Six Cultural Barriers to Family Acceptance

Posted on Dec 1, 2014 in Gender and Sexual Orientation, Lessons from the Field | 0 comments

People often ask me about the cultural barriers that I see working with Latino families around family acceptance. I hesitate to answer this question because I don’t want to feed into stereotypes. The term culture is often used to talk about people who are considered different than the mainstream, but not about U.S. culture in general. This post discusses dominant cultural beliefs and norms related to gender and sexual orientation that I grew...

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Six Practices for Building Staff Morale from the Inside Out

Posted on Sep 22, 2014 in Authentic Communication, Lessons from the Field | 0 comments

Non-profits are magnets for people who want to make a difference in the world, yet many people who start out with high ideals end up down and discouraged. There is often one big obstacle to staff morale –  the morale of the leaders themselves. When leaders are deflated, overwhelmed and/or on survival mode, they aren’t good morale boosters for the organization. This is why attending to the morale of leaders is often a good starting...

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When Your Buttons Get Pushed: Cultivating Self-Empathy

Posted on Jun 21, 2014 in Authentic Communication, Lessons from the Field | 0 comments

“Someone said something that really pushed my buttons. I was too upset to use my listening skills or respond in a positive way. What can I do to deal with my own feelings when I’m triggered?”  This topic comes up often in my Authentic Communication workshops. Here’s a response based on tools that I have used in my own life and in coaching others. If you are getting triggered you probably have a need that isn’t getting met. One way to...

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How Gender Boxes Harm All Children and What We Can Do About It

Posted on Apr 9, 2014 in Gender and Sexual Orientation, Lessons from the Field | 0 comments

My early parenting experiences were sometimes hard. I had a son who liked to play with dolls and dress up as a princess and I didn’t know if that was okay. I’ve learned a lot since then, and today I’m sharing some of what I’ve learned about the impact of gender boxes on children. As early as two years of age, children learn that there are different rules for boys and girls that they are expected to follow. They learn by...

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Intent and Impact Across Difference: 10 Tips

Posted on Mar 20, 2014 in Authentic Communication, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Lessons from the Field | 0 comments

  Negative Impact Happens Have you ever said or done things with the best intentions that ended up being hurtful or damaging? Or maybe someone said or did something that didn’t sit right with you? You’re not alone. This post provides some tips for how to respond to such situations. Messages we send or actions we take are often received differently than intended. This can happen more often when cultural differences are involved, because...

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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion – Why are we talking about this?

Posted on Dec 20, 2013 in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Gender and Sexual Orientation, Lessons from the Field | 0 comments

In my work with organizations around topics of diversity, equity and inclusion, I often hear that a few people are asking “Why do we need to talk about this?” This usually happens in organizations that serve very diverse communities, with staffs that aren’t as diverse. And, usually, there’s less diversity in the senior management and board. So, isn’t the answer to that question a no-brainer? Well, actually, no, it isn’t. I am glad...

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