How are we lifting each other up?
I've been thinking a lot about this question in recent weeks as I prepared to interview two extraordinary authors and historians at the 34th annual Southern Festival of Books last weekend.
It felt good to set my own work aside and focus on theirs, to explore their research and storytelling as a student, and to welcome them to my home turf.
I was changed by reading their books: Black Hands, White House by Renee K. Harrison and My Old Kentucky Home by Emily Bingham.
Growing up as a progressive New Englander, I had very little awareness of how narrow my supposedly "good" education was, how many omissions there were in my understanding of how slave labor built this country, and the ways history has been smoothed over for the comfort of people like me, White folks who benefited from music, money and educational institutions that were built on Black and Indigenous backs.
I don't mention this to shame anybody. As Renee said at our event, this isn't about guilt or recrimination. It's about healing.
So, how can we lift each other up?
The first step is to listen. That's what we did this weekend. We listened and learned that a lot of assumptions we make about ourselves and others aren't true.
When those assumptions melt away, it can leave you feeling like the ground is shifting underfoot. It is—in the most wonderful way—ceding ground to something new and different.
This holds true for health, too. I listen to people talk about their bodies and well-being everyday. When the ground begins to shift under their feet, we know we're making progress. They start to realize assumptions they've made about their bodies, fitness, food, or the ways they measure beauty are all up for grabs.
The way it has been isn't the way it always has to be.
Listening is first, then learning, then action... round and round we go.
What does your body need? What does your city need? What do your loved ones need? One healing step at a time, and it's a whole lot easier when we do it together.
All the best,
Get Out the Vote
This may not look glamorous, but it does feel pretty great to get together with a bunch of powerhouse people to do something productive. Last night, a group of our local Moms Demand Action volunteers showed up at a police precinct in Nashville to let gun sense voters know that early voting has begun!
It feels great, and you know what feels even better? CASTING YOUR BALLOT. 💪
Voting is so important in this midterm! If you can do that, you've done your bit! If you want to do more, there are so many options. Here are just a few:
Find your local Moms Demand Action chapter (you don't have to be a mom!)
Party to the polls with Rock the Vote
Write letters to voters with The Big Send
Wikipedia Gone Rogue
Lifting each other up can happen in all kinds of ways.
Jessica Wade, a 33-year-old London-based physicist was honored by the British government for creating more than 1600 Wikipedia biographies "about women and minority scientists who never got their due — from employers, from other scientists, from the public."
Over the past decade, old-guard Wiki-trolls deleted her posts repeatedly as she kept putting them back up. They said "the women she wrote up were not all that well-known. Wade said that’s right, that’s the problem: they should be better known."
Wikipedia ruled in her favor, and the posts are here to stay... as are the women in STEM they feature. 😎
Are Weight Loss Medicines Safe?
Weight carries so much undue societal pressure. It’s an emotional topic for many people and the question of how to lose weight can lead to all kinds of confusing and misleading information and methods.
Like the reader who sent in this week's question to Hey, Health Coach at Forbes, I am wary of false promises and the long-term safety of new prescription weight loss drugs. As a coach, when I'm faced with these kinds of questions, I find the best way forward is to rely on the existing science and consult with experts.
So when I got this question from a reader (I'm hearing it a lot from my clients, as well), it seemed important to investigate and answer the best we can. If you're wondering about these new prescription meds, you can read more here.
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Past posts can be found HERE.