This post originally appeared on the Power and Privilege 2.0 blog on 1/27/2015. I often use the word "practice" to describe my work, and I think this particular blog post explains a bit of why. So I'm republishing here and have added some of my current thoughts at the end of the post.
Various colleagues and I have recently spent time talking about the ways our thinking and acting is shifting related to our activism. For many of us, this is a direct result of spending time in deep personal reflection and knowing that as we shift inside, so must our actions.
In the past, this has caused me quite a bit of anxiety, like when I left the domestic violence field and the skills built over years working with, training, and writing about the intersection of race, gender, and violence were not easily translatable into the hierarchical, academic environment that I was moving into. But these days, I’m pretty comfortable with the idea that my activism is also a practice - something I can build skill in but never perfect. Something that constantly evolves.
Because of this, I try not to identify as an activist anymore. I try to practice activism. (Or even simply practice being just. Though there is nothing simple about that.)
There is huge liberation for me in this. I don’t have to fool myself, or anyone else, that I have the answers. I can truly “practice” creating the world I want and learn with others how to do it.
I’m learning. I’m growing. I’m changing. My activism practice needs to as well.
How about you other practitioners out there…what’s shifting in your activism practice?
Added Jan 25, 2016: You’ll probably see the word "practice" a lot around my blog and as I describe my work. Not because I don’t believe that I - and others - have a lot of expertise, skill, and competence, but to simply reflect the fact that my work is evolving and changing as I learn and grow. I don’t think I’ll ever have perfected my work. There is not finish line in change-making, and that is actually great.
This blog is a place where I share what I'm doing out in the world, reflect on what I'm learning, and also capture some of my random thoughts. I'd love these blogs to start new conversations. Please join me in the comments or send me an email about what these posts bring up