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Dena Samuels is my friend and colleague. Dena is a Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Consultant and Coach who uses mindfulness to reduce unconscious bias at work and in the world. Dena has a long standing background in academia but wanted to come out of the classroom and into the world to shift the landscape of work. In this inspiring interview, learn how to increase safety and create true cultural inclusion by starting with leading from your entire self, heart, body, and wisdom.
[:01] Carley Hauck introduces herself as the founder of Living Well Awake, the new Shine podcast, and her upcoming new book — Shine- Ignite your inner game to lead consciously at work and in the world, available March 2020.
[2:16] Carley introduces Dena Samuels, who shares the experiences that led her to work with diversity, inclusion, and belonging in the world.
[9:36] How can we build relationships across our differences? You can begin by identifying just one individual in the group.
[10:27] Belongingness and overcoming the negativity bias to achieve true cultural inclusion for your entire self.
[18:12] Dena’s mindfulness practice suggestions include speaking, interactions, prayer, and more.
[21:27] Linking mindfulness to inclusion and belonging starts with naming your limiting emotions so you can move forward from them.
[27:18] Identify your biases with Harvard’s Project Implicit so that you can work on changing them even if you can’t eliminate them.
[31:49] Handling microaggressions in the workplace — how you can mitigate and handle hard situations in a meaningful way.
[35:05] Eliminating microaggressions can start with correct languaging and gentle intervention by calling people into greater mindfulness of their words.
[42:35] Embracing the shadow versus the light — increase your self-compassion and inner belonging by understanding and accepting yourself before all else.
[45:21] Interconnectedness and the environment — consider who will get hurt first and worst by natural accidents or poor practices.
[51:05] Dena leads us through a mindfulness practice of supporting interconnectedness with the environment.
[58:53] Wrapping up with Dena — start to cultivate belonging by admitting your shame and then showing up again.
The Mindfulness Effect: An Unexpected Path to Healing, Connection and Social Justice by Dena Samuels