Thinking Bigger Allowed One Small Business Owner to Achieve Her Dream

By: Meredith Flory

Part of healthy leadership is being healthy in other areas of your life. Setting boundaries and reasonable expectations, creating a healthy work environment, and fostering other important aspects of leadership are easier to model when you are taking care of your own well-being outside of work.

Christy Miu is the owner of Healing Hippies at Creekside in McMinn County, Tennessee, where she not only practices healthy leadership as the head of a small business but also helps her customers find their best wellness practices. Miu is a licensed massage therapist, Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (E-RYT) 500 and meditation teacher, Reiki master and teacher, Warrior Goddess Facilitator, and personal wellness coach. She is also a mother, grandmother, and member of the community where her business is based. After she had started her own yoga journey to help herself, she shares, “I saw the need in the community for what I had to offer.”

She explains that while there are many places to do yoga as an exercise, “There is more than stretching our muscles. We need to learn to breathe correctly and how to come out of our toxic headspace.” As she looked to start her business, she was not sure a yoga studio would survive on its own in her location, so she started brainstorming what other services she could offer that paired well with yoga. She says, “I had wanted to be a massage therapist when I was younger, and I thought they would work well together.”


2022-01-04T15:39:44-05:00December 28th, 2021|


3 Tips to Cultivate Healthy Business Partnerships

By: Julie Kirchner

“I can do things you cannot, you can do things I cannot; together we can do great things.”
– Mother Theresa

In your journey of leading a team or a small business, have you ever entertained the thought that you could accelerate growth by embracing a business partnership? We hear you—it sounds challenging. But paving a path into new partnership territory can also come with substantial rewards like diversified skill sets, access to new networks, and newly discovered bandwidth (brain gold) for strategic planning. You likely have a dream partnership already in mind. So, how do you set the stage for a healthy partnership so you can stress less and grow more?

  1. Make a contract. Ground rules set everyone at ease. Establishing even a simple contract demonstrates that you take the partnership seriously and sets a standard for professionalism. Formstack and HelloSign are two resources that offer free trials and monthly plans starting at $15-16/month while giving you access to contract templates and mobile document e-signing capabilities.
  2. Model healthy communication practices, and others might just follow your lead. In the early stages of a partnership, devote ample time to onboarding. Use this time to clarify expectations and preferences, identify and model important boundaries, and ensure you are on the same page at each step. This time investment can help reduce stress later by preventing miscommunication, averting unrealistic timelines, and avoiding unmet expectations. Provide an approachable framework for your accessibility and set a positive and responsive tone.


2021-12-30T12:36:08-05:00December 28th, 2021|


Healthy Partnerships and the Business of Meetings

By: Nicole Keeny

“Here’s the long and the short of it. I hate hockey, and I don’t like kids.” So says new coach Gordon Bombay in the cult classic movie The Mighty Ducks. A similar sentiment seems to sum up how most people feel about work meetings: I hate meetings, and I’m often not fond of the people in them.

Business leaders agree, however, that face-to-face meetings continue to be one of the best ways to motivate and lead. Meetings are inevitable, and often partnerships are fostered or damaged as a result. Whether you are the leader of the meeting or simply an attendee, you play a role in the partnership. How can you contribute to its health?

  1. Arrive promptly. The meeting is set to begin at 10:00 a.m. Sure, swinging in at 9:59 is technically arriving on time, but you are then left with no opportunity to connect with the other meeting participants prior to getting down to business. Building healthy partnerships starts in the moments before the meeting begins, where you can chat about your families, show an interest in one another’s lives, and generally be human. Yes, that will require talking rather than checking your email in the minutes before the meeting. Yes, you may need to break the silence of the room to start an actual conversation. Yes, if you are leading the meeting, you will need to be prepared early so you are free to focus on attendees as they arrive. We believe in you.


2022-03-01T10:08:54-05:00December 28th, 2021|


Services Provided: Business Growth and Content Creation

“I have been working with Powerhouse for the last several months on numerous projects. It has been amazing to find such versatility and knowledge within one company. It has truly been invaluable to have so many experts in various fields all in one place who come together to develop our vision. The professionalism, attention to detail, quick turnaround time, and understanding of all facets of nonprofit requirements as well as business development have made Powerhouse such an instrumental part of our success making a difference in our community.”

– Amanda Thurn, Program Director, Space Coast Basket Brigade

2021-12-28T16:29:01-05:00December 28th, 2021|


There’s an old saying that leaders are born, not made, but that’s not strictly accurate. Leadership skills can be developed over time, and part of being a good leader is helping to foster and develop those skills in your employees. For a list of ways in which you can encourage leadership development in your company, check out this Forbes Human Resources Council article on supporting leadership development at every level.

Want to overhaul your own leadership skills to develop healthier strategies? The Business Journals Leadership Trust has curated a list of resources specifically designed with you in mind. Learn how to identify what you’re doing right, what you can improve, and what not to do by checking out their suggestions.

Interested in bringing healthier partnerships to your business? It all starts with trust and finding partners who share your values. The CPA Leadership Institute reports seven characteristics you should consider when deciding with whom to partner.

Or maybe you’re just getting to the point in your small business journey where you’re contemplating building some partnerships. Not sure how to go about finding the right partners? Or want suggestions on the steps you should take? BoostBlog has an article you should check out.

As always, Powerhouse Planning has resources and services to help. We can assist with strategic planning, professional and process development, leadership mentoring, and much, much more. Contact us today to see how we can help you create the healthy leadership skills and partnerships you need.

Have you . . .

Checked out Powerhouse online recently? Our website has undergone a face-lift! (And it’s more than “skin deep.”) New, FREE resources, case studies, and more can help you determine how Powerhouse can best help you. Not only are we constantly updating our website, but we’re also ever-present on social media. Check us out on Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube. You never know what we have going on there. Who knows, you may even get a chance to interact with our president! She’s currently scheduling one-on-one, 30-minute sessions where she will speak directly to you and offer advice and mentoring on any of those thorny business issues you might be facing.

2021-12-28T16:26:19-05:00December 28th, 2021|


Me Before Mom: How One Woman’s Desire to Help a Friend Led to Greater Outreach

By: Julie Clark

“There was a ‘me’ before there was a ‘mom.’” This statement encapsulates the lifestyle and message of Bert Anderson, creator of her lifestyle blog entitled Me Before Mom. Anderson is a wife as well as a mother of three, and her mission is to equip fellow mothers as they adjust to parenting and figure out how to keep a sense of self while in the throes of motherhood. We sat down with Anderson to get to know her better and to glean some of her wisdom.

Tell us a bit about yourself, your life, and how Me Before Mom (MBM) came to be.

My dad is retired Air Force, so that makes me a military brat. It’s a label I wear proudly because it dramatically defines how I view life, how I process problems and any kind of uncomfortable situation. I met my husband in college in Minnesota; he’s from Minnesota, and well, you can’t take a Minnesota boy out of Minnesota, so we’ve been here ever since. I have three kids, Brennan (13), Kendall (10), and Keira (7). I am a social media manager, that’s my consistent paying job. I like being able to figure out how to create a community for a brand without being the face of the brand. I have my website,; a podcast, Me Before Mom, with Matriarch Digital Media; and I’ve self-published a book, Me Before Mom: Putting Your Oxygen Mask on First.

The concept of MBM came up when I watched my friend go through a divorce. She had been married for 20 years and was a stay-at-home mom for 16 of those 20 years. When her husband asked for a separation, it came out of left field. She found herself alone, having to figure out a career and starting over in her 40s. I remember her telling me she felt like she had given so much to her family that she didn’t know who she was anymore. I took that in and started looking to friends and family members who had older kids leaving the nest. How did the moms feel? There seemed to be a pattern of feeling lost for many women, and I didn’t want that to happen to me. I didn’t want to get to the end of Keira’s high school career, look at myself in the mirror and say, “I have no idea what I like or what I do or anything anymore.” The only way to prevent that from happening was to start practicing this concept of “me before mom” because there was a “me” before there was a mom and there will be a “me” after the kids leave. (more…)

2021-12-28T16:29:19-05:00December 28th, 2021|


Developing healthy leadership skills and forming healthy partnerships can mean the difference between mediocre and phenomenal. Without a healthy leadership style and without consistent, targeted strategy for building healthy partnerships, you could be costing your business growth and success. Powerhouse Planning is uniquely qualified to help you assess your leadership and partnership strategies to help you develop the business approach that is right for you.
If you’re lost on how to take your partnerships or leadership to the next level, Powerhouse Planning can help. We offer a wide range of services that can help you enhance your business. Contact us today for details.

2022-02-25T14:28:51-05:00December 28th, 2021|

New Powerhouse Team Member

Crystal Toy is an ambitious and energetic Coast Guard veteran turned digital marketing specialist. She is a Coast Guard spouse and mom of two with several specialized college degrees, bringing over a decade of technical expertise to the Powerhouse lineup of independent contractors. Her robust career experience in learning and development, event coordination, and project management is a powerful addition to any team.

After transitioning out of the Coast Guard to support her husband’s active-duty career, she has remained committed to developing her multifaceted toolbelt by serving in several creative volunteer roles such as event coordinator, photographer, and social media manager. Fueled by her dedication to lifelong learning, and several professional certifications later, she has made an impressive pivot into the world of digital marketing, with specializations in project and social media management.

Crystal is a goal-oriented team player with a creative mind who thrives under pressure and is semper paratus (always ready) to roll up her sleeves and get the job done. In her free time, she enjoys traveling with her family, staying active outdoors, and seeking out the best Baja-style tacos wherever she ventures.

2021-12-21T14:06:52-05:00December 20th, 2021|

New Powerhouse Team Member

Beth Soto was born and raised in a small town near the north Georgia mountains. She attended North Georgia College and State University for two years before transferring to Lanier Technical College where she studied interior design and architectural drafting. She graduated in 2007 and worked in both residential and commercial construction as an architectural drafter, estimator, and project manager for 15 years. She is the current owner and lead designer of Coastal Peach Interiors in Melbourne, FL. Beth and her husband, Steve, returned to Melbourne after Steve’s military retirement in 2020 following his 22-year military career. They were married in 2013 and have a blended family of five children, Hunter, Chris, Emma, Savannah, and Dean. They enjoy traveling and making memories together as a family as well as playing board games and spending time by the pool.

Beth has admired the Powerhouse Planning team and their work for years. She is excited to join Powerhouse Planning as an architectural drafting and design consultant and is looking forward to being part of such an amazing group of people.

2021-12-21T09:14:37-05:00December 14th, 2021|

New Powerhouse Team Member

Nicole is a milspouse of over 12 years and mom of a daughter, Itahlee, and two Dobermans, Luther and Lexie. Along with a love of traveling and exploring the country, which has been easily done as a Coastie wife, Nicole enjoys creating memories with her family. She grew up in Pennsylvania, but throughout their Coast Guard career, she and her family have spent time in New England, Texas, NYC, and NorCal. Professionally, Nicole has a passion for business, leadership, achieving goals, supporting a positive people experience, and organization. (Yay for spreadsheets!)

Nicole earned her B.S. in accounting and her M.S. in organizational leadership with a focus in human resources. She brings a background in retail management, both big box and specialty, as well as in recruiting and training in early childhood education to the Powerhouse Planning team. Nicole views the challenges faced as a career-driven milspouse to be developmental opportunities and is grateful to put that experience and drive to work for her clients at Powerhouse!

2021-11-02T02:17:29-04:00November 2nd, 2021|
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