Sunday with The Scribes - #38 (Interview Edition)

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For the next couple of weeks, Sunday with The Scribes is going to look a bit different.

Instead of offering up our standard 'Productivity Tip' and 'What's in our journal,' we are bringing the productivity experts to you. We are bringing you the words of some of our personal and professional role models, who happen to be titans in their respective fields.

To kick us off, we are going to be hearing from Vicky Tsai!

Vicky is the founder and CEO of Tatcha, a San Francisco based skin-care company who recently sold to Unilever. We have long been familiar of Tatcha, but we had no idea of Vicky's incredible story until listening to her episode of our favorite podcast, How I Built This (highly recommend). Vicky also happens to be a happy customer of The Scribes!

We got the chance to ask Vicky a few questions around her routine, habits, and what keeps her productive. Enjoy!


This is Sunday with The Scribes, a newsletter that goes out every Sunday morning with the hopes to inspire the day and week ahead. Vicky - What does your typical Sunday look like?

Regardless of the day, my husband and I usually wake up around 5:45am. My daughter, and our five rescues (two dogs and three cats) don’t wake up until around 6:30 or 7am, so I look forward to this small window of quiet time. I’ll first meditate for a few moments to set my intentions for the day, and then use the remaining time to create my to do list and write in my journal. Over the years, I’ve come to find that journaling daily helps me get my head in a good mindset and allows me to prioritize what I need to do that day. I never go anywhere without one.

Once everyone’s awake, we’ll make breakfast together and plan out the day over pancakes. Because of Covid, we’re currently living in a snowy mountain town, so our Sundays are relatively low-key. They usually involve exploring outside and building snowmen together in the backyard, and then we’ll cook dinner together and eat around 6 or 6:30pm.

After dinner, my daughter and I will read together in her bed until she falls asleep. Normally I’m on the road for about 200 days out of the year, so not being able to travel because of the pandemic has made me really cherish this time I’m able to spend with her.

I’m usually asleep by 8:30pm, so after I tuck her into bed I’ll do my nighttime skincare ritual. It takes me about five minutes and involves a different mantra for each of the five steps, which helps me clear my head before tucking into bed and starting all over again the next morning

It's Monday morning and your calendar is booked with meetings from 9:00am to 6:00pm. A meeting gets cancelled and all of a sudden you have a free hour in the middle of your day. How are you going to spend this time?

Outside, either going for a walk or meditating in the woods.

While technology and the increased screen time allows us to keep moving forward with work, it’s also important to take a break and immerse yourself in nature. In Japan, they practice something called shinrin-yoku, which translates to bathing in the forest atmosphere, or taking in the forest through our senses. I first discovered it on one of my many trips to Kyoto, and I now try to do it whenever possible, even if just for a few moments. By connecting with nature through our senses of sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch, we’re able to bridge the gap between us and the natural world, and studies have shown that it can provide a multitude of health benefits, including reduced blood pressure, stress, fatigue and anxiety levels.

What’s a habit or ritual that helps you be your most productive self?


Starting Tatcha and having a child at the same time taught me that if I don’t prioritize, there’s no way I’ll be able to get everything done and still be happy at the end of the day. I've mapped my work time against the time I want to be available to my family, and I’ll predetermine how much time I want to spend on something so I don't extend myself or get spread too thin. I find that as a leader, the more you focus on your own efficiency and productivity the more you can set the tone for your family and the people you have the honor of leading.
We hope you enjoyed this weeks newsletter! A special thank you to Vicky Tsai for taking time out of her busy schedule to share her wisdom with us.

Respond to this email with any feedback you may have. Another amazing guest is queued up for next week!
- Mike, Pooja, and Alden