In this video, recorded approximately a week after the murder of George Floyd, I speak about three things we can do to meet rage and use it to create constructive transformational change. The three things are these:
1. When we meet it, we inquire about the messages it brings
Rage tells us where our boundaries are. What you want or must say no to. What you will not abide. It tells us the kind of world we want to live in or don’t want to live in.
So the question to ask yourself as rage or anger arises is this; what do I refuse to be complicit in, abide by, allow to happen anymore?
2. Understand your own power to create change in the world
Taking this action involves taking your focus away from others and focusing on yourself and the power you can exert in the world. In a world which teaches you that you are not powerful and that you are not even the centre of your own universe, this can be challenging.
But not impossible.
And when it happens, you start to focus on different things, you’ll centre different voices (your voice, voices like yours, and hopefully other marginalised voices).
You start to behave as a powerful agent in the world.
The question to ask yourself in this regard is; if I could turn my attention to myself for a moment and consider what I can do (rather than feeling too overwhelming and too big), what would I do right now?
You never have to show up and do all the things. You just need to show up and do your thing. Remember that and you’ll how you stop yourself from falling into paralysis when it comes to taking action.
3. Rage and anger protects pain
If you hold space for a community, and especially if you work in the coaching or therapeutic space and you want to support people in really facing and overcoming their deepest wounds, you have to understand the significance of rage in that process.
You have to be able to hold space for their rage. That means you have to be able to hold space for you own. So it’s imperative that you break down the good girl conditioning. Otherwise the patriarchal conditioning that’s keeping you silent, also makes you complicit in the perpetuation of white supremacy.
There’s a circular path between rage and healing wounds and creating space for transformation – personal and political. If you’re in the healing professions, it’s enormously important for you to make the connection between the transformation that’s possible at the individual level and the transformation that’s possible at the societal level. When we can all connect to that, we can rapidly speed up the rate of change in the world.
And finally in the video I spoke about what you can do right now – at this time when another black man has been killed in the US at the hands of a police officer – if you feel compelled to take action. Here are some options to consider:
In business you might consider:
Rage only lasts as long as you feel stifled, suffocated, unable to take action. I promise you if you listen to what rage is telling you, it will guide you to action. Take it.
Need to unpack the patriarchal conditioning that’s keeping your emotions suppressed and unexpressed? Take our short course here.
Interested in books about rage? We’ve a few favourites we recommend right here.
Want to access the rest of our series on Women and Rage? You’ll find that right here.
We’ve also created a journalling prompt for you to download here (or by right clicking on the image below) and unpack your own thoughts around anger.
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