Surviving and Thriving as an Activist - Proud 2016

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[00:00:00] This podcast is brought to you by the Elgar Oceania rainbow human rights and health conference, and pride [00:00:10] The workshop we're having today is I have a number of passion areas that this is one of my oldest, so many, many years ago now. [00:00:22] My first training was an education. So as a teacher, [00:00:28] and then in a strange way that sometimes careers can take on corners, I ended up working in civil defense. And I used to think it was funny, it was my standard joke, I used to say to people that I was the head telling a body around, which was true, but not very healthy. So I have a PhD and Association and is very good at doing it. And civil defense was my perfect safe place because I was working with other people who are probably traumatize them dissociated as I was mostly Vietnam fit. They were guys, they were mean. And, and civil defense. Either a number of years, I rise up to very senior position. I was regional Civil Defense manager here, and, and Metro sync various stuff of the disasters, not only here in New Zealand, but in the Pacific. And what I noticed when people came back, they were different people. And I didn't understand that I didn't understand what it happened. And so I started doing some research into training. And I found out about a model that will see that by a fireman called differential, an interesting lay, a blue collar fireman in New York, and he had been on his way to a wedding with his wife and my suit, civilian cat, you'd come upon a car accident, and a car accident, a man had been impaled with a bar that had come up from the side of the road, and FJ had been in this fire truck, he would not only have hit the equipment, but he would have had everything else that he needed to save this man's life. But he was the end the rain and his suit with nothing. And it traumatized him. And he completely felt a bit. And so and he was invalid out of the fire service. And so he went and studied psychology and various other things and put this model together, which was called critical incident stress. So I went off to do this training. Because I wanted to look after my staff and do it in an appropriate way. And to do something for the people that I could see had been affected. It's interesting, because in those days, it was nothing to do with me, it was a manager looking after this stuff well, and it was only when I, myself had to leave civil defense, because I hit a wall, what we would describe and spilling out that I started my own journey. So as a mental health professional, I see a community of people that are very good at caregiving. extremely good, usually at caregiving. And what we're not very good as, as a profession is caring for ourselves. So again, I'm seeing very high rates of burnout in my profession. But more I look in the community, my community, my family, and I say burnout, but I have the resources now to look and think about, you know what's going on, and I'm seeing the lateral violence in our community. I'm seeing the fact that because we are a highly marginalized community, it is easy as to attack each other than it is to be clear about where we need to go without our anger and our frustration. And also, there are real issues in our community that need addressing, and we we sometimes struggle how to do that. So this workshop, and Tommy and I've developed that comes very much out of my own experience. And so what we want to do today is to create a safe, safe place to talk about some of those issues. But more, what I would love for this workshop is people to go away was both commission, and a passion, that the most important person that you can look after is yourself. [00:04:47] And until we know how to do that really well, we're actually crap looking after other people. And it's a really, really hard thing to learn, and to do and practice. You know, and I'm here at this conference, I came back from Canada, three and a half weeks ago, and I haven't had a day off, I've been working 12 hour days, for head of flight inspection at the moment, I would be evicted. You know, there are an open half empty two cases. And I think, here I am practicing everything that I know not what to do, you know, how do they get into that space again, so we can have all this knowledge, but we can still fall back into these places. And part of it is, you know, a fictional desire to attend to the sense that made attending to say, How can we do that and do it cheaply. And I'm not going to be there by myself. But after this conference, I'll disappear for a couple of weeks, people will not be able to find me. And I'll be doing the things that I know that really grounded me, that take me back into a healthy place in our be paying real attention to the food that I'm eating, and doing the things that I know that I need to do to laugh because for me, laughter is the thing that that grabs me and brings me back into health place. So that's an introduction to my philosophy, I'm now going to invite Tommy to talk to you and then we're going to do some work together as a group. [00:06:21] With this workshop, I'm kind of the AFI to some of the concepts that man is talking about. And I guess that demonstrates the work that we do in this community, because we don't do things alone. And we don't do things. We don't do things in a way that is unsuccessful. So the way I've met some of the philosophy Manny has talked about, and some of the insights that I'd like to share in this workshop today is around the beauty of making mistakes. And the beauty of not of not knowing something, and how sometimes our experiences of resilience are so powerful, we are so resilient. That our understanding of vulnerabilities that we have in ourselves can be really unmute. And and I guess the notion of activating is sometimes there's some of us that are quiet in background spaces activating and some of us who are really forward in the world and quite recognizable. How do we manage you know, so those ideas of meeting those dynamics within our communities is where we often find those mistakes, and how we can, how we can work alongside them mistakes and hold them in ways that aren't going to harm us, or rate reengage any sense of failure. So because often in in activism work, there's a sense that you haven't, you know, that idea, basically, where it comes from is the idea of, Okay, I'm going to get up again, today, we're going to talk about this thing with the person. And it might be the gender identity, it might be the lack of family, or it might be the word problems, it might be, because, you know, it might be that they're they running a community group, or they've got a support group, or they've got an activist group, all of these problems. And I have for me to do that work. And listen, I have to be interested in it. It's really unsuccessful if I'm not interested in it. So I grind and to, you know, I'm really fascinated by the concepts of mistakes and successes, and what those mean to each of us. So I guess when my philosophy sets around the idea of sometimes people call it self care, but sometimes it's more about self awareness, I feel, then just, you know, the self care is the actionable part where we, okay, I need to sleep in. Okay, I need to eat well, okay, I need to risk, you know, those are those things that we, we know, we have to remind ourselves off. And with, what's that next phase? And what is that self awareness, so you can sustain the work you're doing in your communities. And so that you're not, you are able to access the care for yourself, so you can be a valuable father. And, you know, so that's sort of my little philosophy [00:09:42] around [00:09:44] activating. [00:09:47] So what we're going to do now, it's a decade [00:09:51] is given to small groups. And there's three questions no one everyone on the group to answer the first one, Kool Aid This is that instead [00:10:04] of going on, and our community [00:10:10] really bad, like, [00:10:18] that is a caveat. It's [00:10:22] not people. Okay. So the really key thing is, this is not a time to blow off a better individual person. So it's to take the person out of it and turn it into of what the issues Bay is the things that you know about yourself, you might not do these things, but the things that make you feel good [00:10:47] that that really ground key that put the grant put the energy back on. [00:10:53] And some people might struggle with that. Because not always if we had the chance to think about it. [00:11:05] Okay, just thinking about it. And so that that's to get you started. So we've got a big space. Now, if you are comfortable. With your discussion being recorded, you can come down here and do it. This one great can do that. But I'm suggesting that we've got quite a big space here and people can, you know, and that's weird. Yeah, I don't mind if people sit on the sticks, that is the group still up. Okay, so we are you. So I'm going to seduce sticks up their steps up there. And we've sort of got another great there. And those of us who've got old, amazing old bones can stay in Cheers. And just maybe a very small group sort of talking horizontally [00:11:48] to three people. [00:11:49] So just going back, so this is a session about i. So if people statements to stay the right, I encourage them to stay safe. And with them groups of you can self monitor so that there's a general sharing of time. So whether you're in a group of two or group of four, so there's the am the bay and now wreck my somewhat tied brain and see if I can remember what he was going to be otherwise, Tommy and I'll come up with a newseum, that's fine as well. Remember what we were talking about before it's okay to make mistakes. It's okay to have kind brain as well. So let's just break into those groups. And I invite people who are feeling sort of a bit excited on the edge to go with people that they don't know. But if you feeling tired and and frazzled and fragile, then stay with people that you know and feel safe with. Either is fine, thank you. [00:12:54] We've got an exercise to learn, because part of this is recognizing the preciousness every single life here in the room. Right. And I said to this weekend, sometimes forget that. And we talked and a lot of the work that Tommy and I do is around suicide prevention and suicide wins. And we know what the figures now be horrifying for our community. And as I said at the opening, if we go at the margins, the numbers look ghastly. So the fact that you here as extraordinary, as it means you are survivors, just a little exercise. So we have to interact with the person, not touch them, because it's not appropriate, just looking into the eyes. And to see the piece of next year and the piece and next year CMU. We're just going to do that for probably 30 seconds. Does it work? So you got the right numbers. [00:14:03] And just at the end of the prices, you say to that person, I see you and the other person says back I see on senior we're just [00:14:18] going to do a swap do it with another person doesn't matter how you [00:14:28] see. [00:14:35] And sometimes we need to do that for ourselves. When we get up in the morning. I know for some of us, it is extraordinarily painful to look in the mirror. [00:14:44] Okay. [00:14:46] It's not always comfortable. He's looking better says but then the privacy of your bathroom. just reminding yourself the preciousness of your being. Okay. [00:14:57] And we also just share sorry, sitting [00:15:01] you just ran out of nowhere [00:15:08] but no, no, no, no no don't look in we just want you to know that they are not standing up to look out for we just [00:15:15] kind of standing because we want to thank you [00:15:19] just going to go around this is our chance to say out loud was was no just saying out loud. That one big thing you're on top thing that bugs you about our community. So stop here. [00:15:35] I think one of the things that I went to was a disconnected. And I felt like the [00:15:43] disconnection and [00:15:47] being silenced and every genre of identity. silenced innovation. [00:15:57] explosiveness [00:16:00] not [00:16:01] inviting people to be friends. [00:16:05] explicitness not inviting people want to be friends. [00:16:10] Amongst the volunteers, when they don't do what they said they're going to do. [00:16:13] Okay, so people not doing what they say they're going to do. [00:16:20] Power and and misuse of that power in our community and our phone. [00:16:26] Within the vulnerabilities, [00:16:29] and misuse of power, [00:16:36] sadness and frustration, a lack of resulting in compassion, [00:16:44] sadness around the lack of resourcing and our community. [00:16:53] I suppose exclusive, nervous and misuse of power, [00:17:01] lack of community [00:17:06] pulling together around difficult issues, lack of community support, [00:17:10] lack of community pulling together and lack of community support. [00:17:16] Mine was more a personal failure, a feeling of failure, that I've been working for a long time, and particularly with the medical community [00:17:30] really made no difference. It's [00:17:36] a very visceral, the hell position of a seat to say [00:17:44] I'm not being counted, not being counted. So almost [00:17:50] an anger over some voices been privileged over others so that, [00:17:54] yeah, some people in neighborhood and others take more space. [00:18:01] Some voices being given privilege, and some voices never being heard. Thank you just take a moment. And let's honor what's being put in the room. [00:18:12] Every single one of those things was important. [00:18:19] To me, I'm gonna ask you to leave this next round and witnessing the statements. Fans that feel good to do. [00:18:33] cinny singing and having music and really loving men energy [00:18:38] singing and loving the boys [00:18:44] creating with words, writing, [00:18:48] creative writing. [00:18:51] I also quite enjoy writing but my honest answer would really be chocolate. [00:19:02] Spending time with good friends and being in nature. [00:19:11] Me fencing with foil. But another thing is attending conferences like this with wonderful people like yourself [00:19:21] meeting and engage in conferences. And [00:19:29] sword fighting [00:19:35] with foil [00:19:38] trying to take space for myself when to just do nothing. [00:19:49] Being in the water, Pisces and also getting takeaways watching Netflix and hacking around on the internet. [00:20:00] Being [00:20:03] watching naked and fighting around [00:20:09] traveling with my family, my wife [00:20:16] spending time with Spano and my flatmates and five cats [00:20:23] spending time with a bunch of fluffy cats hanging out with family and finally eating [00:20:32] eating food desert. Okay, let's specify [00:20:39] spontaneous road trips and credit typically good spontaneous road trips and creating things not at the same time. [00:20:48] Yeah, lots of introductory song and chatting my favorite passion to reading books, reading books, with with [00:21:01] holding that duality of those things that nurture us, in some senses, literally. And other senses the surly against the first things that we need, which are those things that deplete us and MTS. So I'm not going to go around and say who had a plan. But what I'd like people from this workshop today to play this is not suddenly we're going to check up on is to have people leaving today with a mini plan. And that first thing is get planted reminding yourself of the importance of us of being and then seeing, what I want you to think about is those big things that bug us see the things that get under our skin know for whatever reason they can get under our skin is what you can do to protect yourself. And we're going to have a conversation because I'm sure people have got different ideas and talk idea might work for me, or I might think that's ridiculous. That wouldn't work for me. But it might stimulate some thinking. And then just this little tiny play that you're going to take away, and we're just going to work and peers. So we're still just going to chicken with the right one. Okay, nice, big things that bug us and in the fence it feel good to do and just cheering each other. Okay, what might your money plan look like? Now, when I was doing that work with civil defense, and I met the guy that originally developed it, he was a paramedic. So it's he used to say, you know, I take my pops. And he wasn't meaning literal quotes, but he had some steps that he used to do different materials, his name to sort of chick and told me that I know and my red lights are starting to go up, I loose them, you know, I put my camera down and a shot and walk away with one of the most precious things in my life. The other thing that I do is I start falling over. Okay, so that tells me that I'm tired and dissociating, you know, I'm not grounded, I'm not connected to them, I vape lights, severe things that I need to chicken. So thinking also about what you know yourself, yet might be that I'm not sleeping, it might be then instead of having that one sweet treat that I've given myself permission for I've been in a hot chocolate cake. And that might make me feel good right now. But you know, tomorrow, I feel absolutely terrible. And it starts affecting my self image. And again, I'm not judging here. These are, these are things for ourselves. So for the next quarter an hour, we're developing NPS some details around that plan. Okay. Now, again, let's have the same rules that we had before the challenges to work with someone you don't know that this is about staying safe. So if you want to do this work with someone that you do, now, I said peers, and if the safest person in the room is got a buddy just taken with them and say, Can we be a three, because I would really like to work with you guys. Some again, there's not work. So that has to be appear, it's just the bigger than great gets the least time you're going to have to develop your plan. So some people that go right, I'm going to near the plan of an agreed with TM a chance of a talking experience to give yourself the gift of thing and a great way you get the chance to talk a bit more. And again, same thing I don't mind if people pretend the amounts and disappear, that's fine. [00:24:46] Let me get [00:24:49] right, so [00:24:52] come back at five minutes passport. [00:25:00] Today, we're realizing that we didn't do what we normally do at the beginning of any workshop, which is we provide a space for people to introduce us at this sort of [00:25:12] lecture theatre space three, make him take responsibility for for that today. So what we're going to do now is beginning go around, and we're going to do that. So your name, you've preferred gender pronoun, then I don't want the details of all your plan because it's personal to you. But but just a summary of what you've decided to take out of here the book that you you want to share. Normally, when we're doing this work with people that you have a contract with someone who's not going to have you done your plan yet, but the support person that says going, you know, how you rolling come? Is it going? Okay? Is there anything that I can do to help not checking in on details at all, I'm not going to require anyone to do that. But keep that in mind. Because if we hold it inside our own heads, and we're changing that slightly by speaking out loud, it's not likely to happen. But for some of you here, there might not be a safe person that you feel okay to actually tell your plan and have that. So, you know, when I said about the exercise in the morning, looking in the mirror, you can have a silent conversation with that person and just kind of as it going today and kind of chicken with each other, like, is it shift? Or is it actually rolling, okay at the moment. So just going around. And we don't have huge amounts of time. So if people could be mindful of that, so name, pronoun, and then a little bit of detail about the plan. So [00:26:52] my name is money. [00:26:55] My pronoun is the VM. [00:27:03] And what I'm going to do on Sunday, when all this is finished, is to spend some time out on my deck, waiting because my plants have not had any attention at all for the last really since Christmas. And doing that. And I'm just going to go back I've got my own plan. It's just needs looking at and I'm just going to go through myself and chicken. And Tommy and I colleagues, I'm not expecting Tom to chicken on me at all. But when I've done that, I'm just going to chicken say what's going on. And if I'm needing anything from my colleague or be explicit, but probably all I'm going to need is come to the lesson not doing anything, but I'll be very clear when I have that conversation. It's I want you to do something or I just want you to be my witness. [00:27:59] Hi now as shieh here, [00:28:06] I think my plan might be to say no. [00:28:12] And [00:28:16] I don't know how I'm gonna chicken with a chicken with myself [00:28:21] at night time and those awake times, I think the [00:28:26] hardest way for any of us to care about our community to win. Is that simple, you know? [00:28:35] Really, really [00:28:37] thank you, [00:28:40] Margaret, and she [00:28:44] come up with a plane. [00:28:49] But I'll try not to be such a perfectionist. Thank you [00:28:57] turn on TV. You see her pronounced [00:29:01] my mini plan is at the end of the conference today. I'm glad to be chicken where it and then [00:29:09] from there. Men [00:29:10] might be just trying to prepare for my workshop in a limited amount of time and constrain that and then have this amazing [00:29:19] amazing Nathan and I'm female pronouns. Part of my island Johanna is communicating with family and just telling them how I feel because I tend to bottle up but [00:29:35] I'm Geraldine preferred pronouns shieh I suppose networking with wonderful people like yourself, because boy, there are so many interesting things I've heard so far. And on a personal level [00:29:51] trying to get better at fencing and finishing series three and five of the Twilight sign [00:30:01] kilda My name is HEM pronounce inaccurate we brought it into the immediate so tonight I'm going to have a really nice hot shower maybe about and I'm gonna gonna do a little bit of work on my presentation for tomorrow. And then I'm just gonna spit it clean make it look pretty I'm not gonna do brain [00:30:34] killed on deck [00:30:37] going with [00:30:39] boyish pronouns. [00:30:42] And [00:30:45] I think I'm getting the swing of what hit them. So I think my thing is, I'm just basically hanging out to cuddle my brand new nephew. Yeah. Yep. So that's gonna be my job. [00:31:01] Jason, he male pronouns. [00:31:05] When I get back to Melbourne on Saturday night, I got work Sunday, but I'm planning on having Monday off and going to see a couple of films. My husband so [00:31:16] cute everyone. I'm Melissa Shiva pronounce [00:31:20] my plan as to let my oldest sister know that I have a plan. And let her know that when I'm not talking to her for a week, [00:31:29] it's not because I don't like her anymore. It's because I probably am pushing her away. And so I particularly need her to keep checking in with me and those times. [00:31:42] cure. My name is Kay. I don't care what premiums any or none is fine. Jim does not really my thing. [00:31:54] And [00:31:56] I was thinking creatively about my plan. So that not just do a checklist. But I've been learning about agile methodology. And I think I want to do a mini agile would where I've got my to do my work in progress my done my sort of, you know topics and actually break it sort of them in a way that because I've always got too much on the go, but I actually enjoy that. And so it's more about how I manage it and prioritize [00:32:22] it. And [00:32:25] other than that also, Colleen my collections like the clothes for secondhand sale, it's coming up a new horizons trust to running the books because the book fear, you know, all those things, I collect things and I try and redistribute them. But [00:32:45] my name is Bella is she her brand. [00:32:50] New so we're thinking in the immediate plan [00:32:54] to go to the supermarket and buy great food. [00:33:01] My name is PX I use she in her pronouns today. [00:33:06] And I, I think I need to find a mentor actually, from within our community. So [00:33:18] hi, I'm Tommy, I use [00:33:21] EMIVM yesterday, I used guy Pearson. [00:33:28] And I'm trying to think of my chicken plan which is very hard because my brain is really busy. And [00:33:38] jacket staring at me tonight what that is, I could see you stare at me. So I'm going when I'm going with my chicken is drinking water and eating some vegetables, no more sandwiches for the next few days been busy. And I'm also going to my other part of my chicken is I will make sure I bring money once I get back to Oakland. And I will just randomly ask how they doing? And then they'll ask me how I'm doing randomly. And we both won't admit that we're checking in. [00:34:22] It'll be kind of cool. Like, hey, hey, doing good yet. [00:34:34] And there was one other aspect which is [00:34:37] exactly what jack was saying that there there is a little Bobby that are going to meet and cuddle on Sunday, which always generates me. And also hopefully I can connect with my god daughter is here in town at the moment. So cuddling little, little humans will be ready. [00:35:00] Thank you, everyone, say this workshop in these are the fastest one and a half hours that you have a month they just go by so fast. So all we've done is [00:35:13] scrape across [00:35:14] the surface of what self clear, looks like, now works. But I'm hoping there's a few seeds that might be planted on the ground and allowed to grow. The other thing I would say be gentle with yourself. If you get two wins, then you know it's not working. It's not working, like start again or think okay, I want to rethink this self care. idea. But I come back to the point that I have to see that the most important work that you can be doing is looking after yourself and it's not a bad thing to say no to a friend or colleague. Even somebody in pain, it's actually okay to go. Coming I can't do that now. In chicken on Wednesday, maybe you need to find someone else my my buckets dry. I can't do this now better, okay. And we really maybe the hardest things to do. Because if we get depleted even if our friend is really a need, we're not going to be able to listen appropriately you are not going to be able to go appropriately. So that's the end of our workshop because I want to give people just a tiny 10 minutes but a space to transition out of the space and into our last plenary for the day. So the end of that workshop and thing [00:36:46] in my hand is a brilliant in your own cap but

This page features computer generated text of the source audio - it is not a transcript. The Artificial Intelligence Text is provided to help users when searching for keywords or phrases. The text has not been manually checked for accuracy against the original audio and will contain many errors.