have no problem canceling meetings when I have to, I have no problem now that Lily's older sleeping in if I want to all of those things by I had to do some fucking work to get me here. Like, I'm not some 22 year old who's just decided to call into work one day because you know, I had some weird Chinese food the night before, or whatever it may be like, I have responsibilities, I've worked my ass off to get to this point. So that when I want to sleep in I can and I'm not going to answer to anyone for it. I think those think those things taken out of context or not putting to the actual context of your life can be kind of dangerous, and probably super intimidating.

Kathleen Shannon 20:41
So I feel like if I had to rewrite this meme, it would be like to protect my energy. And I'm just going to list a few of the things I did this morning, and maybe a few of the things that you did this morning, I'm going to go for a walk to protect my energy, I'm going to stick my feet in the grass, to protect my energy, I'm going to have a conversation, an honest conversation with my business bestie about what our 2018 is going to look like. You know, so things like that, you know, whenever we talked about doing some of these things, we've had some very intentional conversations just in the past couple of weeks about how do we went 2018 to look, which is six months from recording this. And so we're looking really far out and doing the work that it will take to responsibly protect not just our energy, but our calendars and our schedules and our time and to avoid burnout in advance.

Unknown Speaker 21:32
Yeah, yeah, I

Emily Thompson 21:32
think that meme is very, like protect my energy right now. But what happens tomorrow when everyone's pissed at you, because you cancelled everything and didn't show up or bulldozed it down or whatever. I definitely like to adult in that way where I'm not only thinking about right now, but what's gonna happen next week as well.

Kathleen Shannon 21:52
Hey, bosses, there is a lot that you can do to DIY in your business. But I have to confess I totally set up my LLC all wrong whenever I started my business and I had to redo it not once, but twice. I'm not even sure exactly where I went wrong. So that's why I'm so excited to bring to you our sponsor incorporate calm. They're an amazing company that eliminates the guesswork and handles all of the paperwork and filings for you to set up an LLC corporation or even a nonprofit. They don't provide any legal or financial advice, but they are offering a free toolkit to eliminate the guesswork that includes a business plan template and incorporation guide. Go to incorporate comm slash being boss to get this guide today. So I will also share a couple of things that helped me feel energetically high vibing is this mantra that goes not my monkeys, not my circus, I think it's a like a Polish Hey, man,

Emily Thompson 22:52
I'm gonna Amen, your circus quote,

Kathleen Shannon 22:54
not my monkeys, not my circus. And so I've even said this to friends who have been you know, gossiping, even about another business or not that my friends gossip very much. So that's another thing that I do to keep my energy high is I don't really engage in gossip. Like I have enough of my own drama around being a mom and being a boss to deal with that. I don't know, I just don't have time for it. But um, but you know, whenever I find myself to, whenever I find myself caring about things that don't deserve my attention, that mantra always comes front of mind, not my monkeys, not my circus, I'll even do it energetically to protect myself whenever I feel like I need to solve all the problems for like all of our listeners, for example, like we get a lot of emails and you guys, those are great. I'm not saying not to email me, I do read them. But in order to not take it personally, I have to remember. Not my monkeys, not my circus. I'm rooting for your monkeys, and I'm rooting for your circus, but to protect my inner mon, not mine.

Emily Thompson 24:00
No, I think that one's really huge. And like, I also, we can even take that bigger picture and looking at the news. Like all of those things. I think you need to consume that stuff enough that you know what's happening in the world. But you also need to stay in your own lane and keep driving ahead with what it is that you're doing. And whenever you can put yourself into that place where not your monkeys not your surfing circus, it's a lot easier to find peace and you pay attention to your own circus making sure it's in tip top shape.

Kathleen Shannon 24:33
So speaking of all that, I need to stop swiping left on my iPhone, you know, or the little news feed comes Yes, that

Emily Thompson 24:40
is like my one thing as if I only have one thing but that is one of my things, for sure

Kathleen Shannon 24:48
why and then I'll read an article and then I want to refresh it and see what comes up next. Literally yesterday there was a news article underneath some ridiculous thing that Trump did. about somebody six pack abs And I was like, Okay, another thing I don't have time for anymore is reading a legend news about someone's six pack, I don't care.

Emily Thompson 25:08
I agree that one is still getting me. I removed all the other things from my phone, I do get my, The New York Times are one of those big news things, their morning recap or whatever email with all the news. So I get up and read that one today. I feel like if I can just do that and not swipe left, I'll be fine, except I'm still swiping left. But if that's the one thing I'm doing, I'm still putting my feet in the ground and breathing when I walk and not giving a shit about names. And I think I'm doing okay,

Kathleen Shannon 25:42
I think that's it too. So my friend Lindsey, who is a nutritionist and owns an amazing food bar in OKC, called nourish Anyway, she once told me this idea of stress, and that you can imagine that you have a bunch of like, let's say scientific vials of stress, right. And like one of the vials is the food that you're eating. And one of the vials is like environmental factors, and one of the vials is sweet.

Emily Thompson 26:09
Let's just talk about Antarctica for a second guys want to get some stress, dry iceberg the size of fucking Delaware,

Kathleen Shannon 26:17
I was talking about like toxic chemicals that

Emily Thompson 26:19
are assigned to an article stressing me out today.

Kathleen Shannon 26:22
So all the things that are stressful, right. And so if you are going to give a lot of attention to something that's particularly stressful, like work, or even exercise, or whatever, it's almost like you have to choose your vitals, and you're gonna have to take reserves from somewhere else in order to handle all the stress or else all of your vitals are going to overflow and you're going to be a mess. So I really loved it whenever she gave me that visual to really hang on to so then I know, okay, if I'm not getting great sleep, maybe don't read the news, maybe don't hit it so hard in the gym. If work is going to be particularly stressful. I need to make sure that I'm getting a lot of sleep. And then I'm eating really good food. I used to really compartmentalize all of the different stressors in my life. I'm thinking that they all just kind of lived on their own little island and not acknowledging that they all affect each other that stresses stress. So that's been really helpful for me.

Emily Thompson 27:19
That sounds like stress management.

Kathleen Shannon 27:22
managing stress at home.

Emily Thompson 27:25
Now I think that's perfect, and he is definitely what you have to do me you can't or you could put yourself in a bubble and like a real bubble. Do you ever watch the movie bubble? Boy? I looked ridiculous.

Kathleen Shannon 27:36
Was it john travolta like it's an old movie, right? I don't know if it was him. The boy I'm googling it right now the boy in the bubble,

Emily Thompson 27:45
that movie in the bubble? Who was that?

Kathleen Shannon 27:47
100% john travolta? Yes. Well, there

Emily Thompson 27:52
you go. You could do that if you'd like or you can, I don't know. be super mindful and discerning with the stress. But you will Oh, and I'm the same way like, super busy week, I'm going to be sleeping like a boss. If I know that I have, you don't know if Lily is sick, which happened last week, and I wasn't sleeping very well. Then I made sure that everything in my business was super just like going without me needing to super hard hammer, which is totally not what ended up happening. But ideally, that would happen. Because last week for the first time, and probably two and a half years. I worked a 40 hour week.

Kathleen Shannon 28:31
Okay, let's talk about this, like between our kids getting sick and having space in our schedules to accommodate our families and emergencies and things that happen along with 40 hour work weeks. All the things so right. I have been feeling a lot of guilt around not being able to handle a 40 Hour Workweek, like I can work a 40 Hour Work Week, but it leaves me toasted. So I was thinking recently, I used to work 40 to 50 hour work weeks whenever I worked at an advertising agency regularly and it was no big deal. In fact, it felt kind of easier than my 25 hour work weeks now. So I was like what gives? I have a few ideas, but I wanted to hear some of yours. Like do you have any theories on or maybe even just your general philosophy on your attitude around 40 hour work weeks? Yeah, I

Emily Thompson 29:27
mean, I definitely used to work 4050 maybe 60. I feel like maybe I never quite really did 60 because even in the beginning of my business when I was working more hours. At that point, I was more responsible for Lily and keeping her during the day. So it probably was like in all 150 hours

Unknown Speaker 29:45
a week of all the hours

Emily Thompson 29:48
in the week. Every hour was me busting my ass one way or the other. But I was probably working 4050 hours a week but since I've started tracking my time Which has been happening for a little over two years now. I have not clocked in a 40 hour week, I'll get close plenty of times 3839 hours Not really. 3038 3735 is an ongoing busy week for me if I'm working 35 hours and some shit has gone down, I've busted some things out. And I don't want to do that again, for sure. My goal is 25 to 30 on an average week, and I do that because the amount of shit that I get done, and then 25 hour week, rivals most people's 40 hour a week like I can get in and get so focused and get so much done that energetically. I've worked 40 plus hours.

Kathleen Shannon 30:43
Yes. So here are my thoughts on this. I think that the 40 Hour Workweek. One is it comes from like the Industrial Revolution, right? Where people needed to be on a factory line all together, working a certain amount of time. Someone arbitrarily agreed that 40 hours sounded good. So that's the first thing is acknowledging that it

Emily Thompson 31:04
wasn't arbitrarily it was profit. Right was the profit driven decision, I'm sure

Kathleen Shannon 31:10
so someone in charge decided that that was a good amount of time. I don't know the history of this, I could be totally off, I'm sure that there's a historian listening to this podcast, feel

Emily Thompson 31:20
free to shoot us an email in schools, we totally invite fight you,

Kathleen Shannon 31:23
I do want to know how the 40 Hour Workweek was invented. But the thing is, is that someone invented it, and that someone is not me that someone is long gone, someone who doesn't know you, or the work that you do, or what you're capable of doing in any amount of time, right. And so, but even if I was working in an advertising agency, there was a lot of like, in between space, there was just literally the ride in the elevator up to the office. And the conversation starts there. And maybe the conversation goes for about 15 more minutes about like, what did you do on the weekend. And sure we have some of that, but we don't have a lot of it. Because whenever we're getting together for a meeting, it's incredibly intentional. Also at the office space, you're getting up in using the restroom, you're maybe walking to lunch you're commuting to and from work, there are a lot of like in between filler moments that really add up. And I would guess it probably adds up to about three hours a day,

Emily Thompson 32:22
right. And then there's probably all that Facebook scrolling you guys are doing or listening to the being balls by gas, which we certainly don't hate at all. But there's a lot of things that you're doing in a 40 hour week that we're not doing in our 25 hour week, for sure.

Kathleen Shannon 32:37
So once I started working for myself when I was working in my space alone, so there have been times where I've shared a studio space with my sister. And I remember it got me on edge because it would interrupt my flow because we'd have to stop and talk about things. And sometimes we would get more stuff done in that way. Like I've even fantasize about moving to Chattanooga where you live, Emily. And if we could work together in the same space, we will get so much stuff done in 25 hours, but maybe in some ways we get less done because there will be probably more of that in between stuff. So I'm not saying that that in between chatter is good or bad. It's neither I'm just saying that I don't have it. And so if I'm spending all that time nose to the grindstone working for 40 hours, it's just enough to burn me out. Like I just don't have it in me.

Emily Thompson 33:25
Yeah, I completely agree. And it's really hard for me not even like I think I could pretty easily I can do 40 hours a week.

Kathleen Shannon 33:34
I know I was lonely. I don't have any days. And I do like I could sit down and work for 40 hours a week. It's just like not it's not sustainable over No,

Emily Thompson 33:42
no, no. So yeah, that's what I was with what I'm getting at to where my issue is not so much. 40 hours a week is working an eight hour work day, for over five days. That is so much like it's six hours, my quality of work is not that great. Like you don't want me to write you an email, you certainly do not want me to record a podcast because my words will not come out of my mouth. I am incapable of producing anything of quality after six hours, in which case, why try. So at about six hours I'm done for the day, which over the course of five days is only about 30 hours. And during the day, I may get up for like a 15 minute lunch, or a 22nd p run or whatever it may be, but I'm not chatting with anyone i'm not i'm not walking around, I'm not out. I'll have my water when I come in in the morning. I'm not going to get up and do much during the day. Those six hours that I'm working are nose to the grindstone, and I'm busting out so much shit you guys would freak out if you saw my to do list. And that's also come from years and years of practicing that kind of focus and productivity. So if I were to work 40 hours a week, which is totally what happened last week, I'd have to work all set Seven days, which is crazy. No one wants to work seven days a week. I don't want to work seven days a week. Um, but I had to do it just to get some things done that needed to get done. And I'll do it occasionally if I must. And again, 38 is pushing it for me. 40 is almost unheard of. I'll do it if I have to. But that always is a really good indication that I need to probably put up some better boundaries.

Unknown Speaker 35:28
Totally, or ask for help to protect your energy, you got to ask for help.

Emily Thompson 35:34
All the things. And that's totally what I did this week. So yesterday morning, with yesterday was Monday came in for our team meeting I had just worked, I actually think I worked like 10 straight days, like if I tack on the previous week and weekend as well. And I told them, I was like, guys just go look at my task list, like just go see that like 97 tasks, literally, I have to do this week. And they started picking them in terms of what they would do for me, which was fantastic. And I went ahead and a lot of more things for them as well, which helped me out a ton. So that was step number one is getting some of these things off my list, which is something I would have no problem delegating. But sometimes with that many tasks, you just need another set of eyes to go through to see what can be handed off. So I say all of that to say you don't have to work 40 hours. Actually, if you're really getting in and being productive and giving the couple of hours you give to your business, everything you have, you shouldn't work 40 hours, I don't think that that will behoove your business very much at all.

Kathleen Shannon 36:42
So I was kind of feeling like a spoiled brat millennial thinking that I shouldn't have to work 40 hours a week. But then I was reading through this habits and routines book of artists, I've mentioned it before, we'll be sure to include it in the show notes, I promise, I think it's literally called like habits of writers or something. Anyway, it shares the habits of artists and writers through the decades, I mean, going back into, I don't know, not the 1700s, probably into the 1800s. And a lot of them are chill, like they're easing into their morning with a couple cups of coffee, they're maybe writing for two hours, none of them were like I wake up at 5am I'm grinding it out for eight hours. And if you don't think I am, or if you're not doing the same, you're not a boss. Like there's like also no judgment around only writing for two to four hours a day and then being done with it. And these were prolific great writers.

Emily Thompson 37:42
Well, and I think that lends a ton to this idea that I really just had. And not not just it makes sense. Where creative work does require more energy. And I can like we can both attest to this while we were writing the book, we were probably clocking in less hours than we ever have. But what we were putting out was fantastic. I think we found that we could only write quality, writing about an hour and a half a day. That's it, after an hour and a half, all of that shit will get cut and re wet and rewritten the next day. So why bother doing it? Whenever you are doing that creative kind of work, you can't go at it for 40 hours, like a lot of that's going to be filled with nonsense, nonsense tasks that you probably don't need to do. That was one of my favorite things about writing the book was that we gave ourselves the space and permission to work less, but to make sure that the work that we were doing was more meaningful and impactful, because it was creative. And it took so much more of our energy to put out that little bit of stuff that we were doing every day.

Kathleen Shannon 38:51
I also want to share that the decision making that goes into running your own business is really exhausting too. And so I feel like every day I'm having to make some kind of tricky decisions like how should we negotiate the sponsor? Should we throw this thing in? Should we make this new thing? I mean, we're constantly trying to weigh these really big decisions, like big picture decisions with our kind of more quarterly tasks and to dues and goals. And so that takes a lot of energy to I can be floored after having a really amazing PR meeting with our book team. And just be like, Okay, I think I'm done for the day that like took it out. And it's not even a bad meeting. It's like a really good meeting that takes a lot of energy. So I think that that's another reason why 40 hours is so exhausting to me versus whenever I was a younger designer and I was just having to do production work. I remember one of my favorite things. It was almost like a meditation was in Photoshop, cutting out photos. Like cutting someone Out in the photo and just like pixel by pixel going in and cutting them out. And that's the kind of stuff that I just don't do anymore. And I could totally still do that 40

Emily Thompson 40:08
hours a week. Good, because I totally have that task for you. Are you serious? I totally do. I cannot wait. Which also brings us to a little announcement where redesigned to being both websites going to be amazing coming out beginning 2018. Okay, so

Kathleen Shannon 40:23
that leads me into kind of some work life priorities, because we are redesigning the website and you're like, Okay, if we hustle our asses off, and just throw down and do the work, we can get this done by October or something like that.

Emily Thompson 40:40
Right after I had already laid out the entire project for it to launch beginning of January. And so yeah, we were having a book meeting. And we were like, oh, wouldn't it be great if the new website was done earlier, when you started doing all these, like marketing, whatever things? And I was like, yeah, we can totally do that. Give me a minute to look at the calendar. And I did it. And it was totally feasible. But I felt like if I chose that, I would be very, like Fuck my life, basically, because that sort of project would have been so huge. I remember it was a Friday evening, I sent you this No, it wasn't, it was even a Saturday, guys, I don't work weekends very often, it does not happen. It's happened more lately than I would really like to admit. But I remember Saturday morning, I went to bed on Friday thinking about this website. And if we could do it, and woke up Saturday morning, I was like, I just have to get this out of my head into Kathleen. So I wrote Kathleen's little slack message and I was the K, here are options for the website. Either we do it, or we don't do it. Which one do you choose.

Kathleen Shannon 41:39
And then a Monday morning, I open up the slack messages. I haven't read any of these because good hashtag boundaries. I'm not looking at my slack on the weekend. And I mean, very rarely, like if you texted me and said, look at the slack I would write, but I would know that it's an emergency. So by Monday morning, I opened up my slack. And it says, nevermind, we're not doing it. I'd rather read to my kid in the morning, which I loved and appreciated seeing that so much. I think that, you know, I look to you and even to my sister as role models in how to do business. And it's one of those things where if you'd said, Okay, we're going to do this, I would I would get on that boat with you. And I would do it with you. But I also really didn't want to. And I think that that's kind of like one of those tricky things where even this morning having a conversation about what we can handle and what we can't is so important. Yeah, business partner, and you're feeling overwhelmed, talk to your business partner about it.

Emily Thompson 42:34
Right or for me and sort of coming to that decision on my own. It just spent it took me a weekend of just thinking about it, or thinking about what I wanted and what I didn't want and what I wanted to accomplish now and what could wait a minute, because what most of the things that you want to do right now can wait a minute, and we're all for launching before you're ready and doing the work and all the things. But I'm also really down for everyone sleeping really well at night, like I would rather you sleep really well than not. And that's really what it came down to is I spent the weekend thinking about what my life would be if we waited until January like we initially planned versus what my life would look like if we decided to launch it in the beginning of October. And I liked what my life would look like better if we waited until January. And part of that was familial, not even obligations, but things I wanted to do. And that doing a website now would mean or crunching it because we are doing the website. Now we're just doing it more slowly crunching it into that smaller timeline would mean me needing to come into work earlier, or stay later or work more weekends or whatever it was, though I'm totally down to hustling that out when I need to. And when I really want to. I'm not about hustling that out when there are other things I'd rather do more.

Kathleen Shannon 43:55
Yeah, totally, I think is really just looking at priority. So we have a lot of things that we really want to accomplish. And

Emily Thompson 44:02
we guys have no idea how many things can accomplish.

Kathleen Shannon 44:07
So on Friday, I even sent you a list of things. And I was like, okay, meditate on this. I actually really loved that you took the weekend to think about it. And it really prompted me to think about Okay, what are some things that I could really spend more time thinking about because I think that we get an idea in our heads and we start executing it on it immediately. And I think that it's brought us really far our podcast would not have the success that it had if we had not jumped on it and actually done it right. But now we have all these other things that we want to jump on and do and a couple of businesses and families and all the things that we've mentioned. So I basically made a list of here's all the ideas of this like multi media conglomerate that we want to tackle including products including monthly in person meetups, including a book tour in 2018, including a website redo there are a lot of things out podcasts like actually recording, we did the math the other day and how many podcasts we record in a year, including minisite

Emily Thompson 45:08
52 times two 104. Plus the 12 secret episodes is 116 116 episodes a year.

Kathleen Shannon 45:18
So that adds up. Yeah. And then how we actually make money, so the clubhouse and really even reprioritizing and re looking at that. So we really just started to list out all the things and we were able to cut a couple of them like, okay, we can't do these right now and getting really honest about what we can accomplish. And again, I just think that we set the bar really high for ourselves, and we can accomplish a lot. But just because we can does not mean that we should,

Emily Thompson 45:46
right at least not right now. Right here right now. Because that we certainly have years ahead of us to do things and we could and this also brings me to people like like Gary Vee, for example, like one of those just like all out hustle, do the thing. Don't have any regrets do do do and I totally like I super admire people who do that. I would still love talk to his wife,

Kathleen Shannon 46:09
I was about to say I want to know his wife and kids think about that. I

Emily Thompson 46:12
agree. But like total respect, totally love it. If that's for him. Absolutely. But it's not really for me. Not really not today, maybe like I go through the seasons of just doing shit. And this is also me saying this after working like more over the past month than I have in months. But I'm not in the mood to hustle harder. And whenever this project is done, I'm okay with like chilling for a minute. And I'll get to all the other things I want to do shortly, just not right now.

Kathleen Shannon 46:44
I think that though, if you look at the past two years, even though you're working harder right now than you have in a couple months, if you still look at the past couple years, we've worked really hard. Yeah, in a couple of years. Yes. And so for me, and we've accomplished a lot. And I've accomplished a lot of things that I thought would make me really happy. And like, for example, symmetric things, and it doesn't necessarily change the way I feel at the end of the day. And so I feel like through the hustle, I've been able to prove to myself that some things just don't matter as much as other things. And for me, I think that a lot of this, you know, coming back to energetic boundaries is letting go of the fear of missing out and letting go of the fear of missing out like, Okay, if we don't have a product line tomorrow, what does that mean for our brand? It doesn't mean anything refined.

Unknown Speaker 47:35
Right, and

Emily Thompson 47:36
it does come back to priorities. I think, you know, last year, I almost took a really big trip during the summer. And I remember making the decision to do or not to do that was like a four day like one of the most stressful four days of my life, like having this decision weighing on me, which sounds so dramatic, and it felt that dramatic, it really did. Um, and I remember whenever I finally made the decision, like I remember thinking, I hope I don't regret this in a year. And I'll tell ya, I don't, I haven't regretted it a single bit not taking this trip, and instead spending the summer with my family, which is what I we had already, like made a deal that we would do or whatever. Um, so. But I also think regret is a choice, which is this whole other like craziness, we could go down if we wanted to. But you choose what you regret and what you don't

Kathleen Shannon 48:29
I love that you said that I feel the same way. Like I could have plenty of regrets. Yeah, I just don't think about it. I feel like that actually, the past is one of those things that I'm pretty good about just kind of nodding on it.

Emily Thompson 48:43
I agree. I agree. And so yeah, I will choose to do things now. And I won't regret that choice later, there have been plenty of opportunities where sure, if I had bought that stock way back then or paid my student loans off earlier or whatever, like things would be different. But what good came from not doing those things. I think whenever you can focus on the good and not the bad, then regrets don't really happen. And I'll get to whatever. Oh, that's another thing I want to touch on real quick is this idea that what matters most will come back up. So let's say we shelf products now. But in six months, if we're supposed to have products, we'll have products and we'll have the space in which to do it is one of them is like if you love it, let it go sort of things. I don't mind doing that with ideas, or decisions in my business or whatever it may be. I'm completely fine with letting things go and focusing on rocking out what I'm doing now. And if it's meant to be it will be.

Kathleen Shannon 49:45
Yeah, I cannot agree more. I think that that's happened with a lot of things in our business, including the book for example, like we could have hustled

Emily Thompson 49:54
that out at year one. It would not be the book that it ended up being in year three, please

Kathleen Shannon 50:01
For sure. All right, well, I think that this is a good place to close the episode.

Emily Thompson 50:07
I agree this is a good one I like talking about about all of this stuff. Energetic boundaries are important as a business owner and as a creative and super important for a creative business owner. So think about how it is that you can protect your energy with habits or with boundaries, or whatever it may be so that you can put the energy you need to and do your creative work so that your business runs amazingly.

Kathleen Shannon 50:37
Thank you so much to our team and sponsors who make being boss possible, our sound engineer and web developer Corey winter. Our editorial director and content manager Caitlin brain, our community manager and social media director Sharon lukey. And are being countered David Austin, with support from braid creative and indicia biography,

Emily Thompson 50:55
do the work. Be boss, and we'll see you next week.