Slavery works, cried dominant voices, while for centuries brilliant minority voices, with finer insights at times, could have led a richer way. Had they been engaged, silenced voices could have broken chains that still bind most of us today. Did you know human brains build new neuron pathways with every jaded act, ruts for more of the same? No wonder recent research shows bias hardwired into brains.
Have you ever sat at tables where views runs one way only – led by dominant voices – with little facilitation ability to draw out the other side? Human brains default back to ruts, (part of basal ganglia patterns) without hearing or considering fresh possibilities on the other side. Without intervention, rut default domains of your brain could be dragging you backwards. It’s far more common than you may think. How so?
To defend one side only, some people revert to strong, seemingly rational support statements such as – It’s just an everyday decision. Have you heard it? Brain based smart skills make you less likely to be lulled by dominant shout outs on either side. Tone‘s required though, to meld two sides into living benefits for both.
Do you shatter that silence created by voices rarely engaged? Do you add value to a democratic marketplace of ideas, through facilitating differences at opposite poles? In ways that no minority voice is embarrassed, humiliated, or ashamed because they differ. What would it take?
Back to the rationale, “This is just an everyday decision,” as an excuse to dictate any one-sided decision – without hearing deeply from the others side. Rational? Look a little closer and see how top “everyday” decisions, made by untamed amygdalas, recently sank entire nations into financial chaos. Have you changed directions recently because you learned from voices on the other side of dominant financial or social decisions? Parker Palmer referred to limitations of one dominant voice only, when he claimed that few people today ever really speak and feel heard. Do you?
It takes mental agility to facilitate silenced voices. To inspire others to hear and move on beyond previously excluded views, also takes certain sense of daring. How so? Bullies insist that one way only suffices, and poor facilitators rarely possess skills to draw tangibly from diverse groups when disagreement strikes. So they distribute memos telling people what to expect, and rarely solicit feedback that asks what others expect back. Have you seen it happen?
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Created by Ellen Weber, Brain Based Tasks for Growth Mindset
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