As a Certified Coach with a background in activism and social justice, Laura Weldy works to not only address the goals and missions of individuals, but how their roles impact the world on a global scale. With her expertise as coach as well as activist, she is calling on our industry to quite simply: do more. To learn and understand how to activate your role as coach and leader on a macro level, read below. To learn more about the work Laura does, visit her website here.
For millennia, women have existed in in between spaces.
We are neither here nor there, refusing definition and boundaries, making the patriarchy uncomfortable with our very being and our non-male-ness. Historically (and today) we play the role of both healer and witch, sacred and blasphemous, strong in our own right and interpreted as vulnerable through the lens of men. No, not all men. But I'm not interested in comforting the virtuous and open minded men of the world, nor do they need it.
The heaviness of an oppressive system weighs on us day in and day out. The weight grows and grows as circumstances begin to overlap; as we add our experience within socioeconomic, race, health, sexuality and a myriad of other structures to the picture, our shoulders slump. We can experience being both liberated and monitored as a consequence of being a woman in the world. Our words, our thoughts and our actions come under scrutiny simply because they come from our mouths.
And now, more than ever, the times are calling for us to embrace our ability to exist in the in between, in the grey, and to speak to that which is forming but not yet fully realized. The fear of the future that is lurking.
Whether it was a conscious decision or not, this systematic oppression is why many of us got into coaching in the first place. How many of us are driven by our desire to empower women, to give them a boost in business and life, to help them use their voice and advocate for their own needs?
We desire support and offer support in those areas that have been neglected or underserved for women for many generations. Moreover, coaching itself is all about exploring the in between, acknowledging the subtleties of our ingrained thought patterns and seeking the ever elusive clarity.
As coaches, healers, or others in the industry of support and personal development, we have a unique responsibility to speak and stand for truth. To recognize and not run from the shifting energetics of the present moment, and to show up fully for those who need it just as much as, if not more than we do. We have a responsibility to co-create a better future, both within the lives of our clients on a micro scale, and the structure of our world on a macro scale.
As coaches, we call out the truth that we witness in our clients, and we stand firm in our belief that a better reality is possible for them. We owe it to our planet and the many souls it houses to do the same. So don't back down, coach. Don't turn away from the news to focus on your sales funnel. Be present. Be engaged, and stand for the new energy brewing in our corner of the world. The possibility is great, as is the platform you’ve created for yourself.
So where do we start? You don’t need to take my word and suggestions alone, and I hope you won’t. Part of being present to and responding to the shifting energies of our current political reality within the United States is intentionally broadening the spectrum of voices and experiences we’re witnessing. I hope you’ll seek out new mentors, observe other activists, and show up in the ways you’re requested to. But being stuck in a desire to help without taking action doesn’t do anyone any good, either. So here’s where I’m starting.
Grapple with your own possibility and potential within this larger context. Seek to understand the ways in which your work is currently serving to empower or disempower the many communities that are being actively marginalized. In what ways can you make shifts to energetically, financially, in service, or spiritually support the communities that need your work most now? Our role as healer or coach cannot exist in a vacuum of our current reality. We need to do the hard work here ourselves - so that we understand and can share with others the way that our work is in alignment with the concerns of our communities, rather than feeling disjointed and disingenuous.
Make action steps a part of your daily routine. Commit to zooming out to the macro from the micro. Connect your deeper why for coaching or healing to a few concrete actions every day. A great place to start? Calling your senators and representatives’ offices on a daily basis to share your concerns, frustration, and desire. They’re in office to represent you, so do not hesitate to let them know how you feel. In fact, anytime that a Congressional office receives 15 phone calls on a specific topic, they’re obligated to notify the Senator or Representative. Calling is simple, quick, and one of the most effective ways of creating change. You can find resources, phone numbers, and scripts through a quick Google search.
Reach out to those who are advocating on issues you’re passionate about and offer your support. Allow your presence to nurture and comfort those who play a different role in political change. Use your coaching and/or healing powers to contribute to the sustainability of this peaceful movement and shift, so that we can truly stand for the possibility of our nation’s future.
What else you got coach? Feel free to join the discussion in The Empowered Coach Collective or leave a comment below. This is a collective effort, your voice and your actions matter.
Note: I will be sitting on a panel that addresses these very issues on March 7th. There are only 100 spots available and they will fill up fast. To join the discussion, Get Real on Race: A Roundtable on Diversity and Inclusion in the Personal Development Industry, click here.