On the day of Derek Chauvin’s verdict, a book arrived at my door that shifted my understanding of violence. My Grandmother’s Hands by psychotherapist Resmaa Menakem bravely exposes the unpinning of racism through trauma. At first I thought the book would further grow my literacy around racism, and develop my allyship. After consuming it over a weekend, I emerged with something even more — insight into our collective ancient human history as victims and perpetrators of systemic brutality, aka our shared historic trauma.

“For the past three decades, we’ve earnestly tried to address white-body supremacy in America using dialogue, forums…

An essay by EQUUS Faculty Dan Weil, CPCC

My heart was pounding. I thought, “I’ve got to let this tension go. I’ve got to relax. Focus on controlling your breath. Try not to get hurt. Breathe.” The moment that thought connected with my chest, the large white Brazilian Lusitano horse laying at my head let out a cleansing breath in that wonderful way that horses do. The five other horses laying in a circle around me quietly continued to hold this space. Guided through three or four more breaths and I was at the edge of a trance. What held…

Are you an empath? Or do you have a beloved empath in your life? People who acutely feel the emotional, mental, and even physical states of others are called empaths. They are porous individuals who sometimes find it difficult to sense the difference between their realities and the realities of others. Empaths are the nurturers, healers, carers, the highly sensitive people that give (and give) often to the point of exhaustion and burn out.

It is estimated that empaths make up 15–20% of the population, meaning that there is a chance that you could be one, or most certainly know…

Last week while on my weekly date with my mother, she shared with me a story about a friend’s recent declaration that democrats were child-eating pedophiles and that Biden had stolen the election. What concerned her was not that someone was proclaiming such absurdities, but that the person espousing them was a longtime friend, someone with whom she shared values, ethical beliefs, and basically similar left-leaning politics. Until now.

“What is going on?!” she worried. “I am hearing more and more of my friends say things that do not make sense to me. What’s even more confusing is that they…

When I was in college I had a nickname — Federal Express. I cringe a little now just to write that, but it’s true. Between my to-do lists, my Filofax scheduler, my between-class strategies, and my running shoes I had my life hacked, or so I thought. Efficiency seemed to win me friends, opportunities, and good grades all in one fell swoop. Just outside of college graduation, I bagged positions no one my age had any business landing. But my supervisors were entranced with how much I could get done in a millisecond, let alone an entire day. Headhunters sought…

2020 will be known as the year the world abruptly halted. The pandemic locked down more people at the same time worldwide than in any other period in history. By April — more than half of the world’s population was confined indoors. We thought then it was only going to be temporary, and now as we enter the darkest part of the year, we also enter the darkest part of the pandemic.

Hope flirts on the horizon, yet we have several more months of loss in-store — loss of lives, of livelihoods, homes, holiday gatherings, opportunities, of friendships, memories and…

A better way to social change than shaming oppressive mindsets

At EQUUS, we donate our meeting space and learning campus at Thunderbird Ridge to a local multicultural and multiracial organization founded and led by Native women called Tewa Women United. Once or twice a year, they gather here for their Elder meetings.

Founded in 1989 as a support group for women from the Pueblos of northern New Mexico, Tewa Women United concerns itself with the traumatic effects of colonization, religious inquisition, and militarization leading to issues such as alcoholism, suicide, domestic and sexual violence, and environmental violence. They create safe spaces to transform and empower one another through critical analysis…

It’s time to free it from your oppression and let it do its work

But we’re never gonna survive…unless, we get a little crazy.
Seal

Recently a friend asked me how I was doing. “I’m angry,” was my simple reply. At once they rushed in to comfort me with advice on how to deal with my anger as if anger were some kind of a parasite, disease, or unwanted house guest. I stopped them, “No…I’m really grateful for it. Anger is very useful for me.”

It seems like there is more and more to be angry about — each day another atrocity, another indignation, injustice, insult, and offense. If the current multi-layered tsunami of…

What would you do if you suddenly realized you were a racist? In the midst of the peaceful Black Lives Matter worldwide protests I took it upon myself to dive into as much antiracist material as I could get my hands on. My Kindle running hot, I read in a weekend White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander and listened to Brené Brown’s recent interview with Ibram X. Kendi author of the New York Times bestseller How…

You may not realize it, but you have the key

If you’ve ever been to a circus or traveled somewhere exotic, you may have encountered elephants either doing tricks or taking tourists on rides through the forest. How are such enormous creatures trained? All around the world a tragic process is still being implemented by elephant handlers. They start by training the elephant when he is a baby and weighs only 200 pounds. At that stage, they shackle his legs to a twelve-foot length of chain and stake the chain into the ground. During this process, many other unspeakable events happen to the baby elephant. Yet the key thing the…

Kelly Wendorf

Founding Partner EQUUSinspired.com, author, master coach, horsewoman. I create conditions for transformational change and the actualization of meaningful lives.

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