Well I think it’s safe to say you’re all loving Sarah Knight and her books. 😉 When I posted my review of her new one just 2 weeks ago, you flooded the comment section with questions for her. I spent an entire afternoon transferring them into a spreadsheet document, and then Sarah picked a handful to answer here on the site (and some more to answer over on YouTube). So, without further ado, I give you a Q&A with Sarah Knight herself.
*Disclaimer: Sarah sent me a free copy of her book. Whoop!
Questions are in bold, Sarah’s answers are in bold italics, and my comments are in [square brackets]. I’ve paraphrased some of the questions so they “flow” a little more easily, but YouTube usernames are listed so you’ll know who you are. =)
(Oh, and don’t forget that Sarah’s also doing a “life advice” segment over on the HowToGYST YouTube channel so hop on over there when you’re done here.)
Q. How long would you say it took to get your shit together? ~ 'QuestFocus'
I’ve had my shit mostly together for my whole life. This book was a way of explaining to other people how I do it. My biggest problem is with what I call “deep shit”—the really nitty gritty mental stuff, like anxiety. Once I started experiencing anxiety in a crippling way (in my mid-twenties), it took me several years to understand what was going on and get help, and then another few years to figure out the right ways for me, personally, to stay on top of it. In that sense, I’m still evolving, but I have pretty much all the other shit under control (except understanding how to do my taxes, which I cop to in the book).
[It’s like a wrote this answer myself. Hurray for therapists and accountants!]
Q. Do you ever struggle with Imposter Syndrome and if so, how do you deal with it? ~ 'A Simple Homestead'
I have to confess I don’t even know what Impostor Syndrome is…
[Given the topics of her books, this doesn’t surprise me in the slightest. Someone who has their shit together as much as Sarah does has nothing to fear here. She’s the real deal.]
Q. Will the books be translated into German? ~ 'Isa Bel'
Yes! "The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a Fuck" is already out in German (the title there is “Not Sorry”) and it was a bestseller. My German publisher also bought “Get Your Shit Together” so eventually they will both be on sale in Deutschland.
Q. Why do women have a harder time getting their shit together than men? ~ 'Arcia French'
I don’t believe they do, actually. I think women have a harder time saying no to things and being confrontational than men do, but that’s more about not giving a fuck. A psychologist (which I am not) would tell you that from a young age, girls are socialized to not hurt people’s feelings, whereas boys are socialized to win at any cost. So once they reach adulthood it’s ingrained in women to be accommodating and non-confrontational—often to their own detriment—and they wind up giving WAY too many unnecessary fucks just to keep other people happy. That’s why my NotSorry Method focuses on not giving a fuck while also not turning into an asshole. Women (and everyone, really) need to know that it’s okay to say no, to set boundaries, and to defend your time, energy, and money. If you do that in an honest and polite way, you have nothing to apologize for, hence the name of the method. Getting your shit together is comparatively easy, I think!
[Trying to teach my daughter these very things.]
Q. Dog or cat/shitten person? ~ 'Mya C'
Catcatcatcatcat. (I really dislike dogs.) Our cat, Doug, died in 2015 and I don’t know if we’ll ever get another one because I don’t know if I can go through another pet death. Maybe when I’m 80 and confident the kitty will outlive me.
[I feel like cat people, like the creatures themselves, might lean more naturally towards not giving a fuck.]
Q. What the f*ck made you stop giving a f*ck? What event pushed you to that moment? And how did you get her shit together to write two amazing books? ~ 'Kate W'
I answer both of these questions pretty thoroughly in each book, but basically, it was quitting my corporate job that provided the catalyst for giving fewer, better fucks. And having my shit together was how I was able to strategize, focus, and commit to that plan—saving up money, starting a freelance business, and eventually writing the books.
Q. What was your process like for writing the book? How long did it take? ~ 'erbadkitten'
The first book took me one month to write, because that’s all I had. (The deadline was crazy, and I don’t recommend trying to do that if you don’t have to.) The second book took me about two-and- a-half months, which is also not enough time, but again I was working under a really tight deadline because my publisher wanted to get the second book out a year after the first, and in the same month, etc.
The way I did it was simple: I broke my word count down into daily goals and made it my mission to hit it every single day. Some days I would exceed my goal, which was good, because every week or so would come a day when I just couldn’t get it up to write. Either I wasn’t feeling well or the ideas just weren’t flowing. But since I was so disciplined I usually had a little extra word cushion to fall back on so I didn’t get behind. It really was a matter of putting one word in front of the other until I had an entire completed draft in the time allotted. It’s exactly what I talk about in "Get Your Shit Together"—setting a goal, making a plan to achieve it, and moving forward in small, manageable chunks. You can’t say I don’t practice what I preach 😉
[Can we pause here for a moment and marvel at the fact that Sarah actually wrote her first book in the space of just one month. A MONTH! Sometimes it takes me a month just to move the clothes from the washing machine to the dryer.]
Q. If you had to eat one food/meal for the rest of your life (with no health effects) what would it be? ~ 'Finding a way'
Pizza. All day and half the night.
Yeah, I think we can all agree she’s the cat’s pyjamas.
Sarah’s new book “Get Your Shit Together” is already on shelves (physical and digital) so go get yourself a copy if you haven’t already.
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You can also follow her on Twitter and Instagram: @mcsnugz.
And now hop on over to YouTube where she gave some sound life advice to three lucky viewers who wanted to know how to stop dipping into their home time to finish their work, how to take on enormous tasks, and how to move from planning to doing.
I want to say yet another THANK YOU to Sarah for being such a good sport. And a huge thank you to YOU, reader, because without your support, people like Sarah wouldn’t give this site a second thought. You make the magic happen, and I’m eternally grateful.