DeeperEngagedfor Social Justice

#StigmaIsDiscrimination: Cast Toxic Hats Into A Fire

Start:Feb 05, 2023

Duration:5 Minutes

Goal: this Cognitive Trail will end the anxiety because of our willingness to wear toxic hats and poison masks.



Published By:

Haile Clay

Summary: When the hats and masks we wear become poisons, use this inventory to take them off, cast them in a fire and stand on their ashes stronger.

Step 1

Casting Toxic Hats Into a Fire in 4 Steps.

First, my position is that we wear toxic hats based on the poison of stigma. Let me put that in context.

When I say that stigma is a barrier to achievement, what do I actually mean? Let's break it down.
In the context of social justice, my blog post CribGrown™ On-The-Spot: A Chat With Our CribChief highlights that Navitent DeeperEngaged™ is dedicated to eliminating the toxic stigmas that minorities experience, especially where they are a barrier to achievement.

I define the DeeperEngaged™ DeeperMeme™ category of "StigmaisDiscrimination" this way:

Stigma: a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person.
Is: a word used to describe an action, state, or occurrence and forming the central part of the predicate of a sentence.
Discrimination: the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things.

#StigmaisDiscrimination, in a social justice context, means "a mark that leads to action that is an unjust or prejudicial treatment or behavior that limits us from achievement."

Do you agree with that assessment?

Step 2

For minorities, especially Black people such as myself, stigma on top of racism is a double blow to our individual and collective achievements. In many high-paying industries (Silicon Valley, for one), self-stigma can cause many minority groups to feel they are not even worthy of applying for a job in that industry. I share how I experienced this firsthand as one of the few Black men in this industry when I first started. It's a vicious cycle that fosters fear, rejection, anxiety, and depression. Because of self-stigma, getting out of my way is often the most challenging barrier and vital part of any achievement.

Many of us refer to our need to wear multiple hats in society to compensate for the stereotypes we "know" are waiting to ambush us when we are most vulnerable.

Can you share a similar experience in your industry or social circles? If so, please share it in the space below.

Step 3

Many people in America have to wear many masks. Playing a role to take care of something you need to do usually is ok. However, the masks we wear are always toxic, and the hats are always laced with cruelty and poison when it comes to stigma.

Four things you can do:

1) Write down an inventory for each hat you wear. The first thing your write down is what person, place, principle, or thing makes you put on the hat.

For me, it is "presenting ideas." Put down something for you here as an example for your situation:

Step 4

2) What did or does that thing or a person specifically do to you in this or these situations?

For me, it would be: "presenting ideas makes me afraid I will not be believed or accepted as a professional or expert because my race, background, and education are different from what my audience feels comfortable with."

Put down something for you here as an example for your situation:

Step 5

3) Chose what it affects: pick from a. your personal relationships, b. professional relationships, c. ambition, d. security or c. your self-esteem.

For me, it is all of the above! What is it for you?

Step 6

4) Now, here is the hard part: tell us your part in it. What inside of you causes you to get hurt? Are you selfish, self-centered, self-seeking, dishonest, or frightened?

But you may say, "I have no part. I am the victim." If you say that, you drink the poison willingly. If you can see your part, you can cast it in the fire.

For me, my part is a. I am self-seeking (I want to be accepted and recognized for my merit), and b. I am frightened (I fear the audience can reject me, which I mistakenly believe makes me less valuable because they don't see my value).

I have decided to cast those things in the fire.
1) I do not need their validation. I need to find an audience that sees my proposal's validity and merit within the terms of my reality and those like me. If I need to go back to the drawing board on how to communicate it, fine. But I won't compromise it to fit in the hat.

2) I don't need value in the currency they are limiting their judgement of me to. I need to see my value in terms of a higher power's dollars and cents. Sometimes people tell you no because your higher power protects you from them, not the other way around.

So now I present my ideas knowing my argument is valid, my credentials have merit, and I have value the way I was wonderfully made (completely independent of who on this Earth judges it).

I cast it in the fire. I may wear the hat again, but the poison has been burned off!

Now you try it in the space below:

Step 7

Duplicate this Navitent for each toxic hat you wear. If you are so inclined, share it with others in my community "CribCheif Campfire" through my Trailblazer page or through the link in the Element above.

Elements (1)

CribChief Campfire

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