I continue to meet with many people that are exploring race and equity. These are people wanting to do good. They are people feeling the challenge, the necessity, the complexity, the history, the heart yearning, the grief — all of it. Individually, yes, but particularly collectively.
It’s true for me that I don’t really know where to stand in all of that. I keep experimenting. I keep sharing what is honest for me. I keep trying to get down and in, far enough to find principle. I often feel clunky in the stories I offer intending to be transparent in my learning. And then uncomfortable.
I’m glad for kindness and patience with others. I’m glad to be growing this in myself — I think that is happening. I’m glad for Quanita, who journeys deeply to find the principles and the bridges that bring forward awareness and truth-telling.
Lately, I’ve been trying to stick with four particular clarities that Quanita and I have refined. I don’t really know if this is everything. But these are places where I feel I can dwell, and lean in.
- The core of race equity is realizing that our freedoms are tied to one another. It is the work of all of us. Not just People of Color. Not just White People.
- The core of working across difference is a deep commitment to relationships — relational leadership. Difference requires deliberate format and invitation to listen with not just head, but heart and belly.
- The core of power dynamics is truth telling about cultures of dominance. It requires waking to patterns. It requires promoting deeper presence together. It requires experiments of interruption.
- The core of challenging situations is participating in formats that require people to turn to one another (rather than away). It requires formats to go deeply inner to self (rather than projection, blame and shame to external).
To be continued.