For those who have not experienced racism, it’s hard to appreciate the subtlety of its influence and its infiltration into thoughts and actions, coded behaviours and subconscious responses both for perpetrator and recipient.
I have not experienced it directly, though I have encountered other forms of discrimination throughout my life.
Empathy is not an abstract idea or feeling, as humans we understand it personally most often through a story.
In order to grow, we need to listen to the experience of others who are different than us.
Here is a very interesting perspective of someone who experienced racism as a passenger.
What are your thoughts or tips on growing empathy within?
Everytime protests over racial injustice erupts somewhere in a world (mostly USA), I notice quite a few people around me start telling stories how they are not racist, but...
Just stop it - we all are.
I was once stopped by police in LA, because my friend ran a stop sign. We smiled and told him we are stupid foreigners who are not familiar with driving in a LA. He frowned and asked if our country has Stop signs. We admitted it was wrong and promised to be careful. He waved goodbye and didn't even write us a ticket.
Most of us here in the North have no idea what it means to live in fear in your own country. We usually are welcome everywhere.
Blue eyes open doors.
It was very different for our parent and grandparent generations. Their life was shaped by oppression.
Out of respect for those who fought for our freedom, we should show compassion and empathy for people trying to lift themselves out fear. To have their voices heard.
Just admit your privilege and be kind.
Think twice before deciding which side you are on, while you are listening to other people trash-talking their managers, colleagues, or partners. ⚠️
According to a recent study, by siding with the interlocutor, we are just adding more fuel to the conflict, which discourages the interlocutor to forgive and make peace with the other party.
To be supportive, we do not have to choose a side. The most important thing is to create a safe space for the other person to vent their emotions and collect one's thoughts.
We can do it by asking open questions, such as:
✔️ What happened?
✔️ How does it make you feel?
✔️ Why is it important for you?
✔️ What is the next step?
Remember that our goal as good conversational partners is not to condemn anyone but rather be patiently present with the other person. 👌
Link to the study: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31464479/
What to do to do nothing?
In today’s hyper effective office workplaces you are tempted to think that doing nothing is some sort of a sin. Having nothing to do is a waste of your time and consequently - of someone else’s money (usually your bosses).
Manufacturers used to call it (and some still do) a downtime and a downtime usually means inefficiency a.k.a. - a loss.
But in the same way that the workplaces in offices have become hyper effective, the workplace of a service provider, blue collar worker has become more unpredictable: orders are erratic, plans usually are more of a fairy tail than a thing to follow and uncertainty is the most certain thing. Loosing time as a service provider is quit often a normal thing - some orders get canceled, plans are not fulfilled and forecast are a myth.
On these often occasions one is tempted to find something to do. If one is not a freelancer and has a boss, the boss usually encourages that seeking of “self worth”.
So, how can doing nothing in this case be good? You want to be useful, your boss wants you to be useful. Who is wrong here?
Doing nothing usually will not bring you more income on its own, but it can be a useful measurement tool of your success. Figures vary from industry to industry, but if you, as a service provider, can reach a “free” or “lost” time portion of 20%, you are on a right track (german industry standard).
In this case, doing nothing (but you need to be sure, that there is nothing planned to do) and measuring that free time will let you know how much free time in your process you have. Never mind, that that time can’t be immediately used - it is the measurement of the whole process, not that particular task.
I would like to link some references for these insights, but it’s just my experience and the way I was lucky to use it.
Using that free time and reaching a goal of 20% as a service provider could be another topic for the future.