In this group, we will explore and discuss wellbeing practices both from our own lives as from literature on holistic wellbeing for women. We will use our own lived experiences as women of color (broadly speaking, black and brown women) - who experience adversities to physical, spiritual, and psychological wellbeing through gender-based violence, daily stressors and microaggressions, as well as intersecting experiences of sexism in mainstream as well as heritage cultures. There are also unique challenges to WoC in professional settings that can cause significant stress and hold us back. Because these experiences often occur daily, women of color build more resilience in order to bounce back.
The first goal is to celebrate ourselves, as always! And, the second goal is to build a communal knowledge base of alternative, community-based approaches to wellbeing including self-care for distress or crises and mindfulness in forms of guided meditations, creative expression, and dance or body movement as a fundamentally feminine expression and healing practice. We can explore spiritual approaches to healing and growth; journaling, writing-your-story, and/or emotional processing and problem solving; story telling circles; one on one bonding exercises; coping with gender expectations/messaging in different cultures, contexts and examining the effect of those messages on our self-esteem; family and career balance; writing and/or sharing powerful poetry; cultivating critical consciousness to heal and release ourselves from powerlessness and shame; and inhabiting natural spaces (plenty of that in Virginia). We can discuss challenges arising in interpersonal relationships, or obstacles faced in our careers. Clearly lots of options that can be decided by the group.
Any other ideas are welcome and group members should feel free to volunteer to lead a group. Above all, I would like to see a group come together to understand the meaning of sisterhood among a broader community of women from marginalized ethnic groups who are existing in predominantly white spaces.