While I letter, I can listen to anything and think about anything while my hands are occupied with the creation process.
In watching many letterer's process videos, I've noticed that a lot of them listen to music or each Netflix while they work.
I love music as much as the next person, especially classical music. But perhaps I love it too much - I find it painfully distracting to listen to while I letter, because I start thinking about the instrumentation and history of the piece, and my hand starts to shake to the beat!
As for Netflix, I've watched many an episode while lettering - but I just feel like it's not the most efficient use of time. I get distracted and waste minutes with my eyes locked on the screen before I realise I've become distracted! It really requires my eyes and ears to fully enjoy it, and I don't have both of them to give while I'm lettering.
So to take as much advantage of my ears' and brain's freedom as I can, I listen to podcasts.
The audio is interesting enough to keep my ears and mind engaged, but not running into overdrive. And unlike music, there aren't usually many spikes in the volume which could cause an involuntary hand jolt!
This is a podcast about being human. In each episode, the host Krista Tippett interviews someone such as Martin Sheen, Yo Yo Ma or Desmond Tutu. And in the most beautiful, gracious, caring voice, she speaks with them about their lives. She somehow reaches their cores, without ever seeming prying or overreaching.
When I listen to this podcast, it feels like therapy. The therapy of listening to another human speak from their heart, of choosing to have empathy for them even if I completely disagree with their words, and of gleaning what wisdom and knowledge I can from their generosity and openness.
A similar format to On Being, Tim interviews a world-class performer in each episode. These people range from authors like Paulo Coethlo to Seth Godin to the one-handed concert pianist Nicholas McCarthy. Tim talks with them about their journey and dissects their daily habits and practices.
I find it amazing to listen to people's stories - people who I never would have otherwise heard of! It's also helped to shape my habits - I use the Five Minute Journal app every day because Tim recommended it, and it's inspired me to think mindfully about my routines and see where I'm using time unwisely.
This is my favourite business podcast - it's hosted by Sean McCabe and Ben Toalsen. They talk about how to run a sustainable, audience-driven business which is based on your values. After each episode, I have at least one piece of advice which I can't wait to put into practice in my business, and their wise and generous counsel through this podcast has subconsciously formed a large part of how I run Letters by Chrissy.
It's also informed many non-business aspects of my life. Sean & Ben have helped me to see failure differently, shown me the importance of consistency and transparency, encouraged me to earnestly and aggressively search for what I love and become great at it, and to get up earlier (which changes everything!)
I hope this was helpful for you and that you enjoy listening to these podcasts. The only problem with podcasts, is that I listen to a lot of episodes very quickly. So if you have a podcast that you adore, will you let me know its name? You can do so here.