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Privilege, Discomfort, and the Courage to Pay Attention

I was walking out of the West African Dance class that I TA’d in college when a tall, slim African-American guy from class caught up to me on the green. He was dressed all in white with these gauzy, drawstring pants that gave his whole style a timeless quality. He had big hair and nice eyes.

“You’re beautiful,” he said. “I’ve been working up the courage to tell you that all semester.”

I flushed and smiled, totally caught off guard by his sweet directness.

Flattered and suddenly feeling awkward, I started asking him a million questions about where he was from, his major, where he lived on campus, and all kinds of other data I thought might distract me from the fact that I had no idea what the appropriate response to a handsome guy telling me I’m beautiful might be.

He told me his major was Political Science, and somehow the conversation led to me telling him that I never paid any attention to current events.

The record scratched and stopped short. Silence. Attraction shifted to repulsion.

He was appalled that I could consider myself a good citizen without being aware of what was going on in the world.

I was 22 and until this past November when Trump was elected president, I’d stood by my policy of being relatively oblivious to what was going on around the world. It never affected my life much, and I didn’t want to energize the negativity by giving it attention.

The morning after the election this past November, I awoke to my husband telling me who’d won. I was in total shock. I couldn’t see how a man who’d publicly disrespected my gender and just about every other group on the planet other than white men (and probably a lot of them, too) could now be in charge of our country.

How had we let this happen?

The morning after the election I awoke to the fact that way more people than I was aware of think and feel really differently than I do. I awoke to the fact that there’s so much more healing from our legacy of white supremacy, racism, sexism, and all other ways the belief in separateness manifests than I had realized.

Charlottesville, Barcelona, and the conversations circulating about privilege and how we can rewrite the ending of our collective story, like this one from Brené Brown and this one from Wild Mystic Woman and this one fromMotherWiseLife.com, have woken me up even more.

I see so clearly that my having been checked out from what was going on in the world for so long has been part of the problem.

I feel guilty about it, yet I’m not going to let that guilt stop me from diving into the conversation now, despite knowing that I will most definitely say something wrong and mess up along the way.

I see now that silence and ignorance are passive complicity.

I’m writing this because I would imagine there are at least a few other people within our community who have been operating under the belief system that not paying attention to the terrible things happening to other people around the world is okay, and perhaps even helpful, because we don’t want to give the violence and hatred more power with our attention.

Listen, I’m a student and teacher of the law of attraction. I’ve said many times that what we put our attention on grows.

I’m going to amend this previous statement and say instead that:

What we put our loving attention on heals. 

There are things happening in our country and world that are awful. I can’t even think about the sex trafficking industry or the fact that innocent men and women are killed because of the color of their skin without my eyes burning with tears and feeling nauseous (both of those things are happening right now).

But ignoring them will not make them go away. Ignoring them is a passive, silent agreement.

My mother has wisely told me every time I’m going through a hard time that we have to feel it to heal it.

Ignoring past hurts and traumas and covering them up with meditation, affirmations, and spreading the love and light doesn’t heal them. This applies in our personal lives as well as when it comes to collective hurts and traumas in our communities, countries, and the entire world.

We can still be the light while we look at the darkness. In fact, we must.

Healing requires looking our darkness in the eye. Healing requires slogging through the mud. It’s dirty. It often feels really bad. And if we don’t do it, whatever progress we make is temporary and superficial.

So, I want to say publicly that I’m sorry for opting out of the conversation until very recently.

I’ve been blessed with many things in my life. One of them is an ability to communicate and another is a platform to do it.

So, here’s the deal:

I’ve changed my policy of not paying attention to what’s going on in the world so that I don’t energize the negativity.

Here’s my new policy (which is open for updates when necessary):

1. To pay close attention to what’s going on in the world via trusted sources without succumbing to the addictive nature of the media.

2. To talk with my community about things that are uncomfortable to talk about (like this whole post, for example).

3. To use my platform to share what I find to be helpful and hopeful ways we can all be part of the solution.

​​​​​​​4. To take care of my incredibly tender heart through rest and boundaries while still staying engaged.

​​​​​​​5. To hold myself and others accountable for our actions without the use of shame.

​​​​​​​6. To feel how bad it feels to really know how bad some things are as a means to healing.

​​​​​​​7. To remember to pay attention equally to the beautiful things going on in the world so as not to become bitter, fearful, or hopeless.

​​​​​​​8. To listen to people whose beliefs and experiences are different than mine so I can learn.

​​​​​​​9. To know just because I can disengage and keep living my life as though others aren’t being harmed doesn’t mean I should.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​10. To be willing to look the darkness within myself and within our world in the eye so that it loses its power.

There’s a scientific principle called chemicalization that describes the phenomenon by which things get worse before they get better. Just before the sun rises, the night is the darkest. Just before women transition into the final stages of labor and the baby is about to come out, we say we can’t do it anymore and we want to quit.

I am choosing to believe that we’re in the part where it gets worse right before it gets better. That if we can breathe and stay with the process and look one another in the eye, clutch each other’s hands, and ride the waves of discomfort without drowning in them, that we’re about to give birth to something beautiful.

I hope you’ll be there with me, paying attention to all of the moments of pain and bliss and everything in between that are required to welcome a miracle.

OVER TO YOU:

How are you feeling in the wake of Charlottesville, Barcelona, the election in the US, and other recent global events? Have you recently become aware of the need for all of us to engage in order to heal or have you known this for a long time? Or do you disagree? What specifically are you doing to be part of the solution in your community, online, or in any other capacity? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

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  • Hi Kate,
    Thank you for writing on this difficult topic. This is something I have struggled with as well. I don’t watch the news but I can’t help but see things that come across my Facebook and hear what is going on. So you have made me consider making a change and becoming more engaged in the news. I have a sister who lives in Florida and while I am in Ontario and somewhat away from your politics she does share her concerns. It is not to become fearful but to be able to focus light and healing on those who hurt. I wanted to share a painting I did this weekend with you that represents the struggle of light and dark now and how the Light, Love and Passion exists behind the dark cloud. I have put the link in the website section of your comments so hopefully you can see it. Thank you for being such a great leader in these difficult times. Vonnie Snyder

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Thank you for sharing your insights on this topic Vonnie – and thank you for sharing your painting! I’ll check it out!

  • Sarah Madisson says:

    I always enjoy your words and what you do in your work Kate. This blog is so on the money with regard to how I have also been in disengaging from the world and what I am now experiencing and need to put in place in order to re-engage. Thank you so much for writing it.

    I think it is so important to talk about this stuff openly and engage. And i’m also curious, and perhaps concerned about finding the balance between talking about it ( are we just fueling the fire/frenzy?) and acting on it ( what is the right course of action when the situation is so unbelievably complex and confusing?)

    We have big work ahead of us. Thank you for the reminder to stay engaged, present and curious to what is happening in our world.

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Thanks so much for writing in Sarah and for being engaged here. I think talking about it is super important because it shifts our beliefs and awareness which shifts how we act in the world. And then donating however much we can to causes dedicated to healing racial separation is important. Also showing up at protests and events and calling our legislators. And being kind and loving within our own communities online and in person. These are the daily actions I’m taking. I’m sure there are more possibilities but this is what I’ve got so far!

  • Brava, Kate. You are right. It takes courage to lift the veil of darkness and look it in the eyes, but it is incredibly empowering because that disgust we feel when seeing it is our entire being telling us right from wrong. But once seeing it, we are not helpless. I may be the most engaged in my circle of friends/ family in the current events in the United States (and other Western democracies) and have looked into this darkness with revulsion. But I also may be the most calm and certain of a positive outcome because knowledge is power. As a person who trusts light to heal and transform, I can say that shining our collective light in dark places is important and necessary. The world and our country may be terribly out of balance right now, but I also know that very powerful legal mechanisms are in place to counteract this imbalance and once the destructive people are out of power, we will rebuild our society…together…and with renewed purpose. I am visualizing a Quantum Leap in growth of humanity after this phase ends. We can shine our lights to heal and to expose those who wish our country and people harm. Keep shining your brilliant light, dear Kate. Your gift for communication is important.

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Oh thank you for your wise words Elizabeth! I’m with you. I have no doubt of a beautiful outcome eventual as we all look the darkness in the eye to dissolve it and replace it with something built out of love.

  • Caryn S. says:

    My legislators hear from me at least 4 days a week now. I am relentless in my resistance.

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Awesome! Thank you for being that example and for inspiring those around you into greater action!

  • Sherylee Honeyghan says:

    I appreciate this post Kate. As a woman who is interested in world events and wants to be aware of what is going on at home and at large, while still maintaining positive outlooks and mental focus, I found it unrealistic to adopt the philosophy of not watching news because it was negative. I do make sure I don’t over consume and am aware of different points of view. Especially in a time when the media brings more topics to our attention because of the many different sharing platforms, as a Black woman I believe if you are not informed how can you help move towards solution? Silence is deadly and if people keep saying “it’s not my problem” nothing will change. These things going on are everybody’s problem because we are all human and while one is going through it today someone else with be affected by something else tomorrow. I appreciate your honesty and willingness to be real enough to explain that you can be aware and involved while still taking care of yourself. Ignorance is NOT bliss.

    • Kate Northrup says:

      “Silence is deadly.” Amen to that. I now see this and therefore I can never unsee it. Thank you for speaking up and being here in this community and the global community, as well.

  • Heidi says:

    Kudos, Kate! I’m African-American and have long considered myself apolitical. It was the silence on my Facebook feed that finally made me speak up. The silence was deafening. And when my white husband pointed out that only white people can end white supremacy without violence, and that silence was culpability, I realized two things: 1) I am complicit. And 2)my silent friends were culpable as well, and i told them as much via my Facebook page. Again, the silence was deafening. After so poking and prodding, several friends (most of my friends are white) said that they simply didn’t know what to say or what to do. I felt this was a reasonable response. I was then inundated with white friends looking to me as a guide to tell them what to do. I gently and kindly had to tell them that it’s not really my job to help them deal with the discomfort of these political times, nor am I their guide to addressing their white privilege. This is important. Don’t expect black people to teach you how to address these issues of bias and privilege. You must do the work. It’s hard, uncomfortable and for many foreign territory. But this must be done for the greater good. We all become better for it. Thank you for foregoing the business as usual emails, and speaking to this very important issue.

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Thank you for weighing in Heidi. I agree that it’s not your job as an African-American woman to teach me how to deal with this. I am definitely listening to the perspectives of African-American people, as well as other People of Color, so that I can be educated, but I am not putting the responsibility of telling me what to do on them. Thanks for this important piece of the conversation. And thanks for being part of this community and for speaking up.

  • Pauline says:

    Kate, I would have to disagree with your blog post . You have mistaken your sudden interest in world events , by picking a “side” and writing about the events that are currently causing a rift in this country. Why not focus on the events , and seek the truth in them instead of fueling the fire ? How did Trump offend your womanhood ? How is it ok that people want to demolish history because they are offended ? Why did ESPN remove a reporter so his name doesn’t offend people ? Why wasn’t Obama removed since maybe his name offended other people ? Why are you focusing on aligning with the negative to heal ?

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Thanks for sharing your perspective, Pauline. I’m aligning myself with love. And what love does when others are being harmed is to pay attention and help. So that’s what I’m doing. A mama bear doesn’t look away when another animal is attacking her cubs. She steps in and protects her young. All children are our children so I’m doing what I can with my mama bear energy to step up, say something and do something.

      • Pauline says:

        I am sorry , maybe I misunderstood but your response does not make any sense . This is not a mom shaming disagreement where you protect your child to align with your parenting beliefs . What are exactly is your new openness to the news aligned to ?

        • Kate Northrup says:

          Hey Pauline – I’m happy to answer your question but I’m not sure exactly what you’re asking. Do you mind rephrasing it? Thanks!

  • Thank you, Kate! This really resonated with me as I almost feel like I’m bearing my head in the sand. I have never been drawn to politics, and I never watch the news. My disdain for the current POTUS is huge, and I didn’t vote for him, but I don’t know what to do. My family in Germany is very political, and I will be there next week. I guess I should pull my head out and actually pay attention so I will know how to have an intelligent conversation around what’s going on. Which news sources do you rely on? Everything seems biased.

  • Rachel says:

    Hello,

    Deep appreciation for putting this out there. I needed to hear this, badly. My one question, what trusted sources do you follow, and why?

    With Gratitude,
    Rachel

  • Christine says:

    Dear Kate,
    closing your eyes never makes sense- you have to face the world when you want to set your footsteps savely on the ground. In this times of terror you MUST live your life with the most intensity and love you feel in your heart. Don´t hide away! Speak out loud what you feel, all your anger and pain, but don´t panic. Meet people, talk to them and act jointly.
    Here in our City we have a network called „schools against rassism“ for many years- long before the escalation of the last months. As almost 50% of our pupils have a migration background or are children of asylum applicants, it´s our daily buisness dealing with prejudices. Our motto: Don´t look away, don´t accept any form of insults. We demand on respect and cooperation.
    Giving these kids the feeling of being accepted strengthens their dignity. A person who feels save and loved is less susceptible to radical thoughts or discrimination.
    Yours, Christine

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Yes. I totally agree with your words. And it’s really beautiful that your city has been doing this work for a long time. “Don’t look away.” Exactly.

  • Lana says:

    Word, Kate Northrup! This is my experience as well. Moving from Canada to the U.S. about 8 years ago, I first realized there was a big difference between how the news was delivered in the U.S versus in Canada. The amount of fear and negativity was overwhelming, so I checked out.

    Fast forward to the morning after the election, I told my husband we were moving back to Canada. Sometime during that day, my guides spoke to me. They said that this needed to happen to stimulate change. People were too complacent and the only way to make change was to make them really uncomfortable. They also told me I was brought here (the U.S) because this country needs lightworkers right now to help facilitate this change. It is crucial to be informed right now so that we know exactly where to direct our love and healing.

    Thanks for writing this post! It’s validation that things are aligning as they should! XO

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Thank you for staying with the process and staying in our country to be part of the solution. Deep bow.

  • Kelly says:

    Thank you, Kate! I’m so with you on #1-10 and on the concept of chemicalization happening on a broad scale, right now!

  • Miranda says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your voice on this topic, Kate. Your post made me feel really proud to subscribe to your newsletter and be a part of your community.

  • Sheila says:

    Kate, thank you so much for sharing this perspective. I have also spent the majority of my life ignoring politics as they “do not interest me.” I also had a similar first date experience with the same record scratch, attraction to repulsion twist when he learned I did not watch the news. My mom was also furious with me for my lack of attention saying I was the problem with this world. Me? I was the problem? The one spreading my light and love to the world? After this election, I realized she was right. I wrote a message of apology the days following the election when I found I could not stop crying and sleep was difficult. I followed it up with a Goddess of the Month interview with a grief counselor talking about what we could do since ignoring obviously was not the answer. And then… I went back to my life. I went back to ignoring the news because it hurts so bad and I don’t know what I can do to change it. I love your revised statement of What We Put Our Loving Attention on Heals, yet I have to admit, I don’t know how. I don’t know what to do to be an agent of change. It is so far out of my realm of talents and knowledge. Thank you for starting this dialogue and I hope together we can find answers to action steps that aid in the healing.

  • Cielo says:

    Hi Kate,
    Wow! You’re describing what my life has been like for several years to a great extent. I’ve sort of hung around the periphery of news, events, etc., barely wanting to engage or informing myself because it terrified me. The feelings of helplessness, powerlessness, and anger are fed profusely by these and, because I have experienced so much trauma in my personal life, I didn’t feel strong enough to handle the “outside” or contribute anything positive.
    I have focused so much on myself, my own healing, that I opted to stay out of the bigger game until I felt stronger but the truth is I will probably always feel afraid of retaliation. I’m just hiding behind this justification. It feels safe but it’s an illusion.
    I was born and grew up in South America and I feel a subconscious sense of not being really safe, of injustice, even living here in the USA.
    My daughter went to the rally in Phoenix last night to protest because she said is was her civil duty to do so, to take action, not just discuss or write about her feelings in social media. I’m so proud of her!
    You’re right. The time to actively participate in the global healing has come. Just like in the directions for the oxygen masks given in flights in case of emergency, I have already put mine on so I can help put it on the ones that need it. We need to help each other, everywhere.
    Thank you for writing this and opening the door for many of us!
    Much love ❤️ 🕊🌎🙏🏼

  • Brenda Siemer says:

    HI Kate,
    I am glad you came to this conclusion!

    As a child/student in the late ’60’s we were more aware of global issues with the Vietnam war taking off, and Barry Goldwater running in Hawks clothing. My friends were in my high school graduation class were shipping out to their deaths. Many many.
    Hey, as a woman it was easier to keep your head down and go to classes in college, which were my responsibility.
    Later, as an actress, I discovered writers who had survived Vietnam, and artists actors who rallied for awareness through their work. I was blessed to have married one.
    Roy, always on the cusp of bringing life to the stage in an effort to shine a light on community and personal responsibility was an inspiration. From joining the first women’s march in DC in the 1960’s, to lying down in the central meridian of the road, dressed in black and resting beside a cardboard coffin, he joined a community protest of the war in Iraq in 2000.
    On Broadway he performed “Trumbo,” the story of Dalton Trumbo, the legendary screenwriter and activist who stood up to the House Un-American Activities Committee and McCarthy. Of course he was black listed and suffered the truth of those times. I have moved in a much smaller forum, but have done the best I can, and will do, for the 2017 elections.
    I suppose that my point is that opportunities WILL arise for each of us to find our voice and make our best contributions.
    Love, Brenda

  • Cheryl says:

    I cringed at first when I read your blog. I thought here is another person shoving their opinions down my throat. Half this country voted for Trump, which speaks that half this country has been affected by policies from our government and are fed up. There were a lot of changes in the workplace that affected those I love. But…you said you were going to be more aware and bring love into the solutions. I said to myself, well that would be different than what the world has to offer. So I told myself to be open. Please share your sources. Unfortunately, no matter where I turn the media has taken control and I have no idea where to find other sources that will align to the love you are talking about.

  • Catarina says:

    Kate I honor your willingness to share the truth about burying your head in the sand, and sharing that story from college. I haven’t spoken about this topic enough myself outside of my close circles of friends, and just today shared a post with my community about conscious motherhood as activism and 12 Ways to Raise Diversity-Conscious Children (http://www.catarinaandrade.com/diversity-conscious-children).

  • Asha says:

    It takes a lot of courage to speak what you have just spoken. As a First Nations Woman in Canada, all of the truth sharing (my own included) has shaken up a lot of deep wounding and ancestral pain. And of course, healing. Your words are conscious and beautiful. We are all constantly learning and growing. Thank you for being an ally to those who need your voice. Miigwetch, Asha

  • Nina Leibow says:

    Thank you SO MUCH for your words!! You have touched my heart deeply! I have always felt like you do regarding keep keeping negativity out of my consciousness as much as possible. (but I have always felt a bit guilty and ashamed that that I don’t understand government and politics because of how complicated it is).
    I am a US citizen currently living in Canada for a few years training to become a yoga therapist. Here, people are always asking me how I feel and what I think about what’s going in my home country. My response is usually tears. I feel totally helpless and at a loss for words, especially any that are “intelligent” regarding politics and government.
    Will you please share with me (and all your readers) the sources you use to open your eyes and ears to what is going on. I would like to become informed and don’t know where to turn.
    I am a believer and conscious participant in the law of attraction so I have kept myself in a bit of a “happy bubble” and try to keep the bad things out of it. I would love to follow you as you guide me toward what would be helpful so I may participate in helping the healing that needs to happen. I really want to follow your lead. I TOTALLY resonate with every word you wrote in this article. I am so glad I took the time to read it! With so much coming into my inbox, I am glad I didn’t delete your newsletter. I do hope to hear back from you.
    With gratitude, Nina

  • Janine says:

    Kate, I hear you and I am with you. I too have been hearing bits and pieces of the world’s issues for longer than I’d like to admit and have turned to my personal world, looking to stay focused on only the positive.

    But since I became a mother and then started JBird Fitness I now find myself feeling guilty for “not-knowing” and not helping. I know guilt doesn’t get us anywhere, so how do we make a shift without it sucking in?

    Don’t worry, I’m not looking for a definitive answer here. But I worry it will consume me.

    My business is about helping women feel great in their body and showing them how that feeling will spill over into their daily lives, when they take even just a few minutes a day to move & exercise. So, I guess my real question is, how do you share your beliefs (the good, the bad, and the ugly) without losing the light you are trying to spread?

    I’m struggling with is.

    But I am going to print and hang your list, to get started.

  • Sonja says:

    Wow Kate
    You explained me to a tee. I avoid all mainstream media because I figured feeling bad doesn’t help the world feel good. But I am aware of collective consciousness so I will focus on healing and sending powerful positive intentions to the world. We are in an election year here in New Zealand so that is something I really need to be paying attention to moving forward. Thanks for the reminder!

  • Janine says:

    Meant to write “how do we make a shift without it sucking you in?”

  • Adrian Hall says:

    Thank you! I have struggled with this for so long and this is a perspective that feels in alignment with how I want to be in the world. I appreciate your vulnerability, authenticity and accountability. I want to join you in this pursuit.

    Interestingly, a woman in my spin class asked me about how my clients react to things in the news, if they bring things up in session about what is happening in the world. I reflected and told her they haven’t much since the election.

    I acknowledged that I mostly opt out of news cycle and that this may be why many of my clients do not bring this up in session, even if they aren’t aware of my approach on a conscious level. Maybe the fact that we, as empaths and light bearers, have often opted out has more of an impact on the collective than we realize. Aside, of course, from just the obvious impact of living under a veil of privilege.

    She suggested I check out PBS news. I haven’t explored this yet, so I can’t say that I suggest it. But your blog post urges me to do that.

    As you explore and find the sources that are in alignment for you, I would love to learn about what you find helpful. I will continue in my exploration as well.

    Thank you again for living with integrity and sharing that with all of us.

  • Jennifer says:

    Thank you for telling your story. Stories heal. And we have so much healing ahead of us. It’s a time to rise, and deepen our understanding of the shadow. We can witness, speak to it, and transform it through radical honesty, sensitivity– and a lot of work. Coming together as a community on behalf of love remains non-negotiable. Thank you for your battle cry.

  • Thank you Kate. I too have checked out with the news at times. My life is busy, it’s only negative news reported, etc. etc.
    I believe in what Louise Hay and many more like her say; put your energy on love. I choose love and peace and try to send this love to everything in my life in hopes that it will grow!

  • I am exactly where you are now. A year ago I couldn’t have told you half of what was going on in the world. I did not watch the news because I found it too ‘upsetting.’ Now I feel it is my duty to watch carefully what is going on in our world and in the greater world beyond the U.S. To be silent is to be complicit. So I have been energetically shielding myself each day and then walking into it. I try to keep a cap on my outrage and despair and just keep asking for guidance about what I personally can do, in addition to holding the world in peace.
    President Obama said something that inspired me last December as he was receiving the Valor Award. He said that the world always arcs to the good but at times we have to nudge that arc to make that happen. (his words were more eloquent) I am all about nudging and I’m glad you are too.

  • Hi Kate,

    Thank you for taking the time to speak from your heart. I agree! Paying attention and being good examples for humanity is very important right now.

    I think there must be many sad and scared people in our country for us to have Donald Trump as President.

    I personally believe people who harm others are in pain or fearful. Treating them badly won’t help them or us.

    I am committed to facilitating positive change by paying attention and standing up for what I believe in. That doesn’t mean that I don’t have good boundaries or am not respectful.

    There are many wonderful people in this country and this world. Thank you for sending a note reminding us to pay attention and make positive changes in our communities.

  • Lisa says:

    Thank you so much for this post, Kate. As an African American woman I will say that your voice is so needed. To move our country along we can’t always have the same folks speaking out and feeling the pain of missed opportunities for compassion and understanding. Events over the past few years have made me realize this. I would love to just stick my peace, love and good vibe feeling head in the sand, but I can’t. This is the real work, the stuff we are faced with now, the reason why we are here. We are the change and we are conscious activism, moving our communities towards light and love. I think it can be that simple- just to be conscious and then reset or systems on a regular basis to stay aligned. Uncomfortable discussions can be awkward but I personally welcome them knowing that there is enough care and concern cushioning the dialogue to meld more closely together with love. Blessings…

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Thank you for weighing in here. Your message means a lot to me. And thank you for saying it can be as simple as moving our communities towards love and light and staying in the tough conversations, resetting as needed. I love that clear direction.

  • Michelle says:

    Kate, I read this and had a really big ah ha moment! I too had checked out. My thinking was if I need to know something important it will be brought to my attention and it always has. I use the universal laws and believe in them. God created those laws and they cannot be broken but they work in accordance with our free will.
    Thank you for revamping the way I look at things and I am going to adopt your list as well!
    I am a healer and have been through more than most humans to get to this point in my life. I believe that learning something everyday is important to improving who we are and clarifying what our life purpose is.
    I could ramble on about all the crazy disasters in my life and how as I kept my faith God worked and continues to work them out in amazing and miraculous ways but I would be writing a book lol!!
    Love and blessings to you and thank you!!

  • Alee says:

    Kate,
    I love you, and am truly inspired by your voice in this world. I have followed you for a long time now. But I am one of those Trump supporters. I am a good person, and hope I am not made to feel excluded from this community. While the majority of your followers may deride him, some of your followers will support him. Please, remember we are here, too!
    Thanks, Alee

    • Kate Northrup says:

      All are welcome Alee! I don’t think it’s wrong to support Trump. I have very close friends and family who do. While I personally don’t, I think what’s needed more than ever is to listen to other’s opinions that vary from our own and have compassion. So please stay!

  • Kyley says:

    Terrific post, Kate, just so well articulated. I’ve been thinking a lot about this topic and, like you, feeling a bit guilty for being a caucasian female living in a country of privilege.

    Having said that, I want to offer comfort and permission to women and men who can’t look at the world’s problems yet. I think we have to reach a safe level of healing from our own traumas before we have the capacity to heal (or even bear to see) the world’s pain.

    People who are focused on healing their insides first – that’s right and good. We have to gain stability and strength before we can carry more than our own weight. And I believe that working our own healing is in fact also working the world’s healing. So even if you can’t look right now, your work is still worthy and enough.

    I’m grateful to have arrived at a place where I’m ready to hear this wake-up call and join in the larger conversation. And it took 28 years of work to get here. (There was A LOT of crap to wade through!)

    I want people not to feel guilty or inadequate because they’re not here yet and I want to say: we value and appreciate you where you’re at now. We’ll hold the world, including you, in our hearts, and we’ll welcome you when you’re ready to join us.

    Love, Kyley

  • Leesah says:

    I feel at this time I cannot afford to voice an opinion on public forums (facebook ,twitter etc) My parents ,who were very successful business people said…”you are in business,you cannot express an opinion publicly,you cannot afford to alienate half of your clients” . I do attend protests and sign petitions quietly , but until I am making a decent amount of money I don’t want lose half my customers.

  • says:

    Brava Kate, respect

  • Megan says:

    This was a great read! I sit here in my privileged space and struggle with this new journey to get my finances under control. To be honest, I feel like a brat to complain about money (even though I am in serious debt), because I have so much more than others. Furthermore, I feel powerless against our current administration, who could take away my student loan forgiveness and change medical insurance laws to render my services uncovered (I am a psychologist). I am so happy to hear your values and this allows me to trust you more on my financial journey.

    • Kate Northrup says:

      Your awareness is beautiful Megan. Thanks for chiming in with your experience and may your path to financial wellness be blessed!

  • Elisa Beck says:

    Hi Kate, I’ve been talking to folks about being out of their comfort zone by being involved in some of the “mucky” stuff that’s been going on worldwide, but especially now, in the U.S., in our own communities. It’s not my favorite thing to do, but I’ve realized, those of us that have the capacity to be involved in local politics, policy making, and movement into our Regenerative Economy, the time is right NOW! Once we figure out how to take care of ourselves and our inner ecosystems, it’s time to venture out into the world in whatever way we can to demonstrate, organic food production on our front yards, side yards and backyards, time to make sure our neighbors stop spraying poisonous herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides on their lawns, pay attention to whatever moves you, a bit out of your comfort zone and ACT in between meditation, prayer, mindfulness, movement, and LOVE!!! It can all be with LOVE! Blessings for all you are and all you do! :) P.S. Another process I work with is here: sustainablemonroeville.blogspot.com. I’m looking forward to participating in the Climate Reality Project in Pittsburgh, PA in mid-October. Here in Pittsburgh, we are at Ground Zero transforming the oil and gas kingdom into our Renewable Economy. And YUP, It takes so many of us out of our comfort zones speaking Truth to Power!

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