So, real talk: working within teams is very difficult for me. Yup, I said it.
It absolutely has nothing to do with others. Simply put, within my head exist deadlines, administrative minutiae, and creative ideas that have no ceiling. It can get pretty wild in there! Funny thing is, it is by working with and leading a team that I am learning my strengths, weaknesses, fears, triumphs, and more. It is by facing the parts of myself that are difficult to live with, and by having a team to support me, that I am able to grow, heal, and soar. Over and over again. I am expanding!
I am an artist, an intellect, and an organizer of transformative spaces, and I also happen to live with depression, anxiety, and have mastered the class of self-criticism and judgment with perfect scores! Imposter syndrome? Yes, of course, this is absolutely a part of the cocktail!!! So, what is it that keeps me alive, focused, clear? What is it that moves when I cannot? What is it that challenges the aspects of myself that seek perfection, approval, or that become self-righteous in my pursuit of a fuller life? What keeps me in check, loves me, builds me, and catapults me?
Remember that thing I said I didn't like to work within?
TEAM. TEAM. TEAM.
The thing about Speaking Down Barriers is that while it does its work in the world, it also does its work within me and each one of our team members. I praise #SDBSquad for their commitment, their courage, and for sharing their gifts with me and the world.
You speak down barriers in my life. Forever, I thank you.
P.S. And my girlfriend & family are on a whole other level of support, ego-checking, and safe harbors. I shall "Be humble. Sit down." Love to my "yes and no" folk, telling me the truth to grow me.
Modern day witch hunts come for those who offer unfamiliar ways of existing, much like back in the day.
We come for the people who make us think or feel or believe that there is more to this world beyond what we think or feel or believe;
we come for those who consistently face down ego-based fear and offer innovative transformation & healing;
we come for the people who interrogate the dangers of capitalism & its direct links to ongoing oppression;
and we come for those who work to utilize resources in ways we have never seen, based in abundance rather than scarcity.
In this world, we treat the people who lean into discomfort & tension as if they themselves created it. Injustice exists whether someone speaks of it or not. For some of us, our role is to speak. For others of us, it is to create, connect, and so on. Our gifts come out of us in this beautiful way, complementing one another & offering wholeness to us all, if we will allow it.
Our deep-seated fears of being wrong or criticized distort our beauty & deepest transformative power. Out of fear, we have hunted or brutally murdered people for standing upon lighthouses within storms & pointing out more difficult, yet potentially beneficial, paths. People like the beloved Dr. King, Assata Shakur, & Medgar Evans. People. Human beings just like you & me.
We are the hunters and the hunted within a web of oppression that we did not create, but we are alive.
I thank God & the ancestors for the people who choose to shine their unpopular & peculiar light, knowing that in us all exists the fear of being hunted. May we concern ourselves, possibly even more, with the awareness of the hunter that lies within as well.
Shine the light you have, even when people believe your beautiful light dims their own. In a world that profits from your fear, do not let your silence fund destruction. Injustice does not serve the collective, and we must say so.
Speak. Speak. Speak. Then,
let the tribe around you