image via LA magazine
The past week has been a lot of learning and listening. Now the real work begins. As I slowly return from my maternity leave and begin posting content, I first wanted to share how I plan to move forward so that I can keep myself accountable and hopefully inspire you to create your own action plan to continue supporting the Black community and anti-racist movement beyond this moment.
Five personal steps I’m taking:
ONE | continue to educate myself
As useful and powerful as social media is, for me it can get a little overwhelming. I follow almost 700 people and when all those 700 people start posting and reposting information I have a hard time really absorbing information and more importantly, retaining it. So reading the news on my own or reading books is usually my way of learning and analyzing. I started the book “So You Want to Talk About Race” by Ijeoma Oluo last week and I’m learning so much. I recognized that I have been part of the problem all along. I never thought that I could be part of the problem and that in itself was the problem. If you are a Black reader I want to take the time to sincerely apologize for not doing enough and realizing this so late.
It’s tough but we must criticize and examine our own hearts for real changes to happen. I will continue to educate myself and share tools/resources that help me as we all move forward. Here’s a comprehensive list of resources, books, podcasts, and movies that I’m using to educate myself: bit.ly/ANTIRACISMRESOURCES
TWO| mindful shopping
I love finding new brands, businesses, boutiques to shop from and I’ve completely missed the mark on shopping from Black-owned businesses along the way. It was never my intension but it was something I was never mindful of. That obviously has completely changed. Here’s what I recently purchased from a few black-owned businesses along with some standout shops I found complied into this instagram post so you can save & revisit whenever you’re feeling spendy. I will be making a conscious effort to continue finding, supporting, sharing, and shopping from Black-own businesses moving forward.
THREE | keeping brands I work with accountable
Something that’s always bothered me about this industry is the inequality in influencer marketing. Moving forward I will ask brands if they are including women of color in the campaigns I’m part of. I will push my brand partners to strive for more diversity and inclusivity. If there isn’t any diversity in the campaigns I’m offered, I will firmly decline.
FOUR | teach our son about race and diversity
Becoming a mother is something new for me. I mean I’ve only officially became a mother two weeks ago when Cassian was born but John and I both are committed to raising our child to be kind, to speak out against injustice, to be anti-racist, to understand and recognize our privilege, to lead with love, to be Christ like, and only through our own actions as new parents it’s our job to continue to educate ourselves, to have difficult conversations, to raise awareness, to stand for justice, to listen, to donate, to be a better ally, and to take action. To start we ordered a few children book that talks about race and diversity for him to learn early on. He’s only two weeks old but hey, it’s never too early. Here’s a list of children books if you’re also interested:
FIVE | vote!
I know for some voting can be daunting especially if you have no idea who and what to vote for but it’s important to take the time to do your research and vote for the right candidate and proposition that aligns with your beliefs. By voting, we can literally play a role in choosing our leaders and changing our laws. Here’s a few resources to help find out what’s on your ballot. You can learn about propositions and candidates for your state:
I’m not perfect. This is just a start. I also know this isn’t a race and I’m taking action in the ways I can. I hope we all can keep each other accountable and remember everything we learned for the rest of our lives. I’ll say it again, but it’s time for the real work to begin.
Will end this post with a quote that always resonates with me:
“You may live in the world as is but you can still work to create the world as it should be.”