Tell us about a time a story impacted you- what made it impactful?
What is effective communication?
Effective communication supports effective subsequent action. While often volatile, words are equally mutable to the wind and rendered weightless if and when they are not received and immediately acted upon. I find this to be especially true in my experiences with engaging in conversations with organizers. In May of 2020, I was a member of another climate leadership program in which we would meet on a biweekly basis, creating a safe space for us to hold discussions about dismantling white supremacy from an afrofuturist lense. Instead of taking on the hardships that existed in our respective communities, with each week, we made it a point to further expand upon our mindset surrounding ownership, cooperation, and trust through embodying the truths of our ancestors who have come before us in a way that is true to each individual and the collective vision towards liberation. While I can definitively attest to the genuine privilege I had of holding such conversations on complex issues and doing so amongst people with altering perspectives to mine, I can additionally define the effectiveness of our weeks of communication as invaluable. The issues we touched upon still seem abstract and slightly intangible to me now, however I did learn that approaching conversations with generalizations and predetermined conclusions causes a lack of effective communication. This could easily be a projection of my Pisces Mercury natal tendencies, however I find that the older I become, the more easily misunderstood I feel in my ideal form of communication which is heavily influenced by programs such as this one; the subconscious marvels of the verbal and physical encounters that I experience on a daily basis are equally important. In the case of effective communication, I strongly advocate for maintaining a dreamlike state of openness and I strongly advocate for active listening, something that has been recently devalued by officials all over the world reaching as far as the oval office. When forced to examine the state of effective communication as it exists in the world today, I must admit that after sorting through the volatility and unsettling recent memories of the pandemic and 2020 election, I feel a considerable void within, as opposed to the genuine fervor that once used to occupy me when regarding the art of communication.