I know your heart, like mine, will be feeling deeply heavy now watching what is happening in the world. But for my white readers, I want you to sit with me and repeat: ‘Impact Over Intention’.
I am telling myself this over, and over, and over again from Rachel Ricketts ‘Spiritual Activism‘ course.
The murder of George Floyd is only one awful example of a string of violence against BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) all over the world. This should not be happening in this day and age but it does because systemic racism very much exists.
To my BIPOC I want you to know that I stand by you. I am listening. I am with you. I am passionate to live in a world where everyone is heard and everyone is seen.
In order to do this my white readers: we have work to do. As Angela Davis says so poignantly:
“In a racist society, it is not enough to be non-racist. We must be anti-racist.”
It’s not enough for white people to just say we are not racist, we need to be proactively anti-racist.
The most important thing we can do as white people at this moment is to sit in the discomfort. As we do, we must acknowledge that BIPOC sit in this discomfort every day. They fear for their brothers, their sisters, their mothers, their husbands, their sons and their daughters.
For too long, the burden of ending racism has been placed on those subjected to it, rather than the people who create, uphold and benefit from systemic racism.
To all my white readers: My intention with bringing my blog back to life in 2018 was because I wanted to make a difference and use my influence in a way that can make a true change.
As a white person with immense privilege in so many other ways, it has taken me far too long to post this post today. The ultimate privilege. I am committed to changing that.
It’s not just about saying these words, it’s about taking action and leading with impact. I have found out over the past couple of days that I needed to learn so much more than I thought I already knew. Even from having read books on anti-racism I still realise I have so much more to learn. And I am committed to this education.
If you are a spiritual soul like myself then you will know that our soul agreement to come to this Earth and inhabit physical bodies means that we need to change the world with our impact (and thus our actions), and not just our intentions or our thoughts. We must take a stand and get involved.
We must breathe life into our intentions by expressing them in our choices and actions each and every day. We, in order to stand for justice and walk in love, must engage in difficult conversations, reach out to our representatives, sign petitions and when in doubt, employ impact (action) over intent (words/performative sentiments).
Intentions matter, but as Rachel has so importantly taught me: the entire conversation changes when we talk about impact.
We can start leading with impact to support BIPOC deeply by listening, sharing, learning, signing petitions, having conversations, donating time and our money on an ongoing basis.
Moreover, we must amplify black voices and their work. Buy their books. Take their classes. Ultimately, we must sit with the discomfort of what is happening in the world and cultivate the deepest emphatic imagination we can find right through impact to break the system.
This post is just the very beginning of the impact I will make here. It includes a list of voices that those of us with power and white privilege should be listening and learning from.
As Michelle says in this poignant post: ‘We must live for a cause and not for applause’.
We need to do all of this, because now more than ever, our good intentions are not good enough in fighting racism. They never were.
Let’s get to work. And keep at the work, tomorrow, next week, next month, next year and beyond.
If like me, you have a chronic illness and can’t go to a protest you can sign any FREE petition that you see. This website is one of the best resources I have found for this. But let’s also be proactive and find more ourselves on Change.Org and then repost our findings.
One way to start is with our deeply toxic education system in the UK. Click here to complete this survey. Following that, fill in this petition to get Good Immigrant (Nikesh Shukla) and Why I’m No longer Talking to White People About Race (Reni Eddo-Lodge), on the GCSE reading list.
Online Courses To Do. The. Work.
Rachel Rickett’s Spiritual Activism Course has inspired the title of this post. Because as I said to start this post: I’m learning deeply through Rachel how our IMPACT outweighs our intent, and how when we get it wrong we need to put our hands up.
I’ve also learnt from Rachel (who you can also find on Instagram here) that it is far better to lead with action to actively learn how to truly start deconstructing racism and white privilege every single day.
But white friends I beg you to PAY Rachel and do the work in this webinar. Guilt, shame, anger whatever you feel during and after you’ll feel it even more. Please lean in.
This webinar also includes meditation and a breathwork exercise as well, so you’ll start processing these emotions, and also learn how to truly start deconstructing racism and white privilege.
If you’re unable to afford this course at the moment then bookmark it until you can and instead please also click here for Rachel Ricketts resource list on anti-racism resources.
As well as Rachel Ricketts course above I also recommend you also enrol in Rachel Cargle’s The Great Online Learning platform. As white people, we need to be actively engaged in our own personal and ongoing unlearning to understand and correct our own roles in upholding a structurally racist system. As we do this we must pay for this education and choose a BIPOC anti-racism educator.
Write To Your MP
Write to your MP or your representatives right now.
If you don’t have the means to donate, and you can’t protest this is free, and makes so much difference.
In the UK write to your MP for an immediate suspension of UK sales of teargas, riot shields and rubber bullets to the US. Condemn Trump’s use of force against his own citizens. Release the delayed report into BAME COVID-19 deaths and demand justice for Belly Mujinga and her family. These are just the very recent events that the UK has regarding racism.
Even a few lines add your name and starts to build numbers. The more numbers they have the higher it will be on the priority list of their constituency Writing to your MP is free and something we can.
You can then use these email templates:
Look at what brands you follow:
It is evident more than ever this week that social media has the power to amplify our voices. But the action doesn’t stop there.
Write a letter to a brand or a policymaker and tell them that you care about the people who make your clothes and also to question why they have been silent or vague in their efforts to their support of BIPOC.
Also, when you reach out to a brand, or are emailed by a brand to work with: keep this discussion going.
Donate: On an ongoing basis
Any donation is powerful but one that is ongoing is even more so. This Instagram post is a fantastic resource for understanding this.
Here are some that the charities that I personally support as they are topics I am passionate about but I urge you to support whatever you can.
For the last four years, online and in-print magazine gal-dem, have produced huge amounts of uplifting, funny and powerful content and have taken over newspapers and museums along the way. But most importantly, they’ve continued to hold truth to power through platforming the stories of women and non-binary people of colour in an industry that is 94% white and 55% comprised of men.
Their ongoing membership is another way that gal-dem can contribute to their mission of shaking up the industry, and will also be a step towards ensuring their future during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Loveland Foundation is the official continuation of this effort to bring opportunity and healing to communities of colour, and especially to Black women and girls.
Other powerful resources to action:
This list is full of podcasts, books, ways to talk to children, paid programs and memberships.
There’s a lot of information here and so I recommend finding something you are able to do and then action it:
Thank you for reading this post. I want to end with this post with Nova Reid’s TED Talk and her powerful ending:
“Go out and there and be revolutionary. Because you have the power to change the world.”
For me, it’s no to intention and yes to revolutionary impact.
This isn’t a day, weeklong or even month journey. After you have read this, it’s how we will do better in that moment. And every single moment after that.
Beautiful, compassionate readers of my blog: no matter how hopeless and helpless you feel in the world right now I believe you can also use this heaviness you may feel right now to expand your heart and cultivate the deepest emphatic imagination you have make this world a better place.
With so much love,