10 Great Gifts for Geek Girls 2016

Still looking for the perfect gift for your geek girl?  Well I have rounded up a 10 of my favorites, including links so you can order online in time for the holidays.  Enjoy!

1. LifePrint 

Okay so it may not be a wellbeing device, other than it will certainly give you a good serotonin kick from the feel good factor of watching pictures of friends and family come to life and sharing them too.  This cool little device is only available at Apple Stores (LifePrint website is sold out).  At a pretty decent price point ($129.95), don’t forget extra stickyback paper ($49.95 for 110 pack).

2. Docking/Charging Station


Devices and their chargers can be both hard to keep track of and batteries loaded.  I love having a docking/charging station for them when I get home. (If you have kids, you might want two.) This keeps all devices at the ready for my next adventure, but more importantly keeps me present for my family.  There are many different styles, so rather than take my recommendation, look for one that matches.  I like this combo dock and charger to minimize cables.  Wearable tech is great, but most of them still need to be charged fairly regularly.  Until the battery life issue is fixed, at least you know will know where the chargers and devices are in the house. I recommend picking up a pack of short cables so that you can leave them connected at the ready (Lightning for Apple devices and MicroUSB for back up batteries, wearables and other non-Apple devices)

2. Ring.ly


A favorite from last year’s list as a newly launched product.  To Ring.ly, I say, “You’ve come a long way baby.”  They began with a beautiful smart ring and now have a smart bracelet.  More importantly, their notifications are now connected to many more apps, to fit a wide range of needs from rideshare, fitness, dating and more.  Keep that phone in your purse and the ugly black rubber fitness tracker at home.  Control your compulsive phone checking, so you don’t miss the here and now.

4. Cord Keeper


Innovation can be simple to solve the problem of cable tangle.  If you have ever struggled with the tangled cables of your headphones you will love this beautiful leather solution.  Not to mention if you have any challenges with arthritis or poor circulation, they will simplify access to your cords and cables.  You can get them in time to stuff stockings in a five pack for $22.99

5. Stashbandz

stashbandzLast years bomb was the Purse-in-Boots that didn’t deliver (sorry I ever recommended them).  But this year I found a more universal solution.  To keep your smartphones at the ready, how about a garter or boot liner with a pocket instead.  Stashbandz Boot Cuff let’s you have a pocket in any boot. And for those times when you aren’t wearing boots, but rather a dress with no pockets, try the  Stashbandz Garter Purse.  I have been eyeing both for a while, and think it is time to go for both.  With the phone size increasing, most pockets don’t accommodate it anymore, even some purses don’t. Their unisex waist bands can be a great way to discretely carry phones for men, or even a medical device that needs to be worn.

6. Bellabeats Leaf

It is not so glamorous, but the reality is as women our reproductive health has a huge impact on our wellbeing. It should therefore be part of what we can track and understand.  Bellabeats has not only created a great wearable for women from puberty to menopause, but it is beautiful and something you would enjoy wearing even if it weren’t tracking.

7. Quell Wearable Pain Relief

Chronic pain a problem?  I saw this product before they launched and were still testing.  I have been waiting for it to finally come out, and here it is.  If you have chronic pain, this is an exciting innovative non-invasive approach to pain relief without drugs.

8. Muse: Brain sensing headband

I used these devices in my dissertation study on wearables and presence of mind.  People really loved the experience of learning to meditate in a simple way.  My kids even tried them before I distributed them. I noticed a marked change in their ability to focus and filter out distraction.  Perhaps it was a little competitive mindfulness in who get calm their brain and get more birds in the game.  Nevertheless, an interesting tool for those of us with busy brains.

9. Pwr+ Portable Laptop desk stand

portablelaptopdeskWhether moving ourselves from our seats to fight sitting disease or simply relieving tech-neck, changing the angle at which you work and look at your screen is important.  Many chronic pain issues are either caused by or exacerbated by looking at laptops at the wrong angle.  This one even works in bed if you are having a flair up and need to work from there (or want to watch a movie).

10. Gratitude Journal ~ the original! App


I looked at paper journals, and there are several really nice ones.  You can choose those with prompts, inspiring quotes or blank.  Reality struck me that if I was to accomplish a practice of journaling my gratitude it had to be through an app.  If I have learned anything in this last year it is to find my happiness and health in gratitude.  So whatever medium works for you, use it.

Note: If your Geek Girl can wait, my personal favorite is the AppleWatch 2.  Unfortunately, they seem to be hard to come by in time for the holidays.

Have a wonderful holiday season. I hope you find many moments to be present with your loved ones and yourself.  Be kind and practice gratitude and giving, even if all you have to share a smile and laughter.   Enjoy!

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Prioritise Balance

The sun is out here, which is a big thing after the well known dark Winter in Sweden. The result is that people are outside. By nature they are being more efficient and selective about how they use their time online to minimise it. One would think that I would discourage decreasing online interaction. Actually it is quite the contrary. I think we should because quality, not quantity, is what is most effective. The tools we are developing are to achieve just that. Directing us to the sites and resources that are relevant to us to avoid wasted time. For time is what we have the greatest limitation on.

This is the time of year we should be tracking sites for effectiveness (at least in the Northern Hemisphere). If we are getting good traffic now from the North, then we are doing something right. Internet traffic, just like television and demand for films goes down during the Spring and Summer. I certainly hope it doesdrastically, otherwise, health will be the greater problem.

Here are some ways to maximise online effectiveness and minimising the time spent online:

* bike to work
* cut down on the number of social networks active in, but use tracking tools for opportunities to participate when relevant and focus on topic specific, or interest specific communities for here and now
* use file sharing tools (ie. Google docs) to avoid having to distribute
* delegate tasks that others can do more effectively
* turn off the indicator for new messages on your smart phone to concentrate on the tasks at hand, or people that we are meeting with
* use broadcasting tools for updates to avoid re-entry
* get outside and breath fresh air at lunch time (yes, leave the desk for lunch)
* work while your are effective, if you are wasting a lot of time (daydreaming, getting distracted by “interesting websites or news”, chatting) go for a quick walk outside, and then come back with a fresh perspective (coffee may be required).
* take the extra 5 minutes to take the scenic route home (and enjoy it).
* be present

These may sounds obvious, but I find it is helpful to remind myself of these basics regularly. Just like staying focused on a vision, focusing on balance can help maintain the vision.

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Offline experiment

This year for Christmas we gave each other peace. Television, Computers and Blackberries were forbidden for the holiday period. Once something is taken away, we realise how reliant we have become on it. The biggest lesson was not one of panic from disconnect from the world, but peace at reconnect with my family and self. We laughed, we skied, we built Legos, did puzzles, “solved the problems of the world” (or at least talked about them together face to face), we walked and we talked about our hopes and dreams (and listened un-distracted). It was bliss, peaceful and much needed.

Of course, now we are back at work and the in-box is full, the bills are piled high, the day is too short and the wheel still spins. I apologise to anyone that might have taken my silence as a personal shut-out. It was time to re-charge the batteries and allow the flame to kindle so that I may be full of fire and passion to achieve my goals for 2009. Time for reflection is critical for making educated and careful decisions. I am glad to have taken it. But that said, I am glad to be back. I have brought myself back to my personal balance. Now I am ready to roll.

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As an entrepreneur my greatest passion is my work and building 2BalanceU: Women Sharing Wisdom, Resources & Inspiration. Even so, I often struggle with achieving my own balance. In order to feel truly balanced, we must remind ourselves about all the things we are passionate about. Yesterday I smiled the widest grin of pure indulgence as we entered the Vallée Blanche below Mont Blanc from the Italian side in knee deep powder. It was an experience I will never forget. Today, I resume my work set aside while I shamelessly delighted in the beauty of the day and the good fortune to have the chance to be there. My cheeks still tingle from the sun and wind of yesterday and my heart is light. I am reminded that spiritual enlightenment and therapy can often be experienced in the most unlikely places. Now back to work.

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Small Pleasures and Necessities

We think of our day broken down in modules. There are some basics that both are necessity and pleasure. Clothes on our back are a necessity, but can also be a way of expressing ourselves and of communicating. Understanding how to go about the basic movements of our day with a “spring in our step” versus the dragging of feet can make the difference between making or breaking a deal, a relationship or yourself. How we dress that self and how we act within that robe is important to understand as it changes in new surroundings. The cultures of changed communities, countries, life stages and more comes into play.

What does this have to do with 2BalanceU? This all sounds rather abstract, so look at it this way. When retiring we shed our suits and prepare for a “life of leisure”. What do retired women wear in Paris and where to they go? When sent on assignment to Ghana, the climate and community is not suited for the black suit of Geneva. And where do I exercise while there? I’m off to Shanghai for meetings, what should I expect from my hosts, and what should I bring? And of course, what should I wear?

What matters most? The pleasure of feeling comfortable in your situation by being dressed appropriately but with your own twist. The warmth in your body that awakens your day while maintaining your fitness regime, regardless of where in the world you are. The pleasure in receiving a compliment for your consideration in understanding the customs of your hosts. The relief at being forewarned about some surprising customs that might have been misinterpreted.

We look forward to assisting in connecting women for shared personal shopping, cultural clues and exercise hints no matter where in the world you are.

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Wisdom Shared

Pride is perceived in different ways in different cultures. Self confidence could be perceived as pride, and yet, it is not the same. A very wise woman reminded me that by simply lowering one’s chin, a look is changed from pride to confidence. To achieve what comes across as champion of ourselves we do not need to champion others. We can be courageous without being overpowering. Our eyes need to be lifted to prepare us for what lies ahead. When we hold our bodies aligned we find our balance. To achieve this the head need not be tilted back so as to look down upon our view. It is simple, but so important to understand that balance is the center of it all.

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Making a Difference

We all want to make a difference with our actions. Whether the difference goes noticed or not may be where we vary. 2BalanceU is build with the vision of empowering women through knowledge to create stronger communities, families, countries and naturally individuals. This is all about making the world a better place and allowing us to enjoy both the process and the result.

Why then should we not have the opportunity to make a difference in our own way, whether big or small? We enable women to discover the resources available to them and to rediscover themselves as a resource for others. This is critical to the way women interact. When moving through our lives, transitions often lead us to unknowns. We want to connect to other women who can relate and who we can trust in their opinions. Our time is precious, so we want good answers fast. Juggling everything from career, home, aging parents, staying fit and intellectually stimulated, relationships, travel to life’s unexpected occurrences, we can help each other be strong enough to take the dips and enjoy the rises.

As leaders in our communities, we must recognize that whether in a leading or supporting role, our balance is critical. Like an infectious smile, we can teach our communities, both professional and personal, to thrive on balance. With balance, we can achieve far more, with greater satisfaction. It is this balance that we strive for.

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Self Caring instead of Self Indulgence

In most modern societies we are lead to believe that taking time for ourselves is self-indulgent. Recent studies are showing the contrary. Taking time to nurture ourselves is not only necessary but rather not taking the time to do so, is counter productive. Women are often the last person to leave the office, pack their own bags, feed themselves a nutritious meal, go to the doctor, or get sleep. We are running ourselves down and diminishing our ability to be effective in all areas of our lives. Not only that, when we do take the time to do these things, we feel guilty. This is SO wrong. We need to break this cycle.

Not only studies, but also logic proves that when tired and stressed we are ineffective and often not satisfied with our accomplishments. Taking the time to recharge through a fitness routine, a nap, a moment to read for pleasure, or pamper our physical self with a massage to remove the knots of stress is essential. These are not indulgences unless we treat them that way. We feel better after we take the time to do them and are revitalized enough to be effective in the other areas of our lives. It is amazing what one can accomplish with a good night’s rest.

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Women Sharing Wisdom

Round the world we are the same
Inside the different shades and names
Seeking balance in transition
It’s a woman’s constant mission

Our ambitions are unique
In the fortunes that we seek
Often fueled by inspiration
Shared success and new creations

Often too much information
Hard to reach our destination
Connecting peers to what we know
We both seem to learn and grow

Never turn down invitations
They often exceed expectations
If they don’t then nothing’s lost
A moment’s time is all they cost.

We were women before mothers
We were single before lovers
We’re alone before we’re friends
We all have wisdom to lend.

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