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Win the BRAND MINDS BOX for DRIVEN WOMEN!

To celebrate International Women’s Day, BRAND MINDS is launching Win the BRAND MINDS Success Box for Driven Women!

The box contains 10 bestselling books by world-changing women authors to support the growth of the winner.

The campaign is not limited to women, men too are invited to join the campaign as the generous box makes for a great gift. Join the campaign.

brand minds campaign win the brand minds success box for driven women

The BRAND MINDS Success Box for Driven Women contains the following books:

1. Becoming by Michelle Obama
2. Daring Greatly by Brené Brown
3. Thrive by Arianna Huffington
4. Blue Ocean Strategy by Renée Mauborgne
5. Educated by Tara Westover
6. The anatomy of love by Helen Fisher
7. Grit by Angela Duckworth
8. The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins
9. Quiet by Susan Cain
10. Build an A-team by Whitney Johnson

Every book in this list was carefully chosen to serve a specific goal: show the story of a driven woman. The winner will get to read ten powerful stories of ten ambitious women and what was like for them to find their way in life.

Becoming is the story of a woman who has steadily defied expectations. A driven woman, says Michelle Obama embraces her roots while finding her voice. She experiences triumphs and disappointments but doesn’t fight them. Instead she allows both experiences to shape her and teach her valuable lessons.

It’s a man’s world out there and women could be tempted to do business the same way men do and become part of the boys’ club to fit in and be successful. Brené Brown argues against it. Women shouldn’t embrace toxic myths such as vulnerability seen as a weakness. The renowned researcher found data that dispelled this myth. In truth, vulnerability is strength and when we shut ourselves off from vulnerability, says Brene in her book Daring Greatly, we distance ourselves from the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives.

What does being successful really mean? We used to measure success by two metrics: power and money. These two metrics are again signals of a testosterone-filled society where competition implies there is only one winner and he or she is expected to sacrifice anything on the way to the top, including health and family life. It’s a toxic approach to living a successful life which Arianna Huffington has come to realize the hard way. Thrive is Arianna’s story of how she turned her life around after suffering from exhaustion and lack of sleep.

Running a successful business has more to do with strategy than having the lowest price. Why do what everyone else is doing and become indistinguishable from the competition? Ambitious and driven women look for a way to stand out in the crowd and be different. That’s what co-author Renée Mauborgne advocates for in Blue Ocean Strategy: the pursuit of differentiation by creating and capturing uncontested market space.

We all know this: women tend to overanalyze, have a high level of self-criticism and set very high standards for themselves looking for perfection. More often than not a woman’s worst enemy is herself. Did you ever hear a man saying he’s not good enough in a situation or for a particular job? I generalize, of course, but men don’t usually overthink, they just go for it whether they’re prepared or not! That‘s what Mel Robbins recommends in her book, The 5 Second Rule: if you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it. The campaign’s winner will have the opportunity to read Mel’s book and transform her life, work, and confidence with everyday courage.

What do all driven women have in common? Passion and perseverance. Pioneering psychologist and researcher Angela Duckworth shows in her book that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a focused persistence called “grit.” Grit is a must-read book for any woman striving to succeed.

Having a thriving and fulfilling life means being successful in both your private and professional life. Successful professional life doesn’t compensate for unhappiness in your private life. It’s like walking with one shoe: eventually your shoeless foot is going to hurt. That’s why driven women should be driven when it comes to their relationships or family life also. Just like we can improve our professional life by learning from experts, mentors or other professionals, we can improve our private life by learning from experienced psychologists and human behaviour researchers. Helen Fisher’s The anatomy of love is a cutting-edge tour de force that traces human family life from its origins in Africa over 20 million years ago to the Internet dating sites and bedrooms of today. It’s a great book that helps us discover more about love, marriage, divorce and the future of sex.

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We cannot choose our parents. As children, we have no say in how our parents parent us. Some children receive the level of nurturing and care they need to become successful adults. Others are not so lucky and spend their adulthood trying to erase the negative influence of an unhappy childhood. It’s an emotional process. In Educated, Tara Westover recounts overcoming a harrowing childhood. Read her book to discover what she had to do to protect her mental health and allow herself to become the best that she could be.

Here’s an interesting statistic regarding introverts: 56.8% of people around the world prefer Introversion. Given such a high percentage of introverted people worldwide, you would think that introverts also filled most leadership roles. You would be wrong. Culturally, we associate successful leadership with a high level of self-confidence. Extroverts express their opinions with great ease and give the impression that they know what they are doing. Thus, extroverts get noticed and get promoted faster than introverts. It’s an unconscious bias which makes the business world lean towards extroverted CEOs. In her book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, author Susan Cain argues that we dramatically undervalue introverts and shows how much we lose in doing so.

What’s the secret to having an engaged and productive team? According to innovation & disruption theorist Whitney Johnson, author of Build an A-Team: Play to Their Strengths and Lead Them Up the Learning Curve, the secret is to develop a learning plan for all employees, no matter where they are on their personal learning curves. Your organization stays competitive in an unpredictable, rapidly changing business environment by designing people’s jobs around the skills they have today as well as the skills they’ll need tomorrow.

It’s a great list of 10 amazing bestsellers!

See here how you can join the campaign.

Top 3 Most Inspiring Women of The Moment

In my previous article, I talked about the women running 9 powerful businesses in Europe and how their leadership improved their companies and society overall.

In this article, I talk about three amazing and wonderful women. They’re among the MOST INSPIRING WOMEN of the moment and each of them has changed the world in a BIG way.

Here is HOW:

Top 3 Most Inspiring Women

OPRAH WINFREY – Connecting deeply with others

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Oprah Winfrey / oprah.com

Although she is one of the most wealthy and influent women of our times, Oprah was born into poverty. She had a hard and difficult childhood: because her mother didn’t have enough money to buy her clothes, she would sometimes go to school dressed in a potato sack. Her mother didn’t provide care and her father was absent. It was her grandmother who saved her by placing her on the right path: education.

Thanks to her love for education, Oprah managed to overcome her hardships and become a successful woman.

Learn more: Oprah – The little girl in a potato sack who became a world-changer

Oprah is a people-person by definition. She has an innate ability to connect with and speak to people from all walks of life. She is a master of the art of interviewing.

Her secret? Making her guests feel perfectly at ease while talking about emotionally-charged topics. Who wants to open up and be vulnerable?! It’s hard enough to do it in front of your family or friends let alone strangers. With Oprah, you don’t feel like you’re talking to a stranger. You feel like you are talking to a person who is genuinely interested in your troubles or hardships.

In the past decades, Oprah has built a media empire. The Oprah Winfrey Show is the highest rated talk show of all time. She is the Chairwoman and CEO of Harpo Productions, a multimedia production company and Oprah Winfrey Network, her own pay television channel. Her net worth is currently standing at $2.6 billion.

Oprah has received numerous awards. Among the most prestigious is the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Obama; also she received honorary doctorate degrees from Duke and Harvard University.

Today, she is an inspiration for over 15.000.000 people from all around the world.

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Let’s build connections instead of walls

The world would be a better place if we all learned what Oprah is teaching us. We are all the same. It is in our power to connect with each other. It only takes genuine interest and empathy in the other person.

What if we put our smartphone away when our partner talked to us? Devote all our attention to them and really listen?

How would our lives change if we built connections instead of walls?

How would society improve if we achieved strength by being vulnerable?

A world like that is possible.

Let’s start with the person in the mirror.

MELINDA GATES – Empowering women, reshaping societies

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Melinda Gates / executivesclub.org

Melinda Gates says that words like rich and poor don’t define who we are as human beings.

She rejects the American way of dividing the world into first-world countries and third-world countries because it robs the people living there of their humanity.

“Humanity in the abstract will never inspire you in the same way as human beings you meet,” she says.

Since starting Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2001, Melinda has been travelling with her husband to countries in Africa and meeting with people in villages and small towns because all lives have equal value.

That is the vision Melinda and her husband are working towards. And a way to achieve this vision is by empowering the poorest, especially women and girls because women and girls have a unique power to reshape societies.

She believes we are finally creating the scientific and technological tools to turn the world into a brotherhood and a sisterhood.

When you invest in a woman’s health and empowerment, it has a ripple effect, helping families, communities, and countries achieve long-lasting benefits.

Melinda Gates

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is reported to be the largest private foundation in the world, holding $50.7 billion in assets.

The primary goals of the foundation are, globally, to enhance healthcare and reduce extreme poverty, and, in the U.S., to expand educational opportunities and access to information technology.

For her services to philanthropy and international development, she received various recognitions and awards among which the honorary Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

In 2017 she was awarded the Otto Hahn Peace Medal 2016 of the United Nations Association of Germany (DGVN), Berlin-Brandenburg, “for outstanding services to peace and international understanding” in the historic Berlin Town Hall.

Building a sisterhood by empowering ourselves and the women around us

As women, we struggle with so much in our everyday lives.

Just because we are women the world seems entitled to tell us how we should look and behave, how to dress, that we should fit a certain beauty standard to be successful in life.

The same goes for our professional lives. When a man is working hard to climb up the corporate ladder and advance his career, everyone calls him ambitious. When a woman is doing the same, she is called cold-hearted and career-focused. An assertive man comes off as confident and worthy. An assertive woman is called dominant, bossy and not nice. It’s workplace gender bias and it is toxic.

On top of that, there are hardly any women in the world who haven’t experienced a #metoo situation of any kind.

Before we expect the world to change, let’s change the way we see ourselves and each other.

Enough with the toxic thoughts that you are not good enough, not pretty enough, not smart enough!

Stop being ashamed of who you are!

Build your confidence and then help the woman next door build hers.

ARIANNA HUFFINGTON – A successful life is a thriving life

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Arianna Huffington / bandt.com.au

In 2007 Arianna Huffington was working tirelessly in her role as editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post. One day she collapsed, hit her head and broke her cheekbone on the way down. The reason was not that she had a brain tumour or a heart disease. As she later realized, she suffered from burnout, exhaustion and sleep deprivation. Essentially she suffered the consequences of leading a toxic lifestyle. It was a painful wake-up call but she understood the message. She decided she would no longer subject her body to this level of stress. But to achieve that she had to change her life around.

What is a good life? What is success? These are some of the questions that Arianna began asking herself at that moment. She came to realize that our society defined success by two metrics: money and power. But just as you cannot sit on a two-legged chair, you cannot view success as only money and power. At some point, you will lose balance and fall off.

Arianna believes in adding a third metric to the definition of success: thrive.

To thrive means to take care of our wellbeing, to take care of our health, body and mind, to get the required amount of nighttime sleep.

Arianna Huffington co-founded The Huffington Post in 2005 and served as its editor-in-chief until 2016 when she stepped down from her role.

She is now dedicated to growing her new company, Thrive Global, a platform focused on health and wellness information. 

In 2012, Arianna Huffington became a LinkedIn Influencer, writing about success and sharing professional insights for 8 million followers.

In 2016, she was named to Oprah Winfrey’s SuperSoul100 list of visionaries and influential leaders and received an honorary degree from Colby College in Waterville, Maine.

She has an estimated net worth of $50 million.

Less Wonder Woman, more self-care and joy

Oh, it’s so easy for women to go down the path to exhaustion! We undertake so many tasks on a daily basis, at work and at home. We do everything for everyone! We cater to everyone’s needs but our own.

We are juggling multiple and often conflicting roles – super mom, super wife, super daughter, super sister, super friend, super career woman, super homemaker, super colleague, super employee. It’s called Wonder Woman Syndrome. It stems from low self-esteem and self-worth and leads to sleep deprivation, anxiety, depression, eating disorders and eventually burnout.

Arianna advocates for making small changes with the purpose of improving your life. How about charging your phone during the night in a room outside your bedroom? Checking your emails only after you had breakfast, talked to your husband over the morning coffee and drove your kids to school?

These changes are very small but they will improve your life immensely.

And when women thrive, societies thrive.

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