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Self Care

black.png Rockwood Staff Shares: Self-Care by Joi Foley (2016).

         "Rockwood Leadership Institute staff members off their inspiration in a recent blog where they share how they
         individually practice self-care and build resilience."

black.png Are We Addicted to Urgency? by Michelle Gislason and Marissa Tirona (2014).

         "Have we started to conflate urgent with important and lose sigh of what really matters?"      

black.png 12 Resources for Your Self-Care Starter Kit by Maro Guevara and Sujin Lee (2015).

         A list of resources compiled by Guevara and Lee to help develop a practice of daily-self care. "Consistent practice of
         self-care can be hte underlying current driving and reinvigorating your other commitments and goals as you move
         through the year."

black.png The Discipline of Self Care by CompassPoint, (2015).

         "It's critical to distinguish between the hard work that's needed to generate hope and possibility for socialc hange and
         the work that is a personal sacrific, which will trigger resentment and despair."

"Out of the Spiritual Closet: Organizers Transforming the Practice of Social Justice, the first in MSC’s series on Transformative Movement Building, dives into the experiences of individual social justice leaders as they integrate spiritual, creative or otherwise transformative practice into their lives and social justice work. The report introduces Transformative Movement Building as an approach and framework, provides a cultural analysis of where the social justice movement is stuck and how it is being transformed through intentional practice and showcases the stories of leaders who have begun their own transformations."

Spirit In Motion: Sustainability Toolkit by the Movement Strategy Center, (2005).

Spirit in Motion believes that it is necessary to integrate sustainability into all levels of our movement work. The activities in this toolkit have been developed by Spirit in Motion to support individuals and organizations to increase sustainability in their work and lives. 

The Wellness Shield: A Tool For Reflection And Sustainability by the Movement Strategy Center, (2005).

Organizers and activists can use the Wellness Shield to reflect on each part of their day (sunrise, day, sunset and night) and then write down their activities, where they focus their energy, and what they do to sustain themselves at these times. In this way, they create individual maps of where they already have, or need to create, balance in their lives. An elder from the Lakota Nation has supported Spirit In Motion to use this traditional Lakota symbol and way of understanding.

 Journey From Mind to Spirit by Shash Yázhí, (2004).

How can we maintain hope, love and balance in our struggles for social justice? This article examines this central question through Shash Yázhí’s personal story and the work of the Spirit in Motion program.
"An interview with Gihan Perera, co-founder and Executive Director of the Miami Workers Center, about spirit and sustainability in the social justice movement. It was Neelam Pathikonda, former Spirit in Motion Director, as part of a multi-year research project by the Movement Strategy Center." 

black.png Your Rights and Obligations as a Pregnant Employee by The State of California Department of Fair Housing and Employment (2016).

California's new "pregnancy disability rights notice [went] into effect...April 1, 2016."  The notice details rights and obligations that are applicable if "you are pregnant, have a related medical condition, or are recovering from childbirth."

black.png Being (For) Justice by Elissa Perry (2016).

"Leadership is not just what we do, it’s how we be. It is our being that allows us to do for the long haul – or not. Our being can determine how or if our doing lands, as well as influence the experience, doing, and being of the people around us. Lately, we’ve been talking a lot about what leaders in complexity do. But what does it take? Who do the leaders need to be and how do they pay continuous attention to that being?"
"Social justice leaders cope with unprecedented levels of stress....  So what are you doing to take care of yourself during these stressful times? We ask, because we know that if and how you take care of yourself has a big impact. Not only does taking care of ourselves model in our organizations and our movements the kind of human dignity we hope to foster in the world, it also improves your ability to lead."
"Sometimes the last person social workers nurture is themselves. This neglect undermines healthy social work practice but can be corrected if clinicians not only pay attention to client care but also to self-care."
"A quick chat with a coworker could actually have huge benefits, to both your organization and your own individual wellness."

 Sustainable Activism & Avoiding Burnout by Activist Trauma Support.

Burnout is a political and movement issue. Every year committed activists suffer and drop out of our community because they have burnt out.

Burnout is more than just a busy week at work- it's the long-term result of carrying continual stress, exhaustion, anxiety, or isolation. Here are some tips from stone circles for addressing burnout.
Ustwo has partnered with two clinical psychologists in order to create the (scientifically sound) mental health app, based on the principles of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).

"Always choose yourself. Always take care of you. Firmly and directly assert yourself to those in your life. Be prepared to enact consequences if your boundary is not acknowledged, honored or respected." Read some of the ways in which Okona suggests people of color invest in themselves through creating space and a lovingly flow between those they care about.

black.png Stand up for Yourself Without Resentment by Rebecca Aced-Molina, (2014).

Rebecca discusses ways in which we (yes, even those of us who are not shy and already are strong advocates of our beliefs!)  can stand up for ourselves and voice our opinions in sometimes uncomfortable situations without having a fear of backlash. “I say what I need. The client pushes back. I get the queasiness in my stomach. The discomfort is there. I breath and calmly state what I need again, fully aware that this could end things, and that we are both going to be ok. The client stops and reconsiders. We reach an agreement that we genuinely both feel good about.”

“The Center for Opportunity Urbanism recently released a report by Tory Gattis, Maximizing Opportunity Urbanism With Robin Hood Planning, which advocates various policies to increase economic opportunity for disadvantaged residents. This is a wonderful goal that is sometimes overlooked in the planning process, and Gattis recommends some policies I support, including more affordable infill development and more walkable neighborhoods. However, the report primarily advocates more automobile dependency and sprawl, and the research Gattis uses to justify his conclusions is terrible.” Many of you may be interested in a developing debate concerning how transportation and land use planning affects disadvantaged people’s economic opportunities; read on to find out where and why Gattis, according to Litman, went wrong.

Warner explains the importance of Planned Parenthood, and defends it in discussing the recent Planned Parenthood controversies. Though everyone has a different stance on Planned Parenthood, Warner states that it has certainly been a good thing that attention is being brought to this issue. Read more to find out why.

black.png Emotional First Aid Tools by Vanissar Tarakali, Ph.D., (2010).

Learn how to effectively relax and de-stress using the ‘GRASP’ method present by Tarakali. Tarakali explains that de-stressing can lead to better decisions and reactions towards various situtaions, and details steps you can easily follow to achieve clarity.

black.png Meditations on Time Management by Asha Mehta, (2015).

CompassPoint’s staff Member Asha Mehta shares how positive or negative feelings about a task influenced her perception of the time she allocated to it. It was a wakeup call to understanding how something as mundane as time tracking could serve as a powerful mirror of our own values and judgements- and a starting place for personal understanding and transformation.

In this article, Gammad specifically speaks about the Asian community and racism Asians face- though it is an issue that is largely ignored- through microaggression. He then generalizes it all people of color, stating that being racist towards others or creating stereotypes essentializes someone to their race. “You take away all facets of their personality and identity, erase it through ignorance of their own humanity and use their race as a stand-in for their entirety — race becomes a prerequisite for your attraction. You are being racist, whether you want to be or not.”

See the different stages of struggles Marly came across as she, a woman of color, moved to Amsterdam, a country fairly new to racial integration. Marly battled with finding her identity, and claims it is difficult to this day. Read more to find out about the self-care strategies Marly used to find and be herself. “It made me cognitive of what happens when we step out of the borders of the United States and are actually able to put down our racial armor but can’t. We can’t function without it. So much of my existence had been crafted as a defensive response to white racism.”

black.png Building a Self Service Culture that Works by Samuel Greengard, (1998).

Greengard talks about the importance of employee self-service in today’s workforce, as well as the risks implied.

black.png Self-Care in a Toxic World by Christine Meinecke Ph.D., (2010).

Meinecke deines what self-care is, what self-care isn’t, and how to practice self-care amidst our busy, fast-paced lives.

black.png These Days, Black Self-Care Matters Too by Britni Danielle, (2015).

Danielle explains that because Blacks may not always be able to fend for themselves, especially during this time of high racial injustices, we as a community must step up to the plate and recognize the importance of promoting equality for all.

Attiah discusses both the positives and negatives of having our social media sites flooded with videos, stories, and posts of racial-centered violence. In light of that, she shares some self-care tips for black people who may feel overwhelmed by the racism and violence in their digital feeds.

Steinbrecher lists a few simple ways to improve self-care in the workplace. She states that improving self-care will improve levels of productivity both for the individual and for the teams as a whole. By combining supportive leadership and wellness together, it is possible to nudge employees to be well, not just in terms of their physical health but also their interpersonal and social well-being.

Gionta explains why self-care is important beyond the confines of our homes, and lists several ways in which small differences at work can lead to a big difference in our behaviors, moods, and productivity.

blue.jpg My Maintenance Self-Care Plan Worksheet by Shirley Reiser and Lisa D. Butler, (2015).

Worksheet allows you to document self-care strategies that relate to the mind, body, emotions, spirit, workplace, and relationships.

Cherry Steinwender, Co-executive Director of the Center for Healing Racism, discusses how racism has impacted society on multiple levels, how it is perpetuated, and how we can begin the process of healing from racism and countering racist attitudes.

purple.png Fresh Perspectives: Practicing Self-Care by the Dr. Oz Show, (2013). 

Life coach and best-selling author Cheryl Richardson offers her best advice for practicing better self-care. Learn how to stop saying "yes" to every request, get in touch with your feelings and find your inner-truth.

black.png Is the Time Right for Self-Management? by James Heskett, (2015).

When and where will holacracy, also known as self-management, work best? James Heskett's readers are conflicted as they respond to's radical adoption of the less-is-more management structure. What do YOU think?”

black.png "The Discipline of Self-Care" by Aspen Baker, (2015).

A blog that looks at the definition of self-care among social justice leaders who often make endless sacrifices in their work.

A great starter guide to those looking to simplify their life and how to spend your time doing the things that are truly important to you.