230: Creating Time—a Conversation With Vikki Louise
If you ever find yourself wishing you had more time, today’s episode is for you. Vikki Louise is a feminist time and rest coach as well as a close friend of ours.
You will discover:
- How to use time to accomplish what matters most to you
- Why resting is never a waste of time, despite how our culture continues to glorify hustle, long hours, and poor sleep
- Which common thoughts about time make you feel like you don't have enough
Learn more about Vikki and her work at VikkiLouise.com.
And to help you reach your next business goal free from burnout and overwhelm, we created the Grow Smooth course. It's the first self-paced course to help you master your inner game of leadership so you can make consistent progress towards your business goals. Learn more at besuperabound.com/grow.
Watch the video of the conversation below:
Erin Aquin 0:03
Okay, I am very excited, because I get to introduce two of my favorite people who actually can't believe you guys have never met. But actually, it kind of makes sense. So, today we're very excited to have Vicky on the podcast the time hacker herself. I met you, in Italy, we went on a retreat, a very intimate retreat with four or five other people. And I think you and I were the only two who had not met. And everyone I talked to about you was like, You're gonna love her. She's gonna be your new best friend. You have very similar ideologies, philosophies on life. Just get ready. And they were not wrong. So welcome to the show. Steve, this is Vikki.
Steve Haase 0:54
Nice to meet you, Vikki. We're excited to have you on the show today.
Vikki Louise 0:58
Thank you. I mean, it's not Italy, but it's so lovely to meet you. I was thinking when you said that, like don't all great love stories start in Italy. I love that our story started there.
Steve Haase 1:08
Where does our story find you today? Where are you talking to us from?
Vikki Louise 1:13
Steve Haase 1:15
Thought I detected a English accent there. Yes. We are in southern Ontario where it is ridiculously cold. But we are managing we are managing. We're gonna warm our hearts with the conversation today. Vikki, I want to dive right in. The people listening are business owners, they've got a lot on their plate, they've got a lot on the go. Give us the basics on how business owners can get more time in their day. Tell us about time hacking.
Vikki Louise 1:46
Yes, I mean, essentially, time hacking, where it came from was the idea that time management is outdated. And what time management actually does is it gives us a whole list of to do list items that are not growing our business that are not testing things in our business that are not adding value to our bottom line. And so time hacking was born off the idea. I mean, in my myself, I scaled my business very fast. And it just kind of struck me one day, but things don't take time. We spend our whole life being told things take time, time heals, time heals all wounds, like give things time. And it sounds so great in the moment, because there's nothing for us to do. But wait, but that's why so many of us are waiting on the things that maybe require us to step into something new or expose ourselves to failure or challenge, you know, the way that we've been doing things that might have been working up to a point. And that was basically the birth of like time packing the idea that instead of going straight forward, there's like a backdoor entrance and you know, creating a process around how we can do that together.
Erin Aquin 3:01
A wormhole if you will, wormhole. I was thinking about you a week or two ago, Vikki because I was working with a newer client and she was like, you're gonna probably be stuck with me forever, because I have so many things that I have to work on. And we were four or five sessions in and she was like, Yeah, I just changed that I confronted this person, I had this conversation. And I was like, yes, because change just takes readiness, not time. Yeah, it is not a thing like, like time. It takes time to like, heal, heal a physical wound on your body. It does not necessarily take time to change your story about something, change your mind about something, shift into a new way of doing things that's like an instantaneous decision you can make. And we've seen so many examples of that, you know, all of us or our coaches here on the podcast. We've seen so many examples of that happen in our world with our clients. But it's always interesting to me, I'll go to other events, other workshops with entrepreneurs and business owners who talk about time like their greatest adversary, it's the worst thing or it's the best thing. And they think like to scale I'm going to have to work so much harder. It's gonna take so much time to get where I want to be. And part of why I just love you is because you don't buy that for a second.
Vikki Louise 4:41
Yeah, and I think you just hit the nail on the head with the example of like, when we think time is going to be the thing that creates our results. We give things a lot more time. So that client of yours that was like I'm going to be with you forever and wonder where else that showed up in her business of like this is going to take a long time. So She's setting everything up in her business as a marathon versus what I teach my clients, which is to sprint and rest as a way to achieve more.
Steve Haase 5:11
Can you tell me about the sprint? How do you plan an effective sprint?
Vikki Louise 5:16
Yes, well, we can speak about planning afterwards.
But sprinting and resting is the idea of, you know, committing to do something for a certain amount of time. And then making sure that you start when you see well, and you rest. And so I had a client who is writing a book, and she was writing it in 15 minutes sprints. And I think so often, this client already knew this, because she's quite an advanced coach. But so often, when we think of sprinting and resting, we think, Oh, I'll sprint for an hour, and then rest for five minutes, like the Pomodoro method method. Whereas what works best for my clients is actually flipping that around, and sprinting with high intensity, that's what a sprint is. And then giving plenty of time to rest and recover afterwards. So it could be you know, something about like creating a new master class. Another phrase I say is things take as long as we let them. And it's not to say shorter is always better, but just owning that we are in control of that. But you know, if I say to myself, Oh, I'm going to produce this masterclass in a month, I can start you know, writing ideas and thinking about it if trying to get into set aside three hours every week to write emails and write this and write that. But now how I operate is like, I'm doing that work on masterclass the day before the master class, I know, I just don't need to be thinking about it. weeks in advance. I know that like, essentially, as you guys are business owners, and we are on a podcast right now, if you were asked certain questions on that topic of the master class, you would have answers, which tells me you don't need a long time to write it all out and plan it and all of that stuff, especially, you know, when we are more experienced business owners, and we've already done a master class or two.
Erin Aquin 7:06
Yeah, I'm, I'm very much with you on that. I think it's something I've had like a lot of trouble understanding, like, people love to think about things and like mull over decisions. And I don't know why it's some kind of like security blanket of some kind that I I mean, I'm just like, not wired that way. But you probably work with people who say no, no, for me to do high quality work. I have to think about it for four weeks, and I have to plan it all out. Yeah. So that's, it's, it's something I don't totally understand. So I'd be curious to know how what that looks like and how you help people who maybe weren't taught that. That's how you do things. Yeah. How you get them to shift your program. Yes. And I think I
Vikki Louise 8:00
want you to notice that I said, I still I like to do it the day before, because I do think my subconscious is doing some work for those few weeks. Once I've set the like topic agenda, it's like I start seeing things and getting ideas. And it just happens without efforts. But I would say a lot of people come to me wanting to finally figure out planning in a way that they can use it and they're like Vikki's gonna give me the perfect plans. And then we'll finally set up my calendar and then follow my calendar, even though I've never done it before, this is going to be the thing that color coding is going to be on point. And I come in and say like, you don't actually have to operate that way. And I just invite a different way, which is the root of everything I think we do as coaching, and particularly for my clients. It's like, how do you ask, and when do you ask questions of yourself? So for example, every week we have Monday and Friday questions, those Monday and Friday questions aren't asking you to write down everything you need to get done in the week, putting it into your calendar, guess how long it's going to take. What they are asking your brain to do is to prioritize on very few things. So none of that 20 things in a day stuff to set a criteria for success, which could be you know, what are three things or what are two results that you want to create this week? And then commit to one thing that you're going to do that you've been putting off for a while, because otherwise you never do those things? And then go to the place where it's already done and communicate with yourself. And the issue that people have with this at first is they're like, Well, what about all my other things that I need to do? But what this process does is it allows us to create success, and then to continue our week from a place of success. I was traditional, right? Like traditionally writing the long list means we never achieve success. We're always chasing we're always behind. But if we can come MIT to a few things, celebrate getting them done. And then it's kind of like optional, whether we continue or not. But we're not driving ourselves from this need to complete to do list to finally feel calm, once it's done, then we'll be less stressed. It's like, no, no, you've created success early on in your week. And then that success drives you. Really?
Steve Haase 10:24
What about when activities require other people? You're running a team, you've got your staff meetings, you're, you know, managing groups? How does time mastery come into play? In the inter subjective when you're when you're working with others?
Vikki Louise 10:43
Yes, it's so important that culture that we have around time, because I do see a lot of companies speaking about, you know, wanting to help people in this way. But like, at the top, it's like, the plan is there maybe the four day workweek or having less meetings, because the idea is there in theory, but the buy in isn't, it's like, our mindset around time is still? Well, I want to be able to email the people on my team at 9pm and get a response or I still want to be able to have everyone in the team in the meeting, even though there's three people that maybe like don't really need to be there. So it's really about and breaking away from this mindset that more time is better, and more people is better. And actually, more is better. And so really getting into this place of like, what if less is better? What if less people in that meeting is better? How could that work? Whatever less time on that meeting? Or what if a shorter deadline? How could all of those be better and then making decisions from them communicating and creating, this is required, especially with where the world is right now with work life and everything, creating safety and support and structure around that, because it is so different to how we've been traditionally trained to think about work.
Steve Haase 12:00
That's such a powerful insight, because culture does start from the top. And if the leader says we're doing a four day work week, but I need to know everything that everybody's doing, and I need everyone to be in all the meetings, and you know, you still have to do your regular workload than the four day workweek is just going to mean it's just going to be lip service, right? Because then people are going to be working on the weekends are going to be working late at night or 12 hour days. Yeah. Right, you've got a four day work week. But it's not actually instilling in the company the possibility that their stuff could move quickly that they can make decisions effectively, that they have the resources and trust that they need to to move quickly and take initiative, rather than always needing the check back, or Yeah, be involved in everybody else's business.
Vikki Louise 12:48
Yes, the check back, I think that's the big thing as well. And I've spoken to a lot of employees around this, the idea that if they're scared about their boss, or their partner, or whatever their reaction around their work, they want three people on their team to check it. I mean, it's such a waste of resource based off of like, not creating safety for them to communicate with their boss. So we see that kind of thing all the time, where there's like checking of work and layers added, not because it creates a better product, but because that's the way that we are trying to come for our own fears instead of I mean, you guys do lots of work on this, instead of changing our relationship with our fears and our emotions.
Steve Haase 13:32
And it's a fascinating thing, because what we're talking about is, you know, lack of time and 12 hour days, but at the root of it is trust, capability process, like none of those things require time. But time is kind of the knock on effects to not having that really strong foundation.
Vikki Louise 13:54
Yes, I think about like, the person who is avoiding doing the work that they don't think they're very good at, or submitting it to the person that they are afraid of getting the feedback from or afraid of letting down or having a chat or whatever, like we create so much wasted time or even dead time. That actually isn't going towards solving the problem at all.
Erin Aquin 14:20
Yeah, when that's happening in a, in a business with people, it reinforces the whole narrative that things take a lot of time. You know, I mean, in our company, it's, it's really just the two of us, and we have some contract folks that we work with. But we're, we're finishing a book or releasing a course. We're going on a three week vacation, and I'm like, Okay, well what I want to do is have the manuscript rough ready for the editor, and the course. Ready, like locked and loaded, ready for sale, and then I want to go on a three day vacation. And I remember when we kind of when Steven We were talking about this, we had the conversation of like, Is that realistic are we going to be are going to stay up till three in the morning writing, I'm like, typing words, does take minutes. But we're imagining because some writers will take five years to write a book, that you can't write a book, in a couple of months, you know, I have another friend who's a writer who can write 60,000 words in a day, she can write an entire rough draft of a book in one day. So it's, it's just a really interesting thing when you, which I think, Vikki, you do so well, when you reorient your belief, it really kind of comes down to like your belief about what time is and what it's for. Mm hmm. It can change everything about a business. But as you as you know, I know you're starting to work now with businesses and companies and actually help the leadership change the way that time is used within a company, which is very exciting. But I'm curious, how do you get that buy in from everybody, because I assume that when you're going into a company with 20, people, some people are going to be very tied to the calendar system and the 16 meetings and wanting things to take three months so that they can drag it out. And they don't have to get that feedback. So I'm curious how you shift or work with companies to kind of shift that that culture because I assume it's not that smooth, sometimes.
Vikki Louise 16:49
What I think I will say if calendaring is working for an individual, then that individual should continue doing what's working for them. So I'm not there to say, I know the best way that you should work, I'm simply there to say, if it's not working, if your employees are working, longer hours are burnt out, are unhappy, aren't generating the best ideas are feeling afraid, and things are taking longer than you want them to, then let's talk then let's shuffle things. And not everyone in the organization needs to adopt the same plan. That's kind of the beauty of time hacking versus time management is I'm not coming into an organization and saying, you know, everyone must time block in order to optimize your results and having like, you know, people that are neurodiverse, or, you know, just like a range of people like we have and saying, Well, you have to fit into this box. Otherwise, the whole thing is going to tumble like a Jenga. So I think that is a really helpful way to firstly, it's like just the universal truth that we're different. Secondly, I think when you are approaching teams and leaders, it creates room for dialogue and conversations and communication and involvement and participation. So it's never as coming in and being like everyone do this. It's more opening up conversations and dialogue, and communication that benefits like how teams work together, how we create safety for, you know, the kid that has a doctor's appointment at 10am and the person not being there, and also safety for really creative and out there ideas that maybe we end up deciding as stupid, but we still want to be opening up and expanding that arena. So I would say that's a huge part of it is informing and education and also collaboration. And I think traditionally, when we think about corporate or my past experience in corporate was very top down, you know, FaceTime is valued, we just we don't know how to measure employees. So we're just going to measure it by time because that's something that we can measure easily. And with time hacking, we're focusing on results. And it requires changing this like lazy way of measurement for just the greater benefit. And I think when people actually sit with the questions that we give them around, you know, how they're actually feeling about their work, how they're feeling about their capability, how they're feeling about this, their support. That's where you get the buy in for them to see like, oh, there's actual gaps, and what's possible when I fill them.
Steve Haase 19:20
That's brilliant. So I have a question because, like, our brains evolved in certain ways, right? We listen to Thinking Fast and Slow. Daniel Kahneman got the system one which is intuitive and kind of subconscious in the system to which is more logical and conscious, you're aware of your thinking there. And so much of system one is based on impressions over time. You mentioned FaceTime and so you think like your impression of a person, the halo effect, like all of these things are going to be happening by noticing somebody over time these have the deep impressions on us. Same thing with like learning a skill, right? Gaining. It's called muscle memory. But it's really like you're building the neural pathways over time. So there's all of these structures in the mind body, that happen because of time. And yet there are these possibilities to be more effective and, you know, bring more magic into your life through going with these. Like they're newer features of the human organism, right? It's like the the system to capacities. So how do you not short circuit the system one, but like, be aware of your biases towards the things that will just imprint on you over time and leap to the Magic Leap to a place that might not be as kind of default
Erin Aquin 20:48
for you? Yeah,
Vikki Louise 20:50
I mean, I'm going to call you both out a little bit lovingly. Because it's not the passing of time, right? So Erin said it about, even the wound is not the time that heals the wound. It's what happens in our body. That's why we can all heal at different rates. So time passes, but time is passive. So even with those imprints, it's like, what's the difference between the person like, we're joking that, you know, you guys know, I have a baby, and my dad loves tennis, we always used to like playing tennis. He's like, he's gonna be a tennis player. I'm like, You better get him started watching those tennis. You know, I didn't want to get upset. But it's totally. Exactly. Again, I'm watching the tennis games now. Because really, it's like the time can we pass it and say is first 10 years. But those things like exactly you're saying about Steve, what if we focus on what we are printing and how we can improve it intentionally. Versus like, the fact that we'll get imprints passively over time. So I mean, you know, we use it. So it's so common, even so many of us with vision boards, for example, we are on purpose, putting things in front of us that we want our brain to like start, much, like I said with masterclasses earlier to start putting wires and connections together. And that's the amazing thing about our subconscious brain level one that you spoke about, is it's so powerful, and it's so able to connect things without actually us consciously trying, but then at the same time, how do we try and imprint intentionally? So that's where I would think about there, if it's not the passing of time, what is what is it, it's what we exposed to in that time, much like we say, you know, the five people you spend the most time with is an indicator of you. And now in this digital world, it doesn't need to be the five people you spend the most time with in person. It can be the five podcasts you listen to the most, it can be the five YouTube channels you engage with the most or the social channels, and we get to put in front of us, and our subconscious brain and messaging and information that we kind of wants it to imprint on.
Erin Aquin 23:05
I love that. And I think that something that sometimes people when they're maybe engaging with some of these ideas for the first time, they'll think, Okay, now I'm good. I heard what Vikki said. She said, Go listen to five, they're gonna construe this, I'm going to slow it down. She said, Go listen to five podcasts I really want to start imprinting with she said, you know, start putting those things in my subconscious can work on it. But it's not always about adding more. It's sometimes about making space because I think something you and I are both very into is epic, resting. Like resting, I saw something on Instagram was like, Can sleeping be an Olympic sport, because I think you and I could get some medals. So I want to actually also bring in this idea that the way I think that that magic has has taken hold and why it works so well for those of us who are maybe into manifesting or let our subconscious work on things in the background. The confidence that we can do that and let some of that feel more passive and less like Well, now I have to do 20 minutes of vision boarding I'll put that on my calendar. Next. I think it comes from also knowing that a lot of that magic also happens in the spaces.
Vikki Louise 24:37
I'm so glad you brought that up because I would hate for anyone to take from this podcast episode that they need to find five podcasts to listen to. Because I guarantee you most of our work in the world is actually in doing less. So I would say find five podcasts you're going to stop
Erin Aquin 24:55
not this one. Not
Vikki Louise 24:58
finding this one. You lucky person, because you two are brilliant. But yeah, I completely agree with you, it's so important that we create space. And it's the one thing we really haven't been taught how to do. And so most often, when we start to do this, and I had a Facebook memory pop up from like three years ago, that was like, I'm going to learn how to nap like, I didn't know, I was the hustler I was to do everything at once live life to the max run 100 miles an hour person. And now I see what it was costing me in terms of creativity and connection and pleasure and presence. And, you know, all of that stuff that, you know, we've spoken about. And yeah, like, the one thing I would say to people that are like, Oh, that sounds horrible, or what would I do with my time or that's uncomfortable is it actually is uncomfortable at first to rest in like, productivity based, you know, culture. And it's still worth it. But I'm happy for you guys to share more about that.
Steve Haase 26:08
Yeah, the, me, for me, I connect with the morning meditation, and setting aside an hour first thing to do stuff that has no outward impact in the world. And I'm sitting there and there's this line in my brain saying, what do you do and you you're not doing anything, stop it, go, go get after it. And I'm like, okay, thank thank you for your input, I'm going to trust that work done on my inner being is going to allow me to bring more of what's true to me and what's actually resonant and real, therefore interesting and rich to the world. And so that requires a really good night's sleep. Because if my brain is zonked, all I'm really good for is just, you know, mindless stuff. And it requires time out from the doing, and also the consuming
Erin Aquin 27:17
to just create space.
Vikki Louise 27:22
Yeah, I love you know, the idea of doing it and creating that space first thing in the morning. Because it just really is clearly aligning it as a priority. Whereas so often we think, well, I'll do the things, you know, I'll wake up at 5am and get through my focus work, and then have achieved seven things on my to do list. And then I've earned a rest. And that keeps our rest in like a reactive recovery place instead of yours, which is like a proactive creative space.
Erin Aquin 27:55
Yeah, rest is not a reward in any way. Rest is like an essential tip, like Olympic athletes have recovery days. Yeah, they are not like how much can I jump over this stick? Yes. Can I do that? 10,000 times? It's like, No, you probably have like, a couple of good jumps, and then a workout and then, you know, three days off? Yeah, they have serious, the training program. It's not a it's not a special luxury.
Vikki Louise 28:30
Yes. And you know what's so interesting, I find that the cultural shift and rest so interesting, because it used to be that those that were the most successful, like, it was a sign of honor to be doing less. And it's somehow switch where we were like, Oh, it's a sign of honor to be doing more. And obviously, we want to get rid of this whole, you know, classes are break down away from it anyway. But I just think it's interesting that we've been sold this idea that, you know, busy is a badge of honor. And the successful people are willing to like grind it out and work the hardest. And just the fact that it's changed tells me that all it is is people just change their thought around. Yeah.
Erin Aquin 29:16
I want to also because I'm aware of another thing that some people may write off this full conversation, they'll be like, Oh, but it's nice for you to be able to all get up early and meditate or take a couple days off and rest but I have children. So I just want to let everybody know, Vikki's a new mom, new parents. Her partner works sometimes out of the country. She's doing the thing, Steven, I have two kids we've been you know, I think it's very easy, especially if you're a leader and a business owner to think, well, that's great for you, but I can't do it until my kids are 15 Because I'm I'm a parent. I've been Little kids. And something that shifted for me. After, I think it was after our daughter was born, I was writing my second book. And I invested was a very big deal for me in a nanny three days a week for three hours. And that was gonna be my writing time. And I had spent six or seven months kind of working on this one book. And I was like, No, I'm getting this book done before my daughter's first birthday. I'm gonna do it in these three hour segments. And I have no time for drama, I have no time for self doubt. I just like don't I don't have time. So that was my relation. I was like, there's these three hours are just for writing. They're just for me. I think sometimes people will use their children as a way of creating conflicts with work not not on purpose, for sure. But I'm really curious now that you are apparent how this work around time hacking is probably even more important. When you throw tiny humans into the mix. Can the 24 hours we have every day?
Vikki Louise 31:19
Yeah, I mean, I think you know this already, but I'll just share with everyone. Obviously, as a business owner, I can kind of choose when I come back to work. And that's been like a real mess if I'm being honest. So I don't want to come on here and people to listen and be like, Oh, she has everything figured out. And it's always sorted. And, you know, my other program, the 15 Hour Workweek, I've not even managed to get up to 15 hours. I'm like I want so I'm like ready to go. But the reality is, you know, has been being away and him just starting nursery this week. It's just not happened. In fact, I thought it was gonna happen in July.
Erin Aquin 31:59
Okay, we all think things. Parents,
Vikki Louise 32:03
that's what I mean about the planning as well. It's like allowing that flexibility of like, I'm just going to trust myself as I go. But exactly, like you said, I think people are so afraid of having less time so that they can check things less and perfect things last, but it's like when you don't have the option to perfect things. And to check them 100 times, and to spin in the drama of them, you still get the thing done, that you get it done without the spinning and the drama and the indecision. And we're so afraid of like, putting ourselves forward for something, because we think we don't have time and more time is optimal. And I would just challenge everyone listening to really sit with how is like one thing that you are working on right now? And how would be having less time to do that, like say it was due tomorrow? How would that be optimal? How would it been do in a week be optimized, if it's like three months out or tomorrow? I mean, I think it's fair to say probably most things, we might not get done to the level that we think we want. But really what that means is we're not going to perfect away maybe our greatest ideas and spend a lot of time shutting ourselves down and closing ourselves in, like self rejecting. So I would definitely say that. Another thing that I would say is, like meet yourself where you are at in terms of rest, if you are working parent or a carer or you know, there's things going on in your life, where you're like, No, you don't understand right now. I mean, there's definitely been times for me where in the last, you know, since having a baby where I've been like, Okay, this is challenging. And how I responded to that is like, if things don't take time, that also applies for like experiencing joy, and experiencing rest. And one of the things I said to one of my clients recently because she was really like in it of the like, I don't have time I have three kids I have, you know, all this stuff, a business and a job. And I was like, what if it's just a matter of like three deep breaths, like, Could we do three deep breaths. And the reason why I want to offer that to people is much like what I said about the questions on a Monday is sometimes you create such a distance between us in success and as in achieving something that we spend our whole lives in not achievement. And in my philosophy and around time hiking and around how we optimize our time is like, the shorter the path we make to success. The sooner we fuel ourselves with confidence and ability and trust. And that's like a different fuel than like needing to earn it and chase it and outside of us. So I would just offer that to anyone that's like this is not for me. I can't do that. Like can you do three deep breaths can you listen to like for me one of my favorite things to do is put on a song I Love and even though It's in the car, if it's in the room, I just like move my body a little bit like one song, three minutes we're talking. It can like change, like the whole experience that I'm having in our body. So I really invite everyone to, like, implement that kind of thing.
Steve Haase 35:15
I think that's such a powerful approach to success. I have a metaphor, I use his crimper lay, where like, there's just this little teeny crust on the surface of what you want, all you have to do is just tap your spoon through it, and then all the stuff that you want is underneath it. So right, that little action of let me just take three deep breaths, suddenly, you realize that you can rest and you can even start following that thread. Last night, our seven year old, tidied the entire damn house. And it started by me asking her to, to put the couch back together. Like when they play downstairs, the couch, the couch just becomes a total wreck.
Erin Aquin 35:56
Look at this kid, this is not like,
Steve Haase 36:00
please put the couch back together. Next thing we know the mudroom has done the kitchen has done the books are done like everything is suddenly in this perfect order. I mean, it's the seven year old order. But it's still like she really did it. Because she started with that one thing and opened up the possibility that she could keep on going. And I find that happens to me all the time is the moment I say, I can write 10 words, is the moment I'm like, you know, I've got time for 100 words. Yeah, I think I've actually got time for 500 words. And instead of scrolling or snacking, or, you know, consuming, I'm actually creating, but it took that shift of saying, I can do this right now. And that doesn't take any time.
Vikki Louise 36:44
Oh my gosh, I just want you to think about what would have been different. If you would have said to your daughter, we're gonna make a plan for you to clean all of these things. I'm going to write a list and I'm going to guess how much time it's going to take. And then we're gonna decide the order and then you must do it in that order. Like, that's what we're dealing with. This is like exactly, it. That's such a beautiful example. I love it so much. Because that's it, if you just start like me just start with the TED words, it's very different than saying, I have to write 500 words today, which is like, Okay, I wrote it down, I put it in, and it's due to start three minutes ago, and I'm already not started. So maybe I'll just get a drink. Because like, I don't even know if I can do the 500 Words, but like I made this plan. And I was just getting really hot and like, again, right? And it's like, this is what we do with it. So I just think there's a such beautiful example. Thank you for sharing.
Erin Aquin 37:36
Another way that I sort of think about this, that's that's shifted. And you know, every time I talk with the big Dickie, this kind of deepens for me is rather than time being an enemy. At its most neutral, it's as you said, it's that passive element. It's like gravity, and air, but but we have actually, maybe not actually, it's probably more or less like gravity and air because we can't control those things. And we can't necessarily change the, the dimensions, but it's, it's something that, at least collectively and culturally, we've decided that we sort of look at and we look at the clock that's at its most neutral. But if I want to have a different relationship with time, I just start thinking about it as like a precious spiritual commodity. And then it's like not even like, oh, maybe I have 10, I have time to do a couple more words I have time to it's like I'm gonna devote this resource that's tied to my energy. It's tied to my vision, I can like, pluck my bigger vision for what I'm doing and put it into exactly what we're doing in this conversation. The second that happens. It's almost like, I do love a calendar, I have things on my calendar, but it can immediately reprioritize everything in there. So I just you know, I always really appreciate speaking with you, because it always opens up some new cavern in my mind about time and how we work and kind of the magic of what's possible. Yeah, so thank you. I just love you. Thank you.
Vikki Louise 39:34
I love you. And I think you're right. It's like time is this most precious resource. It's the one thing that will, in the end we'll want more of and unfortunately, I think time has become like the weather. It's like just the thing that everyone complains about. And it's like societally acceptable to just talk bad about it. And like I always think what's the really kinship that we then build with time, when we're constantly talking about about it, and there's never enough of it. Versus a relationship we build when we're like, how I get, like, I'm one of the things I love about time is every single human, all of us, we fall asleep, and we wake up and our clocks reset, and there's hours available for us in the day. And it's a resource that like keeps showing up for us even, you know, no matter what we do,
Erin Aquin 40:25
we talk about it. Exactly. It's like imagine
Vikki Louise 40:29
going to the casino every day, and you just get to like gamble, and then it just like comes up the next day. Which means it's this resource that we get to like, learn how to optimize every day. And we're gonna get replenished tomorrow, which means like, when we know how to optimize our time, when we have a strategy for using our time, well, it's going to pay dividends. Like it's the best investment we can make, really, but unfortunately, it's also become the societally accepted excuse. And so we don't have to say things like, I actually don't want to hang out with you. Or actually, it's not important for me that I, you know, really silly example, my dad is really wanting us to take baby to swimming lessons, and like we will, but it's not like a super big priority for us right now. And so he keeps saying, You booked swimming lessons and like, it's just not that big a deal to me. It's like, Have you booked? It's just not important to me right now. But it's important to me, I understand. And you can take him swimming if you want. But it's like that conversation is uncomfortable, instead of saying, Oh, I don't have time, we've just moved into the house, kiddies in France, it's so much easier to say that. But if I say that I'm not owning my truth, which is like this is not a priority. And I just imagine what would change in our relationships, in our work in our day to day lives when we weren't allowed to use the T word as a reason for not doing something
Steve Haase 41:57
that's so powerful. And yeah, in terms of culture, like if that's the sort of thing that colleagues, people who are working together on things can start doing, there's just going to be, I think it's going to help mental wellness overall. Because the feeling of victimhood, by using time as your excuse for not being able to do the thing you want is crushing, right? You're just like, I wish I could see my kids grow up, but work, you know it. Rather than acknowledging, right now I'm choosing to prioritize my work over XYZ activity, you know, and then and then owning that decision, because that's what you want to do, or not right? Being very clear with your workplace. Look, these are my priorities. And this is how I plan on living in alignment with that, rather than, you know, using the kids as an excuse, using work as an excuse. And just putting all that power outside yourself, where fundamentally it lives in your decisions related to time.
Vikki Louise 43:04
So good. And even as you're speaking like, it's so powerful to think about where you are going with that which is like, within the organization, the thing communicating the things that we are not available for because we don't want to be there at 9pm. And it's like I think about emails, I think emails is such a, we're not taught how to use them in an optimized way. So it can be hyper inefficient. I mean, I still have my out of office on maternity leave on my inbox, like, I get to keep that. And I mean, actually, maybe I shouldn't keep it as the safety. But I think even before it, we did have a auto responder that said, you might not get a reply. Yeah, communicating that with colleagues, like I actually am not going to check my emails, aside from, you know, 9am and 3pm. So if you have anything outside, if you have anything you want me to look at, that's my time boundary, and if not, like, just don't expect me to reply and how we can communicate all priorities because I have, you know, my priority list that I want to get done, or like, I actually am never gonna go to meetings, where we're discussing growth in marketing, because I'm on the sales team. And I would really love instead to just get like, a bullet point, you know, a bullet point update afterwards. And like for the whole sales team, instead of a full sales team and a full marketing team, going to a meeting to watch what other people are saying like, I'm just never gonna go into a meeting where I'm watching what other people are saying seven summary. So yeah, I think like you're saying it's not I don't have time it's that's not a priority. For me. That's not going to be something where I'm able to create a return for the business that justifies me being in an hour long meeting.
Steve Haase 44:47
I think being able to take that stance will open up uses for technology and tools I'm thinking of, you know, AI transcription services, like here were the main points of the meeting like that. can be done with zero human effort. And then you kind of look through the things you tweak, and then you send it out. You just saved your organization, potentially hundreds of hours with a software tool. But it had to start with the intention. That time is precious. And we're not going to rake our people over the coals of attending every meeting.
Erin Aquin 45:21
Vikki Louise 45:22
Exactly. I love that you took that to the AI angle, because Absolutely, we have all these amazing tools. Yeah. And I think just like you said, it's about that first person, having the culture where they can speak up, and then having the creativity to find those many options that we have to support our business.
Erin Aquin 45:46
And I want to make sure people know as they're listening, that if you are listening to this, and you're thinking, that's the kind of culture I want to work in, that's the kind of business I want to have, whether you're the leader, or whether you're working in someone else's business. Vikki does do this work with individuals inside time, hackers and her mastermind, but she also can come into a company and help the culture shift. So that it's not, you're the lone wolf, trying to figure out how to, like suddenly tell your boss, this meeting is no longer a priority for me, that might not go over so well. But maybe having her come in and work with the leadership in your company, and your whole team could be an option. So we will definitely link to all things, Vikki, show notes. And just kind of I'm curious, like any kind of closing thoughts, Vikki that you would want to share with someone whose mind has been blown up? And they're maybe not sure, like kind of what to just do going forward? Before they as they are starting to explore you and your work. But like, you know, what's something that maybe they could just take with them from this,
Vikki Louise 47:01
I immediately want you to finish this podcast episode and put on a song that you love and just experience that. Because if this podcast episode would have been three minutes long, we still would have listened to it. So I know that you asked for that.
Erin Aquin 47:16
And, yeah, I
Vikki Louise 47:18
think just don't give yourself a hard time about, I always say the biggest waste of time, is the time we spent thinking about the time we've wasted. So don't, don't give yourself a hard time for anything that you've done or not done in your past or in your day already today, just really meeting your passion. We are humans, we've been told and trained to think in certain ways around time. And that doesn't make us wrong. It's just a beautiful thing that we develop and grow. And we are developing and growing. And the conversation that we've had today, from the three of us, what you've heard is, you know, as three forward thinkers, we are, you know, leaps and bounds ahead of I think, a lot of a conversation on this. So just let yourself enjoy that. Don't use it to criticize yourself.
Steve Haase 48:09
Really, Vikki, thank you so much for your time. Thank you for joining us and giving your life energy to this Congress
Erin Aquin 48:16
resources, your sacred energy.
Steve Haase 48:19
It was it was lovely to meet you get to know you and have this fascinating conversation.
Vikki Louise 48:25
Thank you so much for having me. Always a pleasure. And I'm like, wait, it feels like it's been three minutes. This is the ultimate example for me of like, you know, time is just a mental construct, isn't it? Because it's just like, I feel like we're just getting started. Yeah.
Erin Aquin 48:41
Love to have you back. Oh, good. Thank you so much, Vikki. That was amazing. You're amazing.