The Early Hours Presents: Catelyn Silapachai

After a few weeks off getting ready for SXSW and staying busy, we're back with another interview. This time around we talked to my sister, Catelyn, who runs a business called The Distillery that we started together about 4 years ago. When she's not traveling and scouring markets for jewelry to sell, she spends a tremendous time volunteering.  She became heavily involved in Central Texas greyhound rescue after adopting a few of her own, and subsequently started a program called 1Dog1Hour with our friend Melissa Massello. The program now has ambassadors in multiple states helping to start similar programs nationwide, encouraging animal lovers to spend some time with dogs at their local shelters, to try and calm them and make them more appealing to potential adopters. Catelyn is a brilliant character with one of the most unique personalities I've ever met, and I encourage you to check out her instagram @thedistillerymarket as well as @1dog1hour, and feel free to reach out to her if you want to get involved. Enjoy the interview below!

1. Time is the most valuable resource. Do you agree or disagree, and why? 

I must have heard this on The Tim Ferriss Show: attention is the most valuable resource. I've thought about that a lot since I first heard it, and I have to agree. The incredibly mind blowing thing about time is that we all have the same amount of it. Clearly, it isn't enough just to have it. To be able to utilize it well requires focus, an increasingly scarce resource in our distraction-addicted society. 

2. How DO you spend your time? 

I have perfectionist tendencies and also feel the need to be "productive" at all times, a brutal combination that results in near-constant mental self-flagellation and indecision. Admittedly, concepts like "perfection" and "productivity" are subjective and relative; meaning that the target is constantly moving and there is no North Star to guide me. To say the least, how I spend my time is a constant struggle, especially since starting my own business. Of some help is the science that I've learned about habits from the book "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg and routines and rituals from (again) Tim Ferriss and his podcast guests. In summary, routines are good and healthy and the quicker they become habits, the less you have to think about doing them. This has helped me to develop some regularity to my days. Mornings are spent journaling and reading, mid-morning to around 5pm is spent working, early evenings I work out, and for the rest of the night I eat dinner, spend time with my husband or friends, then read more before bed. I also volunteer quite a bit with animals, and I've started to batch all of those tasks for Tuesdays, rather than randomly throughout the week, to the extent that I can. That's basically how I spend my weekdays, and weekends are variable. 

Click below to finish the interview.. 

3. Ideally, how WOULD you spend your time, if money were not an issue? 

Honestly, since I have my own business that I deeply care about and am able to volunteer, having more money wouldn't change how I spend my time at all. As I mentioned in my answer to the last question, I am often quite conflicted about how I spend my time, but it has nothing to do with money. 

4. How do you plan to get from where you are, to where you want to be? 

Goal-setting and implementation isn't something I've always enjoyed, done, or wanted to do, but in the past year or so that has changed. A book I would highly recommend on this subject is called "Mindset" by Carol Dweck. It talks about having a fixed mindset vs. a growth mindset; a fixed mindset being one that says that we are the way we are and nothing can change that (ie: bad at sports, jealous, not artistic, etc), and a growth mindset being one that is open to learning and believes that change and growth is possible in absolutely all areas. That book showed me that I did have a fixed mindset in many areas of life, and now I strive for a more growth mindset. Goal-setting is part of that journey for me. Breaking down goals into actionable and specific steps is crucial. I'm still learning how to do this, so I'd love to hear your other interviewees answers to this one. 

5. What is the one biggest time wasting habit or thing you endure in your life? Could you reduce the impact of this if you wanted to spend the time doing something productive instead?

It has to be social media. There have been times when I'm tempted to write off social media entirely, but I remember the real friendships I've made that started on Instagram and the amazing the business opportunities it has afforded me. It's a tool that we have to learn how to control otherwise it controls us. for me I've found that this requires more than willpower since checking social media has become a habit (meaning I do it compulsively), and I find that I have to leave my phone in my car or home to really stop checking it. I'm trying to build habits into my life where I do this more and more (after 9am, when out to dinner, when at the gym, etc).

6. What one thing do you indulge in that takes significant amounts of time that others might see as a waste, but you see as a blessing or integral part of your life?  

Reading. I read all sorts of books for hours everyday, some that I can apply directly to my life, and others that are just interesting. So it does feel like an indulgence, since for the most part, I can't "apply" what I'm learning to my life necessarily, but I feel that reading a good use of my time because it enriches my daily life immeasurably. 

Thanks as usual for checking this out, we should be back to a weekly release schedule now with some other great interviews in the coming weeks. Let us know what you think on instagram @earlyhoursclif and leave your comments - I look forward to hearing from you!