I was delivering workshops on meditation and stress management for over ten years. The places of need were middle class, upper middle class or wealthy. All wonderful people who were coming together to do something about their stress levels and the problems it was causing in their family, work and relationships. In the opening go around, the group would share the myriad of reasons they signed up for the workshops: stressful parenting situations, husbands away for work a lot, high stress work environments, educational concerns for their children, high anxiety and the pressure to keep up with their neighbors were common ones. I’ve always felt good in these circles and really clear that my work is helpful. I was also clear that my groups were predominantly White and women.
During my 12th year of delivering these services, I was asked to come to a neighborhood that was exclusively Black and Brown, predominantly women and poor. When asked the question of why they were here during the group go around, the responses were: heart attack, stroke, diabetes, cancer or some other kind of disease.
It hurt me to know that for the most part People of Color were literally allowing themselves to get seriously ill before they would do anything to manage their stress.
I needed to do something to respond in a very specific way and thus the idea for the Circling Back to Self: Women of Color Fighting for a Worthy Pause Conference was born. I am co-creating the day with two amazing women and it is just the beginning of our work. Eventually, we want to open the doors for all, but for right now we are starting here.
This event is where Women will gather to celebrate, acknowledge one another and give ourselves permission to press “Pause” to explore how leadership, advocacy and activism can both fuel and fool us.
As Women of Color, we often forget to pause and check in with ourselves. The sense of feeling worthy of our own time and attention is often lacking as we hurry to help and fix everything and everyone else.
Join us as we celebrate our worthiness by giving ourselves permission to pause and look at how activism both fuels us and fools us. Activism is often the fuel that lets our soul know that we are honoring our true purpose. There will be Dramatic Presentations, Spoken Word Performances, Food, Vendors and our Empowering Workshops.
MORNING OPENING PANEL:
“Women On Fire: How Do We Stay Passionate & Inspired Without Being Engulfed By The Flames”
The Activist Life and Renewal – Self-Care in the Midst of Conflict
Facilitators: Lynne Maureen Hurdle and Dr. Linda Lausell Bryant
Our activism can take on a life of its own causing us to react to every situation in fight mode rather than respond with sound, holistic decision-making that includes a plan of action both for the cause and for ourselves. Activism revolves around conflict and the need to do something or say something that gets attention. That action can have
many costs that we do not always take into consideration, the most damaging cost is to our health, psyche and spirit causing breakdown, breakup, burnout and depression.
In this interactive workshop Lynne Maureen Hurdle and Dr. Linda Lausell Bryant carry you through the work of looking at conflict in the form of activism in our daily lives, by sharing our own personal journeys, breakdowns and mistakes and giving you tools for “responsive reaction,” a method of incorporating self-care in to your immediate reactions.
Building Supportive Circles
Facilitators: Sa’uda Dunlap-Frazier and Sherieen L. Glast
This workshop will offer guidance on building your own effective supportive circles to help you navigate your personal and professional lives. Supportive groups or circles bring together people who are going through similar experiences. These groups provide an opportunity for people to share personal experiences, coping strategies, support and affirmation.
Psychodramatic – “How to Press Forward While Looking Back”
Facilitators: Shawnee Benton Gibson and Sevonna Brown
This session will allow participants to identify the power and importance of “Sankofa” (go back and fetch it). Participants will be supported with understanding how moving forward must consist of an intentional and courageous look at the past in order to identify what has been driving the way that they show up in all aspects of their lives.
Through the use of Psychodramatic and sociometric activities, participants will be guided through a process of examining how they have been conditioned to use their time, energy and resources in ways that generate overwhelm and imbalance. From the foundation of “review & reflection” they will be supported with “pressing” forward through a lens of balance, self care and reciprocity.
If you or a Woman of Color you know and love needs to pause and circle back to self, please join us on Saturday, March 9th.
Space is limited! Be sure to reserve your seat here… https://www.eventbrite.com/e/circling-back-to-self-women-of-color-fighting-for-a-worthy-pause-tickets-54948438258