Heavy, misunderstood, traumatizing, challenging, layered, confusing, unfair, unjust, draining. These words can be used to describe the lived experiences of Black people, Indigenous people, and People of Color. Our experience isn’t just about our individual lives, families of origin and procreation, and the community that we “choose” to live in. No. Our experiences are influenced by systemic injustices, years of oppression, and overt and covert discrimination. This July, and every month of the year for that matter, it is imperative that we honor the experiences of Black, Indigenous, and all People of Color here in America.
As opposed to ladling you with the alarming statistics about how suicide, PTSD, depression, anxiety, and alcoholism are continuing to soar in these communities, including the children of our communities, I’m going to share with you ways that we can rally, retreat, support, care for, and uplift one another toward better mental health! Let’s change the narrative from hopeless to healed!
- Understand that systemic and generational trauma has an impact on your life. Then you can better choose how to heal, moving from surviving to thriving.
- Putting your own oxygen mask on first is not selfish, it is self-preservation. Taking care of your own mind, body, soul, and spirit will equip you to care for others in your community more effectively. This includes setting boundaries, practicing self-care, being honest with your own wants and needs.
- Do things that spark joy in your life. What makes you laugh, dance, sing, create? What inspires you? Whatever it is, make space for it often.
- Celebrate and support one another. We have been taught that there is only space for one person of color in many arenas that we show up in. This is not true. See beyond what you have been taught and told that was born out of oppression and fear. See that there is space and help others find their own space too.
- Process your thoughts and feelings. This can be done in the safety of therapy. There is great power in the therapeutic process. Allowing someone else to hold space for you, bear witness to your story, and journey with you to make meaning and gain clarity is tremendously healing.
We, at Congruence Counseling Group, see you and hear you! If you need a safe space to process, talk, explore, engage, we are here for you!