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Getting Comfortable Talking About Race

Crown shyness phenomenon seen in Rain tree, in Mysore Karnataka Photo by Akasmita

Talking about race can be uncomfortable, as it forces us to confront uncomfortable feelings from ourselves and others. It forces us to face our fears of offending others, or being offended ourselves. Some believe that acknowledging things like race and racism only emphasizes our differences when we could focus on things that unify us. But talking about race, racism, and ways to make things better is necessary. Meaningful change in the world begins with changing hearts and minds, especially with those closest to us.

This article from Psychology Today lists some tips for engaging in what they call “growth-oriented conversations” about race and racism.

One of the most important parts of a meaningful conversation is that there is a sincere desire to learn. If a discussion is to be meaningful and candid, it is important that there is an understanding that the intent of the discussions is to learn. It is natural and human to make mistakes, but the important part is creating a forum where these mistakes will be discussed in a manner that contributes to learning.

Becoming Comfortable with the Uncomfortable Topic of Race

Now is the time to educate ourselves, listen to others, and lean into things that might be uncomfortable at first. We must also uplift, support, and affirm each other in these conversations and empower each other’s journeys.

How do you move through uncomfortable feelings? How do you “reset” after an uncomfortable interaction or experience? Please share with us in a comment below.

-Your Friends at Undoing Racism