I recently saw a post on social media with a little girl holding a sign:
I am a Caucasian woman. My grandfather immigrated to the United States from Denmark around 1912. I have never experienced first-hand the level of racism, hate, prejudice, or anger that many have felt and that has come to the forefront of our awareness again recently. I disagree with the hate. The anger and fear are justified. The sadness is justified.
I LOVE this girl’s sign because many have said “All Lives Matter” in response to the “Black Lives Matter” statement. I have been one of them. I have not said it out of anger. I have said it out of sadness.
This girl’s statement that those who say, “Black Lives Matter” recognize that all lives matter struck a cord with me. The people who are stating “Black Lives Matter” want everyone to recognize that ALL LIVES MATTER and prejudice is uncalled for. I LOVE her sign!
I recently gave an interview about turning fear and anger into positive responses. The wonderful woman who interviewed me happens to be “black” and I happen to be “white.” She and I discussed how people like Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, and others used fear and anger to create CHANGE instead of destruction.
Fear and anger are feelings that can prompt us to recognize that something needs to change. Fear and anger signal a lack of information and a lack of security. If we feel angry or afraid, we have the opportunity to recognize those feelings and search ourselves to understand their causes. We then can create the change, promote the knowledge, demonstrate positive responses to the fear and anger.
People are people.
People are different from each other.
Every person has something to offer to the world.
Even people with roughly the same skin color have backgrounds different from each other.
Learning about people for WHO THEY ARE opens us to opportunities, knowledge, and enjoyment we would not have otherwise.
Learning and choosing who WE ARE allows us to understand others.
We MUST treat and respect ALL people with love, equality, and value. Right now, and for many years leading to now, black lives matter because ALL LIVES matter.
What does this have to do with reframing, rewriting, and redesigning? What does it have to do with knowing, owning, and building on strengths? EVERYTHING!
We can reframe the negative experiences we’ve had and find the lessons we can learn, the things we want to do differently in similar situations, and start enacting change. We can reframe the truly difficult things we’ve experienced and see the strength we’ve gained and the strengths we’ve developed as a result.
We can rewrite our present as we learn from our past. We redesign our futures by rewriting and changing our present!
My husband just shared a song from 1998 with me that I haven’t heard for a long time: “Thank You” by Alanis Morissette – co-written with Glen Ballard. Here’s a segment:
How ’bout me not blaming you for everything?
How ’bout me enjoying the moment for once?
How ’bout how good it feels to finally forgive you?
How ’bout grieving it all one at a time?
How ’bout no longer being masochistic?
How ’bout remembering your divinity?
How ’bout unabashedly bawling your eyes out?
How ’bout not equating death with stopping?
Thank you providence
Thank you disillusionment
Thank you nothingness
Thank you clarity
Thank you, thank you silence
Let’s consider the silence, clarity, nothingness, providence, and disillusionment of the past, and the present, and make a difference! We mustn’t blame others—especially not as whole groups.
There are people who cause destruction in all groups.
There are wonderful people in all groups.
Recognize people as individuals, not as groups, and we can grow together.
We gain power as we take responsibility for our own responses and choose to make a difference by being OUR BEST SELVES.
We create power as we give others the same opportunity and encourage them along the way to THEIR BEST SELVES.
If you need help reframing your past, rewriting your present, and redesigning your future, I can and want to help you.
YOU can make a difference. YOU can change the world. YOU can show that lives matter – starting with you and reaching to all people who need protection.