Ultimate Gifts Guides

Representation matters.

Representation matters.

Representation matters not just for us to see, but for others around us who are watching us. Every day when we walk out of our homes, we are representing our culture, our community, our race, and our mother! The world traveler T. Marie said “In every country I visit I make sure to watch my actions, behaviors and interactions with everyone I meet. What is common knowledge to us, is not common for most of the world. I learned this, when I was once asked, are there black people in America? And again, when I was told “Wow, I didn’t know you were like me, I thought you had loose morals like in the movies!”

We are the representation, for the world. Which gives us even more reason to be unapologetic even though it can be hard. Have you experienced:

  • Being judged for wearing your natural hair.
    • Wear it anyway! The youth need to see professionals and business owners that look like them, with hair like them and with accents like them.
  • Not using your natural voice, because it is not “professional”
    • Some of us must drastically change the way we talk and live in fear of being misjudged if we slip back into our natural vernacular. Some of us share the unpleasant experience of having professional contacts show surprise upon meeting us and discovering that we are Black, because they believe our voices could only belong to white people.
  • Being Judged by your name or given a nickname so it is easier
    • Correct them every time, until they learn to say it correctly and not associate it with less quality of work.
  • Being seen as angry when you’re are setting boundaries
    • Haven’t we all tried to be patient in all kinds of situations thinking it would help to avoid being misjudged as excessively angry. Did it work?
  • Being the “Only one in the Room”
    • This happens often, but instead of continuing to be alone, hold the door open for others coming up to have a seat at the table next to you.

Therefore, representation matters, an accurate and positive narrative of our culture and community is beyond vital. Continue to be unapologetically you, so we can be represented in all the beautiful and inspiring lights and not just the limited two or three.

How do have you handled these micro triggers in you day to day? Tell us. 

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Ultimate Staff
Author: Ultimate Staff

Ultimate Staff

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