With the Holidays Upon Us

December 21, 2016 | Diversity & Inclusion, Overcoming Bias

With the holidays upon us, I am wrapping presents anticipating excitement when the presents are opened and listening to my favorite holiday tunes. I love the way I can get things done and focus on music or audio books that interest me. They even help when I am doing some not-so-interesting chores. They wrap me in a wonderful place when they are related to holidays and take me into the unknown when they teach me things.

I know for many of us the concept of bias is the realm of the unknown.

But bias, while it may be how your brain is wired, isn’t something you are stuck with. Listen to this sample of audio book version Overcoming Bias: Building Authentic Relationships Across Differences — the book Matthew Freeman and I have written. It’s right here.

Prevailing over your unconscious bias gives you more control over your reactions and lets you learn to trust people who are different from you.

It opens you up to new, exciting experiences and broadens your world. Try this exercise to raise your own awareness of who you choose to allow in your life. List the five people you trust the most along with their traits: race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, occupation and personality type. Now consider how they are similar to you and different from you. Do you find that their similarities always mean they are the most trustworthy?

You may discover what matters to you most about others is not what group they belong to, their ethnicity or what they do for a living, but that they and you understand each other and can count on each other.

And you may discover that had you paid attention to your bias initially, you may have never developed these important relationships. The overwhelming wonderful feeling you can get from that may make you want to join in with me and others this season wishing goodwill to all!