Brainz Magazine Exclusive
Rachel Brathen, 31, also known as Yoga Girl, is a yoga-teacher, influencer and best selling author. She has over 2,1 million subscribers on her Instagram and offers one of the worlds largest yoga communities, a place where people can heal, connect and support each other, all with a foundation in yoga.
First of all, how are you? How’s everything going?
– Things are both great and not great, which I’m sure so many people are feeling right now. On one hand, I am spending my days playing with my daughter, doing yoga, tending to my garden, baking, and going to bed nice and early. It’s been so beautiful to be at home with my family. Things at home feel calm, safe and slow. On the other hand, if I direct my awareness away from my little home and start to think of the state of the world I don’t feel okay at all. It’s like I have this lump in the back of my throat and this fear rises in me. I am trying to keep myself educated on the Corona-virus situation without constantly getting sucked in. I’ve had to close my yoga studio and postpone some projects at work. I know this is hitting my team hard, and my community on Aruba hard. I am trying to stay grounded and remind myself that this will pass.
How many businesses/projects do you toggle at the moment? What are the different projects?
– I seem to always have a lot going on! Right now my focus is on my online platform at yogagirl.com. This platform is so important to me. It's a beautiful online space where people can practice yoga and access healing tools right from home. I know that is so needed in the world right now. I’m still working on the 29K app, which is a beautiful space to connect with others, improve your compassion toward yourself and share your feelings from the heart - also so needed right now! I have some other exciting things coming up this year that I’m working on but I can’t mention them just yet or I will ruin the surprise.
You started your Instagram back in 2012, when did it explode and why do you think your account became so popular among people across the world?
– I started my account just to share bits and pieces of my life, as so many others do. In the beginning, I shared pictures of yoga, my dogs and my breakfast, but it wasn’t until I started sharing my honest feelings that my account started to grow. I think a lot of people could relate to what I was saying. Vulnerability always makes you feel not alone, and I think that’s why so many people connected with me.
You’ve turned down offers from big sponsors multiple times, what has been the reason for that?
– I always turn down sponsors if they don’t resonate with me. I want what I share to be honest and authentic. I want to partner with brands that are doing good for the world. It is not about the money for me - it’s about making a difference.
How is your connection to Sweden today? Do you ever miss living there?
– Sweden will always have a place in my heart. I do miss living there every now and then. It is always beautiful to see the changing of the seasons and celebrate our Swedish holidays and traditions. I mostly miss my friends! Now we all have babies about the same age and I wish we could be raising them together. My husband Dennis would love to move to Sweden one day. I would love to find a middle ground of spending part of the year in Aruba and part in Sweden.
What are your personal goals? Where do you see yourself in ten years from now and what have you accomplished?
– When I think of my future I always picture another baby in my life! But I’m not sure if I’m ready for that just yet. I really just hope I am happy in the future. I hope things are calm and stable and I can focus on the things that matter most to me in my life.
If you would give 3 of your best business advice, what would those be?
Don’t doubt yourself. If you have an idea, just go for it. Doubting yourself will help no-one and will only slow down your process!
Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t do it.
Leave time for what really matters.