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Ep #232: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion with Trudi Lebrón

Feminist Wellness with Victoria Albina | Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion with Trudi Lebrón

If you’ve ever felt like there’s something deeply wrong with you because you have emotional outsourcing ways of being, you are not alone. The popular narrative out there makes us believe we have defects in our character, when in reality, we need to examine our environment, socialization, conditioning, and the systems of oppression that we live in.

That’s why I’m speaking to Trudi Lebrón this week. While I bring a feminist and neuroscientific lens to this work, Trudi’s work sits at the intersection of diversity, equity, and inclusion. She’s an author, coach, and consultant for equity-centered businesses, and she’s here this week to highlight the importance of building a critical equity lens when moving from a codependent existence into interdependence.

Join us on this episode as I quiz Trudi on how we learn our emotional outsourcing tendencies, and why we need diversity, equity, and inclusion in all helping industries. Trudi is sharing her thoughts on feeling othered, remedies for when your identity and worth are externalized, and her top tips for participating in conversations about diversity, equity, and inclusion. 


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What You’ll Learn:

Trudi’s thoughts on how we learn emotional-outsourcing ways of being.

What our feelings of being othered looked like for us.

Our remedies for getting off the hamster wheel of externalizing your identity.

The power of making an active choice, even if you don’t like the choice.

Why we need a diversity, equity, and inclusion lens in helping industries.

Trudi’s tips for participating in conversations about diversity, equity, and inclusion.

How patience is a key part of being an equitable person in the world.

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The Institute for Equity-Centered Coaching Exchange

The Antiracist Business Book by Trudi Lebrón

Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler

Parable of the Talents by Octavia Butler

Full Episode Transcript:

This is Feminist Wellness, and I’m your host, Nurse Practitioner, Functional Medicine expert, and life coach, Victoria Albina. I’ll show you how to get unstuck, drop the anxiety, perfectionism, and codependency so you can live from your beautiful heart. Welcome, my love; let’s get started.

Hello, hello, my love. I hope this finds you doing so well. I am loving all the summertime things; you know this Leo baby is. We have these two blueberry bushes in the backyard, and when I tell you that they have exploded with fruits, I mean exploded! Quarts and quarts; multiple courts. That’s a lot of fruit for two little bushes.

In one of the bushes a robin made her nest. It's really sweet. We have not been going near that bush, worry not. But it's very sweet. I really feel like Snow White these days. I was meditating in the backyard the other day, and when I opened my eyes there was not one, not two, but three bunnies very, very, very close to me. It was two good chunky, medium sized, good sized bunners, and a little baby bunners that I really think could fit in the palm of your hand. It was so amazing.

Then there are doves that come in the afternoon. I've been waking up at six a lot, to really just enjoy the morning hours, go for a walk and get that beautiful morning sunshine on my face, and the birds at the birdfeeder are just going wild at that hour. I often stand at the kitchen window and just stare and stare. Then, I saw a hawk fight. I don't know if it was two hawks. It was definitely one big hawk and a lot of little birds.

I think the hawk was trying to go for the bird's nest; circle life, what are you going to do? But oh, my goodness, were they chasing her off. It was wild. There's also a groundhog in the backyard, a majillion chippies of a little chipmunk. I think it's the racing stripe. This is almost two minutes of me talking all about how much I love the menagerie of nature in my backyard. I haven't even gotten to the deers.

Suffice it to say, while I do sometimes miss living in Brooklyn... I do. I miss having food available after 8pm. I miss the subway. I miss walking everywhere, and art, culture. I mean, there's things I miss… shopping. This is pretty outstanding. The clean, fresh air. I mean, Canadian wildfires aside. The butterflies, the birds, snacks growing on trees right outside in my yard, the peonies. It's a pretty good time.

My nervous system is so much calmer, more grounded, more settled. It’s this body-wide exhale, living up here. So, that's my summertime report. This week's episode has absolutely nothing to do with summer time, Disney princesses, absolutely not blueberries or wild animals. In fact, it is a conversation with my dear friend and colleague, Trudi Lebrón.

She's a coach who works in the DEI space: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion space. She is a psychologist; she is a really great human. We had been talking, not on the podcast, about the things I talk about here. About how our socialization and conditioning create so much of our emotional outsourcing, and how the popular conversation out there is that if you have these thought habits, that you are sick. There's a defect in your character. That there's something deeply wrong with you.

I just have to say I could not agree less. We need to look at environment, at socialization, conditioning, the patriarchy, white settler colonialism, on and on. All the things you hear me talk about here. So, I thought it would be cool to have Trudi come on and talk some more about these things. Without further ado, I hope you enjoy this conversation as much as I did.

Victoria Albina: Trudi, I'm so glad you're here.

Trudi Lebrón: I'm so happy to be here. What's up?

Victoria: What's up? God, it’s so good to see your face and hear your voice. I can't imagine a single human on this planet doesn't know who you are. But just in case, would you take a moment to introduce yourself to the good people?

Trudi: Sure. My name is Trudi Lebrón. I am an author, a coach, a consultant. Many, many things. My work sits at the intersection of diversity, equity and inclusion, and coaching, personal development space.

Victoria: I love the work you do, and I have to tell the good people that I like to call you “Almost Doctora,” because you've almost finished your doctorates. Almost, you're well on your way. That's pretty fancy.

Trudi: It is pretty fancy. You're right. There's also a lot of work to do but…

Victoria: But you're out here being pretty fancy and I'm into it. So, there we go. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I brought you on the show because you're amazing and everyone should know about your work. Also, because here, on Feminist Wellness, I talk so much about how emotional outsourcing, codependent, perfectionist, and people-pleasing thinking, habits, ways of being, are things that we learned as survival skills.

Not just in our family of origin, from our ancestral lineage, but also from systems of oppression. This is the work you do. This is where our work intersects. So, I'm excited to talk about this with you.

Trudi: Yeah, I'm excited to talk about it, too.

Victoria: Yeah. What comes up for you when I say that? We learned to be codependent because we live in these systems.

Trudi: Yeah. Because we live in these systems. So, what comes up for me as a social psychologist, almost Doctora, is all of the theories around ecological human development. Which essentially say, kind of tell us, that we exist in these multiple social ecosystems, right? So, if you picture yourself at the middle and all these circles around you, you're influenced most by the people who are closest in proximity to you.

That is going to be your friends, your family, then your school, your peers, your neighbors, things like that. As we go out, we encounter different parts of the world, and eventually, we're encountering policies and practices and rules and mass media. We're noticing trends. Our brains see trends as what is normal, right? We create norms, and we hold and judge ourselves against those norms.

So, it is an interconnected system of both policies, practices, and institutions, but also all these human energetic exchanges that helped to shape who we are and what we believe about the nature of life, everything. About how we judge right and wrong, how we think about what should and shouldn't be, what we believe about life. Everything is coming from somewhere else.

Victoria: It makes a lot of sense. Particularly, I would say, for folks living in marginalized bodies; folks assigned female at birth, people of color, queer folks, etc. There's this story that ‘I am inherently broken, because I'm not the white cis straight dude,’ that permeates this whole framework of looking at self and other within these ecological systems.

Trudi: Yeah, I think it starts with white straight dudes. I certainly remember being a young girl feeling marginalized by opportunities to like sports. For example, in the 80s, I know that’s so forever ago…

Victoria: We're so Gen-X right now. We’re so Gen-X.

Trudi: I remember being the only girl playing basketball in the morning, before the school basketball program, right? All kinds of things like that. So, I remember being a girl and not fitting into what other girls looked like or were into, and judging that against myself. As I grew, even academic success, I wasn't a good student. Then I began using those things as information. I'm not good enough. I'm not the right kind of girl.

I'm not a dude. I'm not smart. My parents are biracial. People are always asking me if I am who I say I am. All the ways that the world was telling me that I wasn't “normal” or regular or enough. So yeah, it's easy to start with the big ones like, white, rich, and it's all these other subtle things too, about the right kind of person.

Victoria: There are so many things. Oh, my gosh, so many layers.

Trudi: Yeah, yeah, there's so many layers.

Victoria: What just popped into my head, and I don't know if this is going to take us anywhere, but I just want to share it. There were two South American families in Providence, Rhode Island when I was growing up; the Gonzales' and us. They were Ecuadorian, which is hella different from being Argentine. Let me tell you what.

I just remember how ‘othering’ it felt to be at school. The Latinos were largely caribeños, and to speak with my weird ass accent... So, I'm ‘other’ with the white kids, the regular white kids. I am a white Latina, owning that upfront. My sister and I say “regular white kids,” the American white kids. But we brought milanesas steak and weird, weird empanadas; South American food for lunch. So, it's mockery for that.

But then, we also had these “weird” accents. That being a super othering experience. Which definitely added in to all the complexity of growing up in a deeply codependent household, people pleasing others and feeling less than, and less than and less than and less than.

Trudi: Yeah. We're really good at absorbing narratives from the world around us. Depending on who we are and the identities we hold, and also some personality traits, right? We either become more susceptible to those narratives or less susceptible, and it just so happens that if the more marginalized identities that you hold…

On the trait side, we would say, the more risks that you have, the more racism in your life and poverty, and factors like that, all these different kinds of risks and protective factors… You are either, more or less, again, susceptible to internalizing those and having either your identity affirmed, as you are what is good and right, and you will be successful in the world. Or you will encounter messages, that are internalized messages, that reinforce the deficit and the way that you are different.

Victoria: Right. I really do appreciate that you're speaking to this both in the larger categories, again, like race and class, but also in those little tiny ways. That, “Oh, the other girls are thinner than me. The other girls are better dancers. The other girls aren't into basketball.”

Trudi: For me, it's so interesting how young it got wrapped into beauty. Because my mom was not a girly girl. She was not raising girly girls, either. Right? So, I never knew what to do with my hair. Our clothes didn't really match. We didn't have nice shoes. Our shoes never matched until my parents got divorced and my father met my stepmother, who was more of what I would describe as a typical Puerto Rican household…

She was like, “Oh, no, you can't leave the house like that. Let me show you how to blow dry your hair out and put the high bangs and all of that.” Eventually, I got it together.

Victoria: Because ‘the higher the hair, the closer to God.’ I just need to interject.

Trudi: Absolutely. I distinctly remember going into my fifth-grade year as a totally different person. Because the relationship with my stepmother had shifted, because she moved in with my dad. I just had a different kind of feminine presence in my life. Again, it's not about the right way or the wrong way, but I now had access to a different way of being. That changed the experience that I was able to have at school. So yeah, that stuff is deep.

Victoria: It’s deep. It’s deep because it hits on identity. What do human nervous systems want? Significance and belonging. Yeah, so our negativity bias is always scanning the world to see, how do I not fit in? How am I not the norm? Because that's the shit that'll kill you. Right?

Trudi: Yeah. The other thing that we do because of that bias, is when we go into places, we look for people that look like us, right? Or we look for people who we perceive are going to share personality traits or cultural traits or something. So, when you go in a room and you don't see that, it is very isolating.

Victoria: Very isolating. Which again, makes sense. One of the core things in emotional outsourcing is looking to others to validate us, to prove our worth. So, it makes sense if you constantly feel invalidated, right? No one else is like you, you don't have significance, and you don't have belonging, so of course, you're looking to anyone who can be like, “No, no, you're a good person. You belong. You're okay. You’re good enough.” Of course, you're going to give your entire self away all the time to try to source that.

Trudi: Yeah. Also, you're really susceptible to externalizing, to looking to external sources, not just people, for your own sense of validity, right? So, now you're not good enough on your own. You're good enough because you do great work in the world. Or because I make these cool things or because you are an Instagram influencer, right? So, you attach worth then to these things that we do, instead of allowing it to just be, and just because you're a human.

Victoria: Yeah. Right. Which then, of course, leads to more and more grasping, more and more seeking, more and more externalizing. It’s a hamster wheel; over and repeat. Rinse and repeat. Yeah. Yeah.

Trudi: You have to work very intentionally to get off the hamster wheel because our system is so invested in keeping everybody on it.

Victoria: Right, for sure, for sure. Yeah, I'm curious then… One of the things I love to do here is get really, really practical, and give people remedies. So, if someone's listening, and they're like, “I want to get off. I want to get off this hamster wheel,” where would you invite them to start?

Trudi: I always invite people to start, if they haven't done identity work to really start there. That work is difficult to do unsupported. It doesn't mean that you need to hire a coach or do a big complicated program. But even if it's just with a friend. That you're just thinking about what are the different aspects of your identity? What different roles do you have? Identity can be I'm biracial Latina, I'm a woman, I'm an entrepreneur. It could be…

Victoria: You have great fashion sense it. You really do.

Trudi: Thank you. It could also be I'm a mom. The role that I have assigns me this identity. So, thinking about all those roles that you hold, and those identities that you have. Then thinking about, what you make those things mean? What are you holding yourself accountable to, and do you agree with them?

Victoria: Right, that’s the part? What's your reason “why”? Do you like it? Yeah, it's a big thing I do with my clients, is looking at these roles. Because we didn't sign up for good girl. We kind of signed up for good wife, good mother.

Trudi: Teah, and what does that mean in the context of… Maybe if it's wife, maybe that conversation happens with your partner, right? Because you also have expectations from your partner and how they're showing up. So, that's a reciprocal, interpersonal relationship. Not intrapersonal relationship.

I think that, and because I made that distinction, I will say that a big part of my work lately has been about teaching people about those different ecosystems and how we have our intrapersonal relationships and things to negotiate and work on. But then there are interpersonal things with people, that interpersonal sphere. Then there are institutional things. Marriage is an institution and has agreements, right.

Those agreements can be different from person to person. But that's not just how you feel on any given day. That's about an agreement that you set. So yeah, there are all these different levels to our environment. Those levels have different implications for how we show up and how we make decisions and who gets to be involved in transformation and changes.

Victoria: How we believe we should be showing up. Because those are the unexamined roles. Like, an unexamined life keeps us in the same old BS we've always been in, right. I think what I would add to this, is to look at the “have to” stories that are aligned with each role. Right? So, I am someone's daughter, therefore, I have to go to holidays if I don't want to. I have to call home on Fridays. I have to take my mom her lunch. I have to see if she took her pills. I have to, have to, have to.

What about as a wife, an employee, employer, daughter, etc.? What narratives of obligation were created for you and assigned to you and taught to you? Were you socialized to have learned? Which have you picked up from your family of origin and which have you imposed on yourself?

Trudi: This is something that sometimes I get pushback on, and particularly from social justice people. Because I am one of these people, I think it's really important to identify when we're making choices. Even if the choices are things that we don't agree with, or we wish we didn't have to make. For example, in the context that I'm thinking about this, this idea that you have to go to family dinner. Or you have to make sure that your mom takes her medication, right?

Someone can say, “Oh, yes, I have to. I don't have a choice. Because if I don't do it, no one else will, and something bad will happen.” Okay, I get all of that. And, there is a world where you don't, where you don't check, and then there are negative consequences at the other side of that, for sure.

I feel, personally, that it is more empowering to acknowledge that ‘yes, I am making a choice. Even though I don't like that choice. Even though I don't want to have to have that choice. It does feel like an obligation that I am agreeing to. But I am making an active choice.’  Doing it from a position of active choice, even if you don't like the choice, is more empowering than being, “I just don't have a choice. I'm just going to do this, and I don't have a choice.”

I feel really strongly that in the vast majority of things, there are absolutely choices. Even though some of those choices are… What we're actually doing is doing things because we're avoiding the negative.

Victoria: A negative outcome, right. Yeah, for sure. I could not agree more. For me, that's one of the key and pivotal parts of moving from codependent existence to interdependence. Basically, mutuality and reciprocity, right? My partner likes to say that one of the sexiest things I ever said to her is, “I don't need you.” Not in that graspy obligation heaviness way, but like, let's be interdependent.

Trudi: Yeah. Right. That breaks so many norms. What we've learned about, what relationships are supposed to be and what love is supposed to be and people's desire to feel needed. I would much rather be wanted.

Victoria: All day long. Man, I think stepping into interdependence would be so much easier without the yoke and the weight of the patriarchy, white settler colonialism, and late-stage capitalism.

Trudi: Yeah, that's very true.

Victoria: You're like, “Yeah, okay, done. Good night and thank you.”

Trudi: I was just on a call with some folks talking about anti-racist business practices. This balance that people are trying to strike between how do I compensate people well. How do I compensate a team well, pay myself well, and keep prices equitable? Keep pricing in check so that things don't have to cost a bajillion dollars.

I think that we are, particularly in the coaching industry, really approaching this bubble where the cost of labor is so disproportionate from fair market rate for jobs in every other IRL industry, that it creates a pressure for people to be charging a lot of money. It also creates this pressure for people to be earning. “Unrealistic” isn't the word, but again, disproportionate.

Victoria: Yeah, I could not agree more. I wanted to ask you to talk about your new program, if you don't mind, because I just signed up. I think it's amazing.  I mean, also in the wake of what's going on politically, please tell us all about it.

Trudi: Yeah. So, what we do is we certify people in equity-centered coaching and equity-centered leadership. We also do consulting for business owners who want to build businesses that are anti racist and equity centered, or work with companies who are already in existence, to do more team culture work and organizational development.

Victoria: It's so beautiful what you're doing. My brain keeps going back… You know I studied public health and studied as an epidemiologist and studied social determinants of health, and to not bring that and a DI lens to coaching, healthcare, teaching.

The reason I bring all of that in, why bring a feminist lens, an intersectional feminist lens, and the neuroscience, is because there's so much shame and stigma that belies, legit, everything that people are bringing to helpers; to social workers, to teachers, to coaches, et cetera, et cetera.

Shame only lives in the shadows, and so we're not talking about the impact of race and class, and sexuality, bah, bah, bah, bah, bah, bah, on how we're showing up, we are inadvertently propagating shame within our clients. Because there is something they cannot show us. There is something that they don't feel comfortable bringing to their coach or their teacher, to their whatever, right?

My sister was a teacher for many years and is now a coach, because it's genetic, talks about having kids being really fidgety and not paying attention in school and learning it's because they were hungry, right? We all know those stories. So, there's a shame in there, that if you don't have a lens…  I was about to say a Marxist lens, because I went to Overland in the 90s, but a class lens, right? You're not going to even think to go there. Or a lens that’s looking at race, et cetera. So, it's really powerful work, Trudi.

Trudi: Yeah, that's essentially what we're looking to develop. It’s we’re looking to help coaches and leaders who are committed to these values, right? We don't want everyone to be a DI coach, right? We want people to be life coaches, and health coaches, and wellness and all of these things.

What we're trying to do is build their critical equity lens so that they have that broader context, and that they have skills to facilitate those conversations, so that they know what to say and what to look for and what not to say and when to pull back and when to lean in. There's a whole host of skills.

That's why I always say the art and science of coaching, right? The science of coaching is the theory, the psychology, the tools that we build. The art is how you implement and what you see and how you ask the questions and how you manipulate your energy as a coach, your style as a coach, as part of the coaching tool to create space, right? There's just so much. I just love coaching.

Victoria: It's so exciting. I'm also thinking about, for coaches and beyond, what this beautiful work does is helps shine the lens, first and foremost, on ourselves and what we are carrying and what's internalized that we may not even notice. That we, of course, bring into every room we walk into, right?

I had no idea I was living from so much codependent thinking until it hit me like a frickin’ sledgehammer. No idea I was people pleasing and being in perfectionism, no clue. I just thought I was being polite and being nice and stuff. Oops.

Trudi: It's a critical practice that allows you to check that for yourself. So, one of the competencies of equity centered coaches, what we evaluate in our certified students, and what we'll start to train people on, is actually building a reflexivity practice. Building the ability to not just be self-aware, but to analyze your own behavior and your own bias, and identify when those things are coming up.

It is because I have a very strong reflexivity practice that I was able to say, “Huh, how do I feel about essentially gatekeeping this important information behind a program that costs over $10,000 and requires a year of people's time?” Why did I make that choice to do it that way? What are the implications of that? What are the implications of changing it? Is it in integrity with my values?

Then, concluding I actually do feel really aligned with offering a certification, because there's a fidelity to the model. There's a certain quality of rigor that comes from certification. And there are some basics of this that are so important that I want as many people as possible to have them. But it is because that reflexivity practice, I was able to say that.

Because every coach I've ever had would probably say you can't unbundle your certification. But of course, we can. Of course, we can. Colleges are exactly built this way. We want to be an educational institution. I'm not playing this coaching mastermind game with people. No, this is a school. This is an educational institution.

Victoria: I love that. Thank you for doing that. I'm excited to start coming to the workshops. Trudi, what you're doing here is amazing. I'll say, revolutionary. Most of my audience are not coaches, but they are people who are listening to a show called Feminist Wellness, right? They care, and they want to bring DEI into their lives. Can they sign up?

Trudi: 100%, they can. I will say, I use the word coach a lot. We use coach to really describe anyone who's doing work with other humans. If you're a teacher, a social worker, an advocate, if you're volunteering at a soup kitchen, the library, or wherever, if you're a parent. These are skills... I don't think of coaching as a profession. I mean, it is a profession, but I also think of it primarily as a skill that we can use to be in community with people. So, 100%.

Victoria: Yeah. I doubt that anybody listening to this show, who clicked on this episode with your name on it, doesn't understand why this matters. I think they need talking points for when they go home and their racist uncle is at the table. You know what I mean? Or that aunt who is like, “Well, this woke business…” I think it'd be really helpful for folks to…

Particularly, remember we're talking to people with people-pleasing habits who historically shy away from conflict, who aren't trying to rock the boat. But let's give them some scripts. Right? What are some entry points to having these conversations. How do we have the talks?

Trudi: Yeah, so first of all, if you're going and having Thanksgiving with your racist uncle, that's not the time probably to have a whole processing around trying to change someone's mind.  Also, the work, sometimes it's not about changing people's minds. Sometimes you have to set a boundary just to protect yourself. To be, “That's not a conversation we're having.”

Especially, because right now we have such a campaign against diversity, equity and inclusion. We have an entire political party who is really committed to this “anti woke,” nonsense, right? What they are trying to do is to get people to believe that diversity, equity, inclusion, liberation, anti-oppression, any of that kind of body of work, is somehow pushing an anti-white agenda, anti-straight, anti-cis agenda.

That is really what they want people to believe. They either really want people to believe that. Or they want people to become so confused and tired of this conversation and desensitize, yes, that they check out. Because if you check out, then you're not paying attention. Then people can continue to make all the policy changes that they are trying to implement.

Everything is equity issues. Diversity, equity and inclusion has forever been protecting all people. Some of the biggest benefactors of DEI work had been white women, particularly in the workforce. So, it is not a big jump to go from a ruling that's fine for companies to no longer serve LGBTQ+ families…

There's not a big jump from that, to we see signs again that say ‘No blacks allowed.’ Or that interracial marriage becomes a question, gay marriage becomes question, and not a far jump from that that religious freedom…

Victoria: Dobbs is scary enough.

Trudi:  Oh, yeah. Right. Yeah. That's the trajectory that we're on. So, it is not much farther than that before it's, “You know what, women? I think maybe your place is in the home, barefoot and pregnant.” That is literally the consequences that we're talking about. Things that, we, for decades thought were fundamental human rights, are up for debate at this moment.

Victoria: Listen, to be all “Octavia warned us.” I mean, Octavia warned us. Margaret Atwood warned us. Rachel Carson also warned us. I mean, warned.

Trudi: Octavia Butler's work is so prophetic that it's scary.

Victoria: Horrifying.

Trudi: So much.

Victoria: If you haven't read Parable of the Sower, get thee to your local family-owned independent bookstore, and get a copy. IndieBound is how you get it ordered to your house.

Trudi:  Please, don't stop there. To really blow your mind, read Parable of the Talents. It’s the second book in the series. I have to say, this isn't too much of a spoiler, but I just want you to understand that she has a character in that book who runs a campaign with the slogan “Make America Great Again.” Okay? I can say that without giving too much away. When I say prophetic, it's scary. She had a time machine, and one into the future.

Victoria: Yeah, and told us what's up. We need to listen, right? We need to do this work, within ourselves, around our own identities, around raising our own voices, around our interpersonal and our families of origin. Around the five nervous systems we’re around the most; at work, right?  Then we need to go to the library board. Because that's where they're starting; the school board, the library board. That's how insidious this is, banning books.

Trudi: It's at the local level, too, where a lot of protections can be enacted. So, where the federal government is making these… I live in Connecticut, which is a really solidly blue state. People in Connecticut are like, “Okay, well, what does this mean for us? How can we make sure that these things don't happen here?” So, the local level is where the day-to-day impacts of those policies are felt. Certainly, getting involved.

Victoria: To zoom it back to the nervous system, we need to have the capacity within our nervous systems to trust ourselves that we know what's right, to believe in ourselves and our opinions, to feel safe raising our voices, having opinions publicly, or even privately, or even in our own journals.

Trudi: I want to say for people who are listening, who are having these ideas and feel like they want to communicate those ideas. Thinking about a writing practice, even if it's messy and just on a Substack newsletter, or something. But participating in the conversation, you don't have to position yourself as an expert, you can position it as, “Here are my thoughts and here are my perspectives.” Maybe you are an expert in your field. So, how does this become incorporated into your thought leadership work? Whether that happens to be in human services or education or P.E.C or whatever, right? This work needs to seep into all places.

Victoria: What just came to me really strongly, is one of my favorite parts of this community, in the Feminist Wellness community, is that we are all tenderoni. I call them my tender ravioli. Because we all have these sweet little cheesy center, soft centers.

We're a bunch of really tender human animals, who by and large, are out here trying to be kind and loving and caring, and we have trouble parsing that out from codependency and obligation and bah bah bah bah bah, but at the end of the day, we're all about love, and presence and intentionality.  The personal is political.

So, if your goal is to be kind within your own home and your family and to your kids, and let's kick that out a level, and another and another, and another. Learning about equality, equity, inclusion, diversity, these things are part of being a kind person in the world, in my opinion.

Trudi: Also, building a practice around patience. Patience is a big one, because I feel like a lot of the violations of humanity, especially between people who don't know each other, come from this urgency. People want people to hurry up at the store, and move from the light, this is taking too long. Just chill out. Practice patience.

Notice, this is, again, another reflexivity practice. Notice when you start to get anxious about something and just say, “What is triggering this right now? Am I in a rush to get somewhere? Am I stressed out about this other thing that's actually not even related, that I was just thinking about? Then I get a phone call that annoyed me.” Really assessing, where's that coming from?

Also asking, “Where do things need to be solved? At what level do things need to be solved? Is this a problem that this person in front of me can solve? Or am I just yelling at this person because they're warm body and I'm just upset right now.” I think patience is such a key part of building an equity practice that we don't talk about enough.

Victoria: We don't, right? Because what it comes down to is anti-violence, at its core.

Trudi: Totally. Urgency works against that. You need to be able to go slow.

Victoria: Urgency is a tool of white supremacy, for sure, that people don't think about. It impacts all of us. Because from urgency, we don't see our own humanity or that of those around us. Trudi, I adore you.

Trudi: I adore you, too. Thank you.

Victoria: You're so wonderful. I'm really grateful to call you hermana. I'm grateful to be friends and in community with you. I'm really grateful for the work you do in the world. I'm really grateful for the books you've written. Your anti-racist business book? Amazing. You know I bought like 400 copies.

Trudi:  Oh, my God. Did you?

Victoria: I bought so many copies. It was a good Christmas. This new project is incredible, and I'm grateful that I get to be a part of it and learn from you and your team.

Trudi: We'll make sure to keep you posted on all the new things that are coming up.

Victoria: We will put it in the show notes. Yes, for sure. Great. Any last parting words? Anything you want to make sure the good people know and hear?

Trudi: Yes. I just want to really urge people again, as we go into this really charged political season, where there's going to be a lot of language thrown around about what Diversity Equity and Inclusion is and what anti racism is, I want people to please try and be an advocate for this work.

Sending the message that diversity, equity and inclusion work is about protecting everyone from abuses of power. That, essentially, is what that work is about. If we compromise that for some, we're compromising that for everyone.

Victoria: Oh, powerful. Thank you.

Trudi: You’re welcome. Thanks for having me.

Victoria: Thank you for being wonderful.

Thank you so much for listening, my love. That was such a fun conversation. Trudi is so great. Talking to her really just is so expansive, it expands my mind and reminds me to always question my thinking, always be asking how I can do things in a way that is of greater service to myself and the world. I'm really grateful for her perspective, her kindness, her thoughtfulness, and our friendship. Thank you, Trudi. Thanks for all you do.  Thanks for being you.

All right, my love. Thank you for being you. I'm glad you're you. I'm glad you were born. If no one's told you today that you are really very special and perfect and amazing and worthy of love and care, simply because you were born, I'd like to be the first because it's true. You're magnificent. Yeah, you. I'm looking at you, you tender ravioli. Looking right at you. Oh, my love. Thank you for listening.

If you're loving the show, you know what to do. Share it with your friends, share it on social media, and tag me. Head on over to wherever you get your podcasts, but particularly with Apple Podcast, leave a five-star rating and a written review, and it can legit be one line. Like, “AMI, I love this podcast.”

But please just take a moment to do that. The reason I ask you to do that, though I haven't in quite a while, but the reason is because the more ratings and reviews a show has the higher it ranks in Apple Podcasts. Then, it shows up more frequently in search.

The reason I do this podcast is to be of service. I have had such enormous privilege, educational privilege, that I've been able to study. I've been saying the nervous system for 20 years, all these certifications, all these courses, all this everything, and I'm really grateful for all this knowledge.

I know that like we were talking about with Trudi, not everyone has access to this material. So, I want to share it in digestible, understandable ways, which is what we're here doing, right? So, when you give it a rating and review, you make it easier for others to find and access this free content. So, please take a moment.

All right, let's do what we do. Gentle hand on your heart, should you feel so moved. Remember, you are safe. You are held. You are loved. When one of us heals, we help heal the world! Be well, my darling, I'll talk to you soon.

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