Racism does exist. That is just the ugly truth of life unfortunately. Ignorance will rear its ugly head from time to time and at times it does feel too much. For me personally, I am not going too much into details into the subtle racist comments and experiences that I have gone through. Some were just full blown ignorant and racist name calling to my face but that is not worth my time giving them attention here. I know there are millions of people that have gone through that too. At the same time you acknowledge the wonderful, loving people that do exist. They too are out there.
Sometimes you don't even know how to deal. You do feel confused. Sometimes you just unable to see the subtlety of it all then. You don’t have the skills to handle the situation.
Below are 3 skills needed to begin discussing racism and why Emotional Intelligence would be highly beneficial.
- Emotional Literacy
Having emotional intelligence is having emotional literacy. What is means having the ability to see and name the feelings you are having. Naming it is being able to handle it and the best you can. When you name it you can own it.
- Consequential Thinking
Having emotional intelligence means that you see, realize and accept the fact that each of us as human beings , our actions and choices have an impact on others. Once we fully understand and grasp, teach ourselves and our children that, they will make different choices and perhaps we are kinder and gentler with others and themselves
Let’s use our emotional intelligence to create meaningful connections with people, and take action to fight racism and discrimination in our schools. It affects all of us. For, as Dr. King said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”.
- Increase Empathy
When you are able to put yourself in another person’s shoes and answer this question ; “How would you feel if that happened or said to you or about you?” There is very little doubt that our words and actions , thoughts would be one of more compassion and understanding.
Dealing with racism and ignorance is always a challenge and can be complicated. But, with emotional intelligence and an open sense of communication, empathy and understanding. We can calmly deal and talk about things. We have to be sensible about this so as not to make things worse in anger and reverse racism instilled.That does not serve anyone any good either.
The way I see it, Dr. King is beautiful in his poetic, artful ways, in his words. sermons . actions in reaching out to fellow humans to spread his non violence message. That is why he is loved, respected and revered. You don’t fight fire with fire. It only makes things worse.
To also quote Barbara Fredrickson, director of Positive Emotions and Psychophysiology Laboratory at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill :
“Love draws you out of your cocoon of self-absorption to attune to others. Love allows you to really see another person, holistically, with care, concern, and compassion.”
There is no place for a US vs THEM mentality in dealing with racism.
There has been quite a lot said in the media everywhere on this topic. What are your thoughts? What has your experience been with your children when talking about this topic? Comment down below. As always, we do love hearing from you.