You got the craft?

I didn’t have to be, given the gift to rip

I’ll never master me, I know that it’s from Him

or Her or It, dimensions that sit

Waitin’ to sift through me, I fall short, still it hits me swift

I didn’t have to see, I coulda hit the lick

I coulda drifted it quick, I coulda quit so quick

It’s really a trip, I guess I was picked

I don’t know what I did to deserve a ride like this (Damn!)

I didn’t have to eat, I coulda been so thin

I didn’t have to be, quoting these sentences

I didn’t have to reap, the work put in but then

even the work in itself was such a blessin

I didn’t have to see, the planet lip to lip

I didn’t have to make, a livin’ writ to writ

I didn’t have to dream and then begin to live it

And for that, I vow to be a vessel

This Craft, this beat, this rhyme, this vibe

This style, they say music gives new life

From a source inside that is forever flowin’

This stage, this mic, this crowd, this show

This life, I’ve been given a gift tonight

And for that, I vow to be a vessel

I give thanks for my rhymin’ ability

I don’t front like it’s not a responsibility

I can open a mind, if the youth will listen to me

I’m not goin’ to front, like I’m on some killin’ spree

and as hard as the times are, God is livin’ through beats

that come not from minds, but that travel through spiritual reasons

Some of the time, I feel like, it’s not even me

No mon-ey can buy gateways to infinity

Still I’m hun-gry to shine, when I know I should let it be

I want but I have, every single thing that we need

So help me align self with soul and then I’ll be free

To sculpt and design verbal styles and experience freedom

“Let go, do what’s in front of you”

“Then, let go, then do what’s in front of you”

This ain’t leisure, although it feels

It is a duty, a way to live, another way to give

Another way to just, have communion

With the source of the sun and moon and, a way to pay the bills

Displayin’ skills, I take it REAL serious

The vibe’s so mysterious, not just one more day to kill

..and I could lose my connection

if I do not respect it enough, fffade away it will

Day to day it gives energies

That replenish me, if I believe and I say it will

and act on it, ’cause action is the key to freedom

Only way to be a leader, lead by the way you live


What is the story you’re telling yourself? Which story are you ready to give up everything else for?

The other night, I watched the movie Juno, again. It's a beautiful movie with a great soundtrack and some really cool acting, especially by Ellen Page playing Juno. If you haven't seen it, it's a sure feel-good film to watch. 

At the turning point of the film, Juno is frustrated by a break-up and asks her dad whether it's truly possible for people to stay together for ever. She is desperately calling for a such story to believe in. In the end of course, being a feel-good movie, it that is also that story which plays out. 

In the past year, I spent a lot of time looking at the story that people tell themselves and each other within an organizational context. It struck me that these stories people tell are terribly powerful. They shape individual behaviour and they shape organizational behaviour. 

I also realized, that deciding to go back to Sweden was a choice based on that I needed a break from the story that I was telling myself at that point. Likewise, now going to India is part of a story that I'm hoping will unfold.

Some stories in our lives, thus, brings great positive value. Some stories holds us back. Many stories we let ourselves be told to believe – such as many of the ones we see on TV or in movies.

So, how to relate to Juno's story? It is one that many of us so desperately wants to tell ourselves. That we'll find someone to stay with forever. It's clearly possible. Is it something worth changing our other stories for? Is it something worth giving up our stories for?

What do you think? What stories do you burn for? What stories would you sacrifice everything else for? Is it the same as Juno's?

What leading a youth organization can look like


People spending all their breaks working on creating exchange experiences for people all around the world 🙂

Virtual leadership development workshops – join online at AIESEC IC Live, starting from 10:30 GMT+5.5!

Today I'm part of the hosting team for a virtual leadership development agenda that is going to happen connected to the AIESEC International Congress in Hyderabad. There are going to be several sessions on youth leadership and they're open for anyone to join.

The agenda is as follows:
  • 10:30 GMT+5.5 – Leading Yourself
  • 11:30 GMT+5.5 – Global Connections
  • 14:30 GMT+5.5 – Leading change
  • 16:00 GMT+5.5 – The Experience of Leaders
The sessions are going to be hosted by a group of individuals dedicated to leadership and change and I think it's going to be a pretty interesting day. Joining is easy, just go to and click "IC Live".

Dare to have an opinion

As usual Seth Godin has a great point. One thing that I have truly seen that I value in people are that they dare to have opinions about things, real topics where difference of opinion matters and where being wrong carry weight – being willing to put yourself on the line, stand out and have a unique opinion.

Philip Zimbardo: The Secret Powers of Time

Do you remember the good old times or do you focus on regret?

Rather, you might be hedonistic or fated?

Or, do you trust in the future?

I find the times that my mind is pre-occupied with the future I feel better and I am more successful.

Tackling the Big Hairy Questions

Yesterday I spent the day connecting around the topic of entrepreneurship with other delegates and corporate partners of AIESEC in a space we created called “Youth to Business Forum”. We spent the day in open space discussions, panels and workshops to evolve our understanding of entrepreneurship and develop the actions that we need to take to develop entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship in our organization and societies.

Together we asked questions such as how we could support the creation of more entrepreneurs, how we could create businesses with social impact, what our role could be in transforming education, technology and the world through new business ideas, and many more like that.

After all these discussions – our chair of the conference raised an important challenge. He pointed out that we often looked at these discussions in the strict context of AIESEC and AIESEC’s relevance. This is important, and it’s crucial that we see it from our organization’s perspective, however it’s not nearly enough. We need, especially as young people, to be able to tackle the big hairy questions – the questions about how we will create a radically better world, the questions about the revolutions we need and can create.

Although we need to start from individual, organizational and national perspectives we cannot find appropriate solutions unless we really dare to look at these issues from a global scale. This goes for both AIESEC and everyone else. We need to open the spaces in our family dinners, at our company lunches, throughout our conferences, meetings and seminars to discuss these issues. By not shying away from these issues we are taking the first steps to creating the actions needed to change our societies.

Being a proactive AIESECer (wink ;)) – I sat down att the end of the day and reflected on what this day actually meant to me and how I could bring these thoughts into practice. The commitment that came out of this was to use my role, as president of my AIESEC country (Sweden), to open these spaces both within our organization but also with partners – we will strive to arrange a similar forum in Sweden and to bring these discussions to businesses and youth in Sweden. Furthermore I will work with my team to increase the impact of the experience for our members who are leaving our organization (we call it “heading for the future”) so that they more clearly can see the connection between what they’ve been doing in AIESEC and the actions that they can take in the future to have a positive impact.

That being my commitment – I also want to you with the challenge of deciding how you could act in your company, organization or community to raise these discussions & create actions from these.

To follow AIESEC’s international congress and the questions we raise – check out our virtual presence at

The value of believing

Throughout the next weeks I’m attending an international conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This conference brings together the leadership of AIESEC in the whole world – over 500 delegates in 107 countries. During the first few days of this experience we’ve covered topics such as what leadership is, how our organization creates leadership and where we want to go in the future. One of my reflections that I had throughout the sessions was the importance of believing.

Many of us here are leaders who have been in the organization for a number of years – we’ve seen the ups and downs, and – particularly – we’ve see the things that recurringly don’t work. When faced with these it’s easy to become cynical and close your mind. However, the only real way to create change is to find a solution together and then taking the leap of faith to trust in that solution. Only when we do that (and we might not be successful immediately – meaning we need to rinse & repeat…) will we be able to find the truly transformative solutions we need. I see this happening not only in AIESEC – but in many other organizations & even societies as a whole. It’s really valuablet to gain the ability to handle and counter these feelings – both within ourselves, but also within any organization we join. It is something I intend to practice all throughout this conference and my next year in AIESEC.

The Art of Reflection

I find regular reflection being one of those habits that are really helpful, even crucial once you practice – but quite hard to implement. It’s a bit like exercise – when you need it the most, in busy or stressful times, you tend to practice it least. When I do reflect regularly I find that I come up with much more new ideas, I feel more in control over what I’m doing and more content with the thoughts I’m having.


The first step is just making space for it, having time to sit down and look through what you’re doing, what you’re thinking and what you’re feeling. This is hard enough – when don’t you have a million other pressing things to do? For me, I’m trying to at least make it a part of my weekly review. Then I know I have a time that I’ve set aside when I’m going to do it.

The second step is knowing how to do it. Some people I’ve worked with have found it really hard to sit down and think about these things, they schedule the time for reflection, but then sit down and have nothing to write about. One way to get around this is to think of a question you’d like to ask yourself, and then reflect on that question. If it’s still empty, you can make the question more and more narrow until you’ve got something tangible enough for you to think about.

The third step is having the tools to make it easy to keep the habit. I find blogging being one such tool, I also would like to use Twitter as a sort of micro-reflection throughout the day.

Another good habit that many have (especially girls are good at this!) is journaling. I always had a hard time journaling, until I began the practice of journaling around a question, topic or issue that was relevant to me. This made journaling make a lot more sense to me.

Thinking actively about trying to have these three steps in place I’ve found reflection becomes an easier practice to implement and keep.

Photo by johnrite.

Having the pain of too much choice

In my previous post about choice I wrote that many people like me have the luxury of choice in an amazing amount of areas. However, the flipside is that we get too much choice and we get to experience the pains of having all these choices!

The result is that we get completely paralyzed facing all these choices – choices that sometimes are so complex that we don’t have the knowledge, skill or time to be able to figure them out.

In my generation you can clearly see this when it comes to careers, all this choice – instead of making people choose radically different things from each other – leads many young people to resorting to simple templates when thinking about their careers. Instead of using the fact that we in essence have the choice of choosing what we’re going to devote our lives to freely, opting for the choices that most resonate with our goals allowing us to have the most impact, we make low-impact “easy” choices based on what others do.

I recently came across some interesting thinking in this area that I wanted to share. The first is a book called Nudge and it deals with ways of relieving the burden for paralyzed choosers and ensuring that by simple methods we can be nudged into taking better choices. Nudges makes the “best” option a little bit easier to make (while not prohibiting you to make any other choice you might like) through for example providing intelligent defaults or making long-term results clearly visible (think about how many people are potentially susceptible to diabetes, but still chooses high sugary foods, thus increasing their risks…).

The book mostly looks at things like choosing your health care insurance, saving for your retirement and so on, but the pattern they describe holds very true also for what we do with our lives and how we work towards our goals. In this area, just as when it comes to choosing the right pension plan, we could use a little bit of a nudge. I think if we implemented more nudges in our everyday life focused around working towards our goals & aspirations or taking up impacting experiences, we’d probably live better lives.

The other source of inspired thinking in this area is TED-speaker Barry Schwartz (if you haven’t checked out TED, do so now!) who talks about this topic and on how the idea in our (western) society we can maximize happiness by maximizing choice is deeply flawed. His speech is well-invested 20 minutes. Overall I think that his points, combined with the approaches of the book Nudge makes sense – and I am certainly going to spend more time thinking of how I could “nudge” myself and others around me into making better (as viewed by myself & them) choices about sustainability, personal goals and personal development.