Be Inspired

Be Inspired

One bad day doesn’t make a bad life

Sometimes when the rain is pouring, it´s important to remember that there is sunshine hiding behind those clouds. And it’s going to shine again.

We all have those days. The ones when nothing goes your way and staying in bed under the blanket might be the best thing to do. Sometimes it’s easier to deal with and other times it can be a real nightmare. But, no matter how bad things may be, it is always important to remember that it’s just a phase, and like anything else in life, it too shall pass.

From stress, to hormones, and things not working out as you hoped, there are many factors that can turn your mood sour. A bad meeting, not getting the job you wanted, traffic jam, family drama, heartbreak – the list can go on and on. Some days it may be none of it. Maybe you are just in your PMS or the Mercury is retrograde and you are not feeling it.

When the bad mood sets in, be extra kind to yourself

When the bad mood comes, with or without a specific cause, it is crucial to be extra kind to yourself. Instead of being harsh, try to be your own best friend. Play your favourite song, treat yourself to some ice-cream, light some candles, get a glass of wine or do whatever it is that gets you to relax.

Cry it out if that helps, or call your best friend and confidant that you know will listen to you and try to cheer you up. Sometimes just talking it out can do wonders. Be extra attentive to yourself and give it some time.

Even when the bad day stretches into two or three, just know that it all must end and better days are awaiting just around the corner.


By: Ivona Josipovic

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Spurtee- Powerful sportswear for powerful women

With a vision to help ladies release their inner power and share that feeling with others, Mina Lindman founded the brand Spurtee. By wearing Spurtee sportswear you share your power and encourage others to do greater things.
By: Henriette Danielsen Photo: Spurtee

We met Mina at Clarion Hotel Sign in Stockholm on a cold and wet January day. But with her positive energy and big smile she instantly brightened up the room.

So, who is Mina Lindman? Mina has done a lot of different things throughout her career. Everything from being a consultant to working with sales, being marketing manager and lastly CEO. But she didn’t feel happy, so she decided to quit and become an entrepreneur. Today she is the brains behind the sports brand Spurtee.
– I had a vision of finding a fun way to support girls and women to release their inner powers. I am also very much inspired by the whole start-up scene here in Stockholm. There is so much potential and possibilities and you get encouraged to try your own thing. Which I did, Mina says.

Spurtee´s first collection was “The Power Collection”. A collection of workout clothes made of organic materials with inspiring quotes, putting Spurtee on the map and encouraging you to do greater things through their powerful messages. And most recently they launched a more niched collection, focusing on yoga.
– Imagine the feeling when you can take that yoga pose a little bit further, when you run and reach the top of that steep hill, when you score a three pointer or when you finally get the hang on how to do a deadlift. When you have that feeling you want to share it with the world, and you want others to experience the same feeling of euphoria. That is what my brand is all about!

If you can dream it, you can do it

The brand name came from the two words “Spurt” or “Spur” and “Tee”.
– To spurt means to sprint like you do in short-distance running, and the idea is that you get an extra spurt when your read the message on the back of our shirts. But you can also read it as Spur, with the meaning of encouraging someone. And, tee is of course short for t-shirt, she explains.

And what makes Spurtee the brand to choose when it comes to fitness clothing?
– Apart from being edgy and empowering, we think the design is very flattering, bringing out the best of you. And, also, the materials we use are soft, light and has natural thermal qualities to keep you cool when exercising or just strolling around on a hot day.

Besides focusing on her new collection, Mina has many exciting plans for the brand in the future. They are for instance soon launching a possibility to pre-order your favorite Spurtee, in addition to preparing for shipping outside of Sweden and the launch a new collection called “Runner’s Collection”.
– We hope to launch the Runner’s Collection together with an influential runner that really loves and lives our brand. In addition, we are continuously looking for other brands that will supplement Spurtee, and sell them on our online store. Much fun  awaits, Maria says.

Want to learn more about Spurtee? Check out their website and Instagram account for more inspiration.


Facts
Name: Mina Lindman
Age: 42
Lives: Stockholm, Sweden
Favorite quote: “Just Do It” is my all-time favorite, it’s so much me!

Be Inspired

7 ways to be your happier self

Some people think happiness is something that just happens or comes naturally. It is widely believed that it is elusive and needs to be chased, but cannot be created. Many people view it as a temporary state, something to be achieved and worked to maintain. Each year, people spend millions of dollars and hours of labor trying to achieve things they think will make them happy.

However, happiness is found within. Some of the happiest people in the world have very little in the way of material wealth, yet they live in a state of serenity. The Kingdom of Bhutan even accounts for its people’s happiness before installing new public works. Happiness is a state of mind, and while it does need to be maintained, it’s not as elusive or fleeting as you think!

Here are seven ways to find your bliss:

Eat right
The old adage says “You are what you eat.” This is actually true. The foods you ingest release vitamins and minerals into your body that trigger the release of hormones, for good or ill. Many processed foods and refined sugars cause the release of stress hormones on the body, which contributes to low mood and larger health problems in the long term. Eating leafy greens and drinking a lot of water is better for your mood because stress hormones are not released by eating them.

Mindfulness practices
Mindfulness is a type of meditation that teaches us to observe our thoughts and emotions in a non-judgemental way. There are many types of mindfulness practices, such as meditation, yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi/Qigong, and martial arts. These practices help build emotional intelligence, called EQ, which is the ability to observe, identify, and appropriately express emotions. Building EQ can help teach us why we become unhappy and how to cope with those feelings.

Practice gratitude
Often we take the things we see every day for granted, making it difficult to realize how important they truly are. Many spiritual traditions practice gratitude, and while the simple act of saying “thank you” may not seem like something that will usher in happiness, it is actually one of the most powerful methods of building happiness. Even just writing a few sentences of gratitude in a journal each day can go a long way.

Happiness is not a secret that has been kept from people or a prize that is difficult to attain!

Be in nature
Exposure to plants, flowers, and natural light has been shown to release stress and have a calming effect upon the mind and body. Even having a photograph of plants and flowers was shown to increase productivity in offices that had no windows. Getting outside for some fresh air can also provide a literal breather from dust and mold that can collect indoors. Having plants inside the house or on the desk of your office can bring a little of the power of flowers to you when you can’t get outside.

Get some exercise
Whether at home, at the gym, or around the neighbourhood, getting plenty of exercise is a must for a happier you. Exercise has obvious health benefits, such as burning calories and building muscle, but even a little exercise each day can also help reduce stress. This happens in two ways: first, exercise burns off the stress hormone cortisol, which raises blood sugar and pressure in preparation for an emergency, but stores fat and sugar when released over a long term. Secondly, muscles (as a result of cortisol) hang onto tension and become tight; exercise releases that tension naturally.

Play with pets
Our furry, finned, and feathered friends can bring a lot of joy to our lives. Pets have been used to assist people suffering from illnesses such as blindness, epilepsy, diabetes, PTSD, and anxiety disorders for years. More recent studies found that caring for a pet, even temporarily, teaches children compassion and empathy, and reduces bullying in schools. Having and playing with pets can bring a long term happiness to the whole family.

Go offline for family
Social support is an important coping mechanism for social animals like humans. It means getting together in person with friends or loved ones and talking about your feelings, problems, and happiness, and listening to others do the same. Family is one of the best ways to connect socially because they are the first agents to teach kids to socialize. Listening to and connecting with family can offer a powerful alternative to the fleeting happiness of television and digital devices. Empathizing with and being compassionate in person is one of the best ways to be happy.

Happiness is not a secret that has been kept from people or a prize that is difficult to attain. It is the product of simple practices that cost very little and can be done by anyone. It is easily within your grasp, so be your happiest self by practicing happiness.


By: Freelance writer Ashley Smith 

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Keeping the stink out

When hitting the gym, we naturally sweat! And sweat is good! Except for when the odor gets stuck in your clothes. Like really stuck. 

We all sweat! It´s a natural part of working out and nobody frowns upon that (if they do give them a little kick in the butt). However, it can be very frustrating when freshly laundered athletic gear retains the smell of your sweatiest gym sessions. But worry not,  it’s totally common and very treatable.

The best thing to do is preventing the stink from developing in the first place. But how can we do that? Let’s take a look:

  1. Let the clothes air dry before putting them back into your closet or in the laundry bag. Why? Because when sweat-soaked clothes are stuffed into a humid and cramped little space you create the perfect environment for bacteria to throw a big party, which will smell!
  2. Turn your gym clothes inside out before washing. A little party trick to get rid of all the bacteria and sweat from your body, which is naturally on the inside of the clothes.
  3. With detergent, less is more. Using to much detergent will leave soap residue on your clothes, which will contribute to the development of odor-causing bacteria. Kinda weird, since it is quite the opposite of what you think adding extra detergent will do.

If non of the above work and the smell is already there, and it is there to stay, well then; time for step two! How to defunk your smelly gym clothes:

  1. Power wash your clothes with one cup white vinegar and one tablespoon baking soda. It will help separate the bacteria from the fabric.
  2. Don´t forget that the stink, odor, nasty smell (whatever you like to call it) can be stuck in your gym bag. So giving that a wash every once in a while might help!
  3. If nothing else works then turn to our last, very magical solution: buy new clothes #sorrynotsorry
    Or ask Doctor Google for some more advice!

Good luck!


By: Henriette Danielsen / Photo cred: Pinterest 

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Innsider tips: Leadership

In January our four amazing coaches are giving you some pointers to make this year your best one, and last one up is Anna Johansson.

Anna works as a leadership coach and is passionate about your development. Her coaching is about expanding your comfort zone, getting your relationships to work, reach your goal on work, manage your stress level and become a better leader. Here are her insight tips:

Some people claim that certain people “are born leaders”, and that you have to have some kind of specific trait in your personality to be a good leader. Oh well that is true for some, but the first thing you have to understand about leadership is that when you lead you are doing. That means that leadership is an activity and therefor it is something you can practice. As with everything else some people have a natural talent and some people have to work harder to accomplish their goal. But that doesn’t mean them can’t learn.

Start with yourself
To succeed as a leader you have to start with yourself. If you want to perform you have to take care of yourself. The most basal thing you have to have in order is sleep (6-9 hours/day), eating healthy and exercise regularly. I’m sure most of you guys already know this, but if you lack inspiration in this department, Best of You is a really good webpage for information findings regarding health.

Be authentic
Today it is really important to be authentic. So again, start with yourself. Explore your inner motivation, what drives you and what’s of great significance to you? Know your values and your “why”. There are lots of exercises you can do for personal development, just Google or go to my blog ledarskaphalsa.se.

And I just want to add that the idea that you can be one person at work and another person at your spear time is really outdated. What you do at your leisure does affect your work performance and vice versa.

Dare to be vulnerable as a leader!

Leadership is a partnership
You are not the only one responsible for being a good leader, the people in your group also have a responsibility. If they don´t like something or have an idea, make sure that they dare to speak their mind freely. A lot of people complain about their leader instead of taking action to change things. This is something you should talk with your group about. Let them know that you think this is a partnership and you expect them to be open with you. Dare to be vulnerable as a leader and if you are unsure about anything, say so. The team is there to help, remember it’s a collaboration between you guys.

Make a psychological contract
Expectations are SO IMPORTANT. I highly recommend you sitting down with each one in your group and talk about anticipation. Be clear with your expectation on them, and then let them say what their expectations are on you. Be really clear and discuss what this means for both of you, in everyday work and in the long run. This exercise is also good for your authenticity. It gives the group guidelines for in which way you will behave. When they notice that you actually do what you said you would do it builds trust.

Educate yourself
Make sure to educate yourself on psychology and pedagogics. There are a lot of young professionals having high demands on their leader. They won’t tolerate if you don’t have basic knowledge about leadership, relationship, teambuilding, performing and well-being. There are many blogs, YouTube-videos, TED-talks and books of leadership. Here are some I recommend:

  • Book: “Samtal på jobbet” – Kerstin Ljungström
  • Book: ”Creating Effective Teams” – Susan A. Wheelan
  • Book: “Building agreement” – Roger Fisher and Daniel Shapiro
  • Book: “How to Win Friends and Influence People” – Dale Carnegie
  • Webpage: motivation.se
  • TED-talks: Your body language may shape who you are – Amy Cuddy
  • TED-talks: How to speak so that people want to listen – Julian Treasure

If you want to know more about Anna you can follow her on Instagram or you can visit her webpage or leadthefuture.se


By: Anna Johansson / Photo cred: insightsforleading.com

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Insider tips: courage to start a new chapter

This month our four amazing coaches are giving you some pointers to make this year your best one, and third one up is Christine Nord. 

Christine is a Career Coach with a background in HR & recruitment. Her mission is to inspire and challenge people to find what a truly meaningful career is to them. Whether it’s about how to find meaning in your current job or find the courage to start a new chapter in your life. Here are her five steps to find more meaningful work in 2018:

Are you feeling stuck at work? Or maybe you feel like there should be something more meaningful for you out there? Don’t worry, you are not alone! A lot of people get frustrated from being unhappy at work and there is absolutely no reason to stay put in a job that doesn’t fulfill you.

Accept your feelings
First of all, try to accept your feelings – it’s quite normal and you’re not alone in feeling confused career wise! Most people do it sometime or several times during a lifetime and it’s rather healthy to stop and reflect on your current situation at work. So instead of trying to push these feelings away, welcome them and listen to what they have to say.

Identify your frustration
Has it gone so far that you feel frustrated and maybe even angry or bitter about your current job situation? Believe it or not, that’s great! It might not feel great, but this is what will help you do something about your situation. Make a list of all the things that is frustrating about your current job. Identify the aspects of your current career that does not feel aligned with, who you are and what you are ready to leave behind.

I encourage you to see your frustration as a gift.

Find out where your values ​​and strengths meet
Take some time to reflect on what values are important to you in your life and career. Maybe it’s not status and money that will give you a sense of meaning? Instead, start exploring what values ​​that do matter to you and what strengths you have. What skills and talents have you accumulated during your career so far? Even if you absolutely do not want to work with this anymore, you can safely pick up several of these experiences into a new profession. To do this you can start by asking friends or colleagues about how they perceive you, take online assessments or personality tests or you can start working with a mentor, coach or therapist to start discovering more about who you are and what is important to you.

Take action!
Don’t wait until you have the whole vision ready before you take the first step. A career change can take several months so it’s better to start right away than to wait until you know exactly what you want. Think about what could be your first step to take? For example, you can register for a course and learn something new, contact a friend who inspires you and invite them for lunch or maybe just read an inspiring article. Simply, what practical actions can you do today to get started? Expect to start a snowball effect just starting somewhere.

See your career as a lifelong experiment
In today’s society, we rarely choose one career and then stick to it until it’s time for retirement. You have the possibility to make a new career choice whenever you want! It’s also very common to find multiple and parallel careers, for example you can be both an accountant and a jewelry designer at the same time.

It’s really difficult to try to figure out what kind of career that suits you just by thinking about it, you have to go out and try it! Perhaps you don’t have to switch jobs right away but can find some way to test a new career while still at your current job. If you try to guide yourself by trying to feel as good as possible and find joy in what you do instead of trying to fit in or meet someone else’s expectations, you will have a much bigger chance at finding what a meaningful career means to you. So, go out there and try to look at your career in a more playful and experimental way than many of us do today!


By: Christine Nord 

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A journey to take back her power

Having dealt with several different autoimmune diseases and finding no cure, Helena Önneby took matters into her own hands. On her journey to take back power over her own life she learned to take full responsibility for her health: body, mind and soul.  Which all led to her publishing the book: Pure Personal Power. 

What inspired you to write this book?
I first got inspired to write this book at the age of 13, after having been really sick for a longer period for the first time. I wanted to write a book about my experience to be able to help others in a similar situation feel less lonely. Later on, when I found a way to heal from the root of the problem, I started blogging about my journey. When I quit my corporate job last summer I finally got the time to write a proper book about it and the tools that I want to share with others.

The book is partly about your journey healing from different autoimmune diseases. Tell us a little about that.
For more than 15 years I trusted my doctors above all else and never listened to my own body’s wisdom or what actually made sense. About six years ago I was really sick and had collected six different diagnosis over the years. The doctors started calling me “autoimmune” and I realized there was a link between all of the different diagnosis and wanted to know more. When no one in conventional medicine could answer my questions, I found my own path in functional medicine. So often we shut off the fire alarms (the symptoms) instead of extinguishing the fire (the root cause of the disease). In functional medicine you do just that, find the root cause and start the healing from there.

How would you say this has affected you and this book?
What started as a physical healing journey soon turned in to something much bigger than that. I realized I had to work on my self-worth, dealing with fear and stress, and start focusing on identifying with what was healthy in me and being grateful for that.

What do you hope to achieve with your book?
I hope this book will be what I so desperately needed when I had lost all my power; being caught in victimhood and trusting everyone else but myself. I want it to be a guide for anyone who has lost the power over their life.

Personal power is authentic power. It’s the source of your strength!

What is true personal power to you?
Personal power is authentic power. It’s the source of your strength and you can tap it once you start taking responsibility for your life and everything in it. It lives within all of us and it’s when we live in our power that we can create the life that we truly want and the world that we want to live in.

How do you help others on their journey to find true personal power?
Today I guide people to find their power by coaching, mentoring, teaching and writing. I’m on a mission to help people live up to more of their potential by living a more authentic life.

You are worth living the life of your dreams!

How does self-love and personal power connect?
When we love ourselves we also believe we are worthy. If we don’t believe we are worthy we will always resist our power and block our own self-expression. You are worth living the life of your dreams!

What is true health to you?
True health is holistic health. It’s about body, mind and soul. They are all intertwined, and they need to balance for us to find true health. There is no one size fits all or quick fix, it’s a life long journey of trusting, listening and adjusting when we need too.

Helena is as a coach, writer and teacher on a mission to help you find your personal power. After more than 10 years in corporate HR, she now supports people to live up to more of their potential. Are you curious about how you can take back power over your life? Order the book or book a session with Helena.


By: Henriette Danielsen / Photo cred: Olliver Photographers/ Marie Olliver

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Radiating and healthy skin while working out

Hitting the gym can often lead to dry skin and breakouts. Turns out a few extra moments in the bathroom or locker room can make all the difference. We met with Skin Care Expert Linda Hölling to talk about does and don’ts when it comes to taking care of your skin while working out. 

How can I best prepare my skin for exercise?
The best thing you can do is to take off all your makeup and exercise with clean skin. Because while you´re sweating the skin will absorb the makeup, which can lead to blocked pores. The key is to never “shut” sweat in, especially if you have dry skin. The acid in perspiration can cause irritation and, in worst case, inflammation. The combination of sweat and makeup is therefore a big no-no!

And if you exercise outdoors, it´s important to use SPF. When we sweat, the skin becomes more light sensitive and susceptible to sunburn. This applies to both summer and winter activities.

Is using moisturizer good or bad before sweating? We have heard both.
The skin should always have a moisturizer that works protective when exercising. It can be wise to choose a thinner cream, since fatter creams can make your skin feel sticky when you sweat.

Should I wear a headband to collect the sweat from not dripping down my face?
That is not necessary, since the little time the sweat is on your face is not harmful for the skin. Sweatbands are on the other hand good for avoiding sweat to run into your eyes.

What kind of effect does sweat have on our skin?
During exercise we sweat more than usual, which is an excellent opportunity for the skin to sweat out all the products and toxins that evaporate. Sweat itself cleans the skin in a positive way. However, you helping it on the way with a good peeling and cleansing face mask is always good.

Is it ok to leave sweat on our skin for a prolonged length of time?
When we sweat, salts are forced to lay on the skin which can be dehydrating for the skin. Bacteria in other people’s perspiration can also cause infections. So make sure to wash the skin both before and after exercising and you will be fine.

When we get warm our pores open and let dirt and bacteria out. It is therefore important to clean your face afterwards.

What kind of impact does drinking water have on our skin?
Drinking water is important, especially when we train. The fluid goes out to all the organs and muscles in the body, which again, together with the exercise, has a fantastic effect on our skin. It makes us look healthy and happy!

How should I care for my skin post-workout?
When we get warm our pores open and let dirt and bacteria out. It is therefore important to clean your face afterwards. A facial mask after a workout, while the skin is still warm, 1 or 2 times a week can do wonders. If you have dry skin, you can choose to add a moisturising face mask. To strengthen your skin and get the best results, I recommend that you always have a good skin care routine with cleansing milk, eye cream, serum and day/night cream. This, along with your training is your best investment for a healthy body and skin.

Does and don’ts at the gym?
Keep in mind that machines and spinning bikes can be full of bacteria, so wash your hands before you touch your face while at the gym. And if you have small scratches and wounds, make sure to cover them up while working out with others.

Do you have any questions for Linda, feel free to leave a comment in the comment field below!


By: Henriette Danielsen / Photo cred: Pinterest

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The strive for perfection

Surely you have called or heared somebody be called a perfectionist? This is often taken as a compliment, but in the tendency of perfectionism actually hides insecurity, shame and negative self-image.

Perfectionism is the unrealistic aspiration of a person to be perfect, especially in those aspects of life that are important to him or her. Such a person is chronically burdened by his/hers behaviours.

Perfectionists are never satisfied with themselves, no matter how much success he or she has achieved and how many compliments they may have received. Despite all the efforts and good results, they strive for more. Perfectionists aren’t suitable for team work either, since they don’t trust anyone and always doubt others competence, always convinced that only they can do the work properly.

Nobody is perfect! That’s the truth we all know so well.

At the core of perfectionism there is an attempt by a person who tries to compensate the negative image of themselves. With a thought of being worth enough if only they achieve whatever goal they have set. Unfortunately, no matter how successful and good a perfectionist might be, he or she will never feel better because of just that.

So, what can you do? First of all, perfectionists don’t want to change this tendency, so its important to work towards strengthening the positive self image and accepting and overcoming shame. Working on these aspects helps a person to get rid of the need to do everything perfectly.

Nobody is perfect! That’s the truth we all know so well. And, of course, it’s okay to try to be good at everything we do, but not always strive for perfection when we all know that it does not exist. Do your best and that is more than good enough.


 By: Sonja Josipovic

Be Inspired Featured

Innsider tips: Personal Power

This month our four amazing coaches are giving you some pointers to make this year your best one, and second one up is Helena Önneby.

Helena is a certified Career Coach, HR professional and author of the book Pure Personal Power – Tools to collect on a healing journey. She’s on a mission to help you find your personal power by taking full responsibility for your life and health; body, mind and soul.

Here’s her five tips for more personal power:

Practice self-love
To access your personal power, you need to take full responsibility for your life. This requires a lot of self-compassion. You’re not meant to judge yourself for anything in your life, you’re meant to take ownership of your circumstances so you can find the power you need to change whatever you want or need to change. A self-love practice looks different from person to person, but it could involve writing down things you appreciate about yourself, taking the time to do what your body loves or saying no to others so that you can say yes to yourself.

Shift your focus to what is working
We tend to keep our focus on what we feel lack in our lives. What we don’t yet have, what we wish would be different or what we envy in others. When you shift your focus to all the abundance in your life you not only feel better, you also create the momentum for more of it in your life. Start a simple gratitude practice, where you every morning and every night write down three things that you’re grateful for; my bed, my lungs that breathe, that smile from my friend today, a warm cup of tea, that I feel safe, how my body feels when it moves, fresh flower.

What you focus on grows.

Explore spirituality
Religion sometimes get a bad rep in our society today. But what if you could believe in something bigger than yourself and a meaning to everything that has happened in your life without subscribing to any of the major religions? What does a higher power of your own understanding look like? What if you would allow yourself to explore what that means? Maybe you would find a lot of power in the guidance that is always provided to you and relief in the meaning you see in your challenges in life. It has brought you here, and you are exactly where you need to be right now.

Deal with your emotions
Find the tools that works for you when it comes to dealing with your emotions. We’re feeling machines with an intellect so emotions will for sure effect our lives in major ways. But as long as you’re unaware of them they have power over you. Develop a practice of dealing with and really feeling your feelings, not just thinking them. Flow write first thing you do in the morning, invite your feelings to say what they came to tell you and meditate to create some space between you and them, because, you are not your emotions, you have them.

Take care of your body
We’ve been given one tool to express ourselves in this lifetime, and that is our body. Take care of it the way it takes care of you every day. When you take care of your body and listen to its needs it will serve you. But if you neglect it, its signals and needs it will soon take from your power in order to stay in balance. Nourish it with clean food, move it every day and let it rest when it needs resting.

Personal power is about living up to your own potential so that you can do what you’re here to do and help make the world an even more loving place. Go on your own exploration to tap more of your personal power.


By: Helena Önneby /Photo cred: Pinterest