When you have the opportunity to ask some of the most interesting people in the world about their lives, sometimes the most fascinating answers come from the simplest questions. The Thrive Questionnaire is an ongoing series that gives an intimate look inside the lives of some of the world’s most successful people.

Thrive Global: What’s the first thing you do when you get out of bed?
India Hicks: I worry about my 4 teenage boys and what dreadful thing they might have been up to the night before and wonder if I can get away with driving Domino, my daughter, to school in my PJ’s on the golf cart. We live on a small island in the Bahamas because David, my other half, decided to give up life in England and start again on a tropical island, as you do.

TG: What gives you energy?
IH: Every day I wake up excited and energized by the company I have founded.

We are a direct sales business and offer the opportunity for other entrepreneurial women to join us in selling our lifestyle collections, but these women get to do it in their own time and on their own terms. And they can build a gigantic business with us if they want, or they can just have a few girlfriends round for a Get Together and a glass of wine and do a gentle bit of shopping every now and then, it’s really up to them.

More recently we introduced Get Together Give Together and this really got me energized! Our tribe of philanthropic women are now able to donate part of the proceeds from their sales to any charity of their choice, any charity at all.

Our company motto is Live An Extraordinary Life. That’s pretty energizing.

TG: What’s your secret life hack?
IH: I am unfamiliar with the word ‘hack’ in this context, in English it refers to informal horse riding, I rather assume that is not the question.

I am guessing it’s another way of asking about life tricks…mine is a lot of licorice, balanced out with a lot of green juice and an hour by hour plan for the week ahead.

TG: Name a book that changed your life.
IH: From A Clear Blue Sky, beautifully written by my cousin Tim Knatchbull, about the murder of our grandfather in Ireland in 1979. We were all together on holiday when he was assassinated. Reading Tim’s words was very moving. We all suffered hugely from this act of terrorism but no one more so than Tim who lost his beloved twin in the bomb.

TG: Tell us about your relationship with your phone. Does it sleep with you?
IH: Occasionally when I am going through a bad sleeping patch I will leave the phone outside the bedroom door and will study one of our forecasting plans, instead of scrolling through emails, which will put me to sleep almost immediately.

TG: How do you deal with email?
IH: As quickly as I can. Having now founded this Direct Sales business I get hundreds of emails a day so I try to stay on top of it as much as I possibly can, but if I have a day of travel or meetings or events I simply can’t keep up. I tried having an assistant look over them but at the end of the day we wanted to strangle each other.

TG: You unexpectedly find 15 minutes in your day, what do you do with it?
IH: Call my mother in England, who will be sitting on her pale pink sofa reading the newspaper.

TG: When was the last time you felt burned out and why?
IH: At the moment I am on a flight to somewhere or other almost weekly, which is sort of OK. But it’s when you cross three time zones and visit two cities a day during that week that you begin to feel burned out. I come home and no one wants to be with me because I am so crotchety, even the dachshund leaves the room.

I am commuting weekly from the small island I live on to our headquarters in Los Angeles, and beyond.

It’s been a fascinating education, not only because I have learnt so much about the entrepreneurial women joining us, but also about America itself.

I have seen a coronation in Tyler Texas, been at a rodeo convention in Idaho, and Rodeo Drive in Hollywood, visited Elvis’s home in Graceland, dashed across the boarder to glimpse Niagara Falls before speaking at the Buffalo Women’s club, checked into a Hilton in Huntsville, Alabama with a gun carrying cowboy, seen coyote in Seattle, snow in Denver, sunshine in Florida, wind in Chicago, sleet in Boston, spring in Atlanta, summer in Dallas, winter in Detroit, felt welcomed in both North and South Carolina, Charleston, Savannah, Cleveland, and Columbus to name but a few of the cities I have traveled to for work.

TG: When was the last time you felt you failed and how did you overcome it?
IH: I feel like I am failing quite often, getting the balance right between work and motherhood is almost impossible, well I find it is. Do you choose to miss Easter Monday with your family in order to be in the office with your team? Whatever you decide to do you feel like you have failed someone. The only comfort is knowing that many, many other women battle the same dilemma.

TG: Share a quote that you love and that gives you strength or peace.
IH: Plus Est En Vous. There is more in you than you know. My old school Motto, quite appropriate when you consider the school was on a cliff, in the freezing North of Scotland, the boys called the girls ‘Hags’ and we were made to eat blood sausage on Robbie Burns night.

Author, model, entrepreneur, TV personality and daughter of famed designer David Hicks, India comes from both British and design royalty.

Her God father is the Prince of Wales and India was a bridesmaid at his wedding to Lady Diana.

Living with her young family on a small island in the Bahamas, she has shared and documented her multidimensional, unpredictable life through social media, her lifestyle books and her website indiahicks.com

India is connected to a broad spectrum of tastemakers and is established as an influencer amongst modern, strong, entrepreneurial women.

Unencumbered by tradition, India has made bold life choices that inspire women to join her in the pursuit of an extraordinary life.

After a successful career designing collections of bath & beauty products, bedding and jewelry in partnership with others the time for change arrived. With two strong business minded partners India has launched a lifestyle brand: India Hicks. These collections are sold through entrepreneurial women at home, online, or one-to-one. This is more than a trunk show business, it’s about building more than a company, it’s about building a community.

Originally published at medium.com