One of the biggest things that stripped me of my power as a leader in the past is trying to be nice.
If I’m being honest, something that’s stripped me of my power in every area of my life is trying to be nice.
See, I’m a Black woman…
…so I don’t actually value being “nice.”
Here’s what I value, thanks to my beautiful culture:
- being honest
- keeping it real
- loving & caring for people around me
- good music
- being hella fly
What I don’t give a flying fuck about is mincing my words and trying to be “nice”….
…but I’ve always felt like I had to perform “niceness” because a white supremacist world punishes folks of color who aren’t upholding “nice” and “polite” culture.
I felt like I couldn’t be loved or respected if I wasn’t always being nice.
But being nice sometimes meant that I wasn’t as powerful of a leader as I could be.
I wasn’t always giving the feedback that I needed to give, or even worse, sometimes I had been nice for so long that I was deeply frustrated, unsupported, or taken advantage of because I had prioritized being “nice” over naming my true needs and boundaries for so long.
Trying to be “nice” and palatable for white culture is honestly a waste of my energy, and it’s a waste of yours too.
Because you’re not an asshole.
You’re on this newsletter, so I know you care about people and their feelings, and you are inherently nice.
When you are just being you – you are loving and caring.
You don’t need to “try” and “effort” to be a white supremacist’s version of “nice and polite.”
When you’re not trying to perform “niceness,” you are authentic.
When you’re authentic, you are powerful.
When you’re not worried about being nice, you instead have energy to focus on being yourself and true to what is right for you, your communities, and your ancestors.
Performing niceness is one of the billion ways that a patriarchal, white supremacist culture keeps women and femmes of color small – because it tries to fit us into a societal norm that doesn’t exist in our communities.
As a result, we spend so much energy being nice, that we don’t actually spend the energy where we need to:
with our power and our impact.
I have a quick question for you:
If you were to spend zero energy trying to be nice, how much more of your true power would you be able to harness?