“Every time you are tempted to react in the same old way, ask if you want to be a prisoner of the past or a pioneer of the future.”
– Deepak Chopra
To undergo a real transformation, it’s imperative that you delve deeper than simply establishing lists and goals. Because your core values and beliefs motivate everything that you do, they need to be examined. Sometimes we lose sight of those values, and it becomes hard to not only identify them but recognize how they impact our behaviors. Journaling is a way to connect with our core values. It is also a powerful exercise in challenging them.
Part of becoming a diverse, equitable, and inclusive leader is reflecting on and challenging core beliefs and biased frameworks that you may have (whether you are aware of them or not). Looking inward in an honest manner and questioning what we know and what we believe is hard and uncomfortable work. That’s why journaling is such a powerful tool. Because journaling helps people face “overwhelming emotions,” according to The University of Rochester Medical Center researchers.
Political writer, artist, and educator, Christian L. Frock, states, “A culture of inclusion necessitates decentering biased frameworks, both individually and institutionally. This work requires an awareness of differences and a willingness to engage cultural sensitivity beyond our individual needs. It is a never-ending work in progress, and it starts by questioning everything.”
Create Meaningful Change Through Journaling
“Writing is medicine. It is an appropriate antidote to injury. It is an appropriate companion for any difficult change.”
— Julia Cameron
As Maud Purcell LCSW, CEAP, describes, “the act of writing accesses your left brain, which is analytical and rational. While your left brain is occupied, your right brain is free to create, intuit, and feel. In sum, writing removes mental blocks and allows you to use all of your brainpower to better understand yourself, others, and the world around you.”
Usually, we rely on our left-brain for problem-solving. But often, especially when it comes to the more emotionally tied issues surrounding diversity, inclusion, equity, and belonging, the answers we need can only be found by appealing to our creativity and intuition, right-brained activities. Writing allows for surprising solutions to seemingly unsolvable obstacles.
The understanding that comes with journaling advances effective problem-solving because it helps:
- To clarify thoughts and feelings
- To create time and space for inward reflection
- To raise self-awareness
- To reduce stress
- To resolve disagreements with others
Journaling Helps Guide the DEI Evolution
Journaling can help you heal according to The Chopra Center, “acknowledging and confronting difficult emotions allows the healing process to begin.” And that healing goes beyond a single person and translate across organizations.
In addition to these benefits, journaling allows you to track patterns, trends, and progress. When situations appear insurmountable, or you feel stalled in your progress, you can look back on previous dilemmas that you have since resolved or can see how far you’ve already come. As Oprah said of her journaling, “It’s astonishing to be able to track your own evolution – who I was, who I’m still becoming.”
Journaling is scientifically proven to raise awareness. That’s why we’ve created a free eJournal to coincide with the Diversity Collection. The journal will help extend and personalize the learning journey on your path to becoming a more aware, understanding, and empathetic leader. To learn more about the free journal and our online diversity, equity, and inclusion learning program, follow this link: https://diversityequityinclusion.com/online-learning/