For my skimmers, here’s what you’ll find in this post: one look (featuring leggings from How We Soul) + one life lesson. This one’s on why you should try adding some soul as you face your struggles.
How We Soul Stardust Leggings ($58) // Cobalt Katie Medium Satchel from 88 Handbags ($50) // Gracie Mansion Dramatic Bib Necklace from Carolee Jewelry (ON SALE NOW – $75) // Bryant Park Stud Pierced Earrings from Carolee Jewelry ($45) // Similar Blouse from Last Call by Neiman Marcus (ON SALE NOW – $39) // Aldo Shoes (Similar from ASOS – $66) // Styled by Christina Imberlina
I know it’s hard.
Shit happens and the first thing we ask ourselves is “why is this happening to me”.
We aren’t really looking for an answer. We’re playing the victim.
But this moment is just one thread in your story.
Occasionally, there are excess strings. Ones that we can cut off. Ones that can be removed without the garment unraveling.
The tough threads, the ones that take the most of ourselves to weave through, are not the ones we can live without, they’re actually the ones we need the most.
You’re going to stitch this thread together with others and a great strength will be achieved.
Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow or next week, but soon, you’re going to see how necessary this particular thread is. It’s going to reinforce others. It’s going to help you connect the fabric. And when you’re done, you’re going to have something more beautiful than you could have ever imagined.
But in order to make that garment, you have to own your threads. You have to use them to support your strength. If you cut them out or throw them away, you’re going to end up with holes and separation in your masterpiece.
Keep sewing, and do it with soul.
The more intention you can weave in with each thread, the sooner you see your purpose, which will make it easier to keep sewing in those times when you aren’t entirely sure what you’re designing. The more intention you approach life with, the easier it is to keep moving.
Activewear startup, How We Soul, is business with intention as inspiring as I’ve ever seen it. The reason I am confident How We Soul will be so successful is because Co-Founder Tasha Kendall has added soul behind every component of the brand (and also because she uses her own story to support her business efforts, AND it involves a pineapple so you have to read about it). In fact, in our recent interview with Tasha, we learned that’s exactly where the name came from!
We were discussing our desire for the brand to have depth, meaning, and heart; that we wanted to encourage people to put their soul into how they roll. Suddenly anytime I would ask myself why we made a decision a certain way, I’d think “because it’s how we soul”, and the name just stuck.
But the soul doesn’t end in the name. It’s in:
1.) The product – the soft, smooth, buttery, “I never want to take these off” fabric is composed of EcoPoly fibers which use 70% less water, 70% less heat, and 70% less energy to create than regular polyester.
These are the only yoga pants (that aren’t boring solid black) you can literally get away with wearing to a business meeting and then to class on your mat. In fact, I went straight from “polished New York Fashion Week covering blogger” to “yogi fitting in practice alongside the river” in a matter of seconds. This was without a doubt the most comfortable look from the week! I’m always a little iffy about wearing bold patterns, but since these are cut and designed with intention behind them, they are made to flatter! I especially loved that these leggings hugged and supported my curves in all the right places. I’m wearing Stardust in these photos (one of 7 styles in the first line recently launched!).
Side note: If you haven’t clicked on one of the links yet, do it. I have to take another second to applaud Tasha for using models of all shapes and sizes in her photos! So refreshing to see real women flaunting a product like this!
2.) Manufacturing – Manufactured in Montreal, employees are paid fair, above minimum wages where breaks and internships are also monetarily compensated for. Despite being a startup, How We Soul takes pride in investing in those who are a part of the creation process.
3.) Impact – Pants with a purpose! Giving time is often more impactful than donating money (and this is one of the reasons How We Soul really caught my eye). Not only does the brand donate a portion of profits to the Botswana Orphan Project, both co-founders dedicate time to the organization and get their hands dirty as well by providing strategic guidance and assisting with volunteer coordination.
The Botswana Orphan Project is a heartening organization making incredible strides to help vulnerable children in Botswana. To put things into perspective, in 2005 the life expectancy had dropped to 35 due to the AIDS epidemic, leaving behind approximately 60,000 orphans needing love, care, safety, education, and food. Learn more about BOP and How We Soul’s involvement here.
I’ve only recently connected with Tasha, but let me tell you, I can see the soul behind every social media post, every connection she makes, and every consumer she serves. Her social media engagement has steadily grown and it’s crystal clear she’s become a magnetic rockstar at pulling people in to her community which equals loyalty and sustainable business development.
Take a page from Tasha’s book and add soul to the struggles you know will be hard. Giving your struggles life and adding meaning behind them is an effective formula every single time for getting through them. When you add soul to things, you inject your heart instead of just your brain.
Even though we tend to start our businesses with heart, the soul often gets lost. That’s why marketing and branding can be so difficult – and why too often it turns into a salesy, sloppy mess – we forget that we are humans trying to make a connection with humans. And that, Gem, has to be done with heart, with soul.
By approaching life with soul, you make a human connection between yourself and those you serve.
Rockstar status aside, like all of us, I know there are days when Tasha struggles too. In her interview, she shared:
So often we take criticism (or anything we deem a “failure”) towards our business to mean we aren’t good enough or that there are cracks in the foundation of our idea. Instead, struggles should be looked at as they are, opportunities to get stronger. Refinement and growth rarely take place when things are going smoothly. Let doubt be what sparks your creativity.
How We Soul isn’t just another activewear product. It’s not another online store for you to turn to when you need retail therapy. It’s an opportunity for you to see the impact soul can have and inspiration to integrate it into your own life, career, and brand.
“It’s a way of living, of intentionally bringing beauty to the mundane, seeing possibility within hardships, and accepting any reason to have a good laugh.”
Intentionally living doesn’t come easy and Tasha’s opened her heart and community to share ideas and give encouragement along the way. To see exactly what I’m talking about and get involved, follow How We Soul on Instagram, Facebook.
Now it’s your turn. Tell me in the comments below…
How are you going to add more soul into your brand?
Stay tuned for details on these quality, affordable, environmentally friendly bags from 88 Handbags coming later this week! <3
**This post may contain affiliate links and sponsored content because we all have to pay our bills and I’d rather keep creating awesome content for you than get a real job. All opinions are my own.**
Photos: Alexandra Barone