Power & Equity Challenge
Our newest learning series
Beginning January 2023
Seats for 2023 are limited. Once the limit is reached we will start a waiting list.
Pre-requisite Course: RUP Core Training recommended, but some prior RUP training required (You can take our free self-paced intro course available on our website).
We hear a lot of people from many different social locations and identities who say they want to do something about social inequities, abuses of power, and systemic oppression.
However, we also hear that people either don’t know what to do, feel emotionally-labored-out, hopeless, powerless, othered…or some combination of these states.
That’s why we’ve developed this challenge. We want everyone to have an accessible, sustainable, compassion-and-connection-centered space to learn, grow, and collaboratively develop their Power-and-Equity Consciousness.
What is Power-and-Equity Consciousness?
Power-and-Equity Consciousness (PEC) is a term that was developed by Dr. Amanda Aguilera to refer to the state of awareness of social power dynamics, like those in interpersonal power differentials as well as collective and systemic power, that influence equity in relationship.
Why do we need to develop our PEC?
Power is present in every relationship. As your PEC develops, you are more capable of seeing power dynamics as they occur, inequities that show up in those power dynamics, and deciphering your responsibilities and vulnerabilities within your relationships.
When you have a framework for understanding power dynamics, the language to talk about it, and the skills to navigate it, you are better resourced for creating and maintaining relationships across difference.
Here are just some of the outcomes you can expect as you develop your PEC:
Create Communities of Belonging
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Our goal is to create a beloved community and this will require a qualitative change in our souls as well as a quantitative change in our lives.” This challenge is designed to help build Beloved Community where there is mutual belonging, collective care and active responsibility.
Know Your Power
Often we can feel powerless when it comes to navigating relationships with difference. After this training, you will not only know what power you do have, but also how to use that power in ways that can empower others. Knowing your power and the accompanying responsibilities and vulnerabilities that come with it is empowering for you, can minimize harm (misuses/abuses of power), and empowers others.
Understand Your Brain on Power
Neurobiology has a powerful influence on how we perceive the world and others. Understanding how the brain organizes around power in the power differential can help us navigate power dynamics with more integration and understanding.
From our ancestry, cultural past, and the systemic power that shapes us, you will be guided through how multi-level power works to create and maintain systems of oppression. You will get an introduction to systemic power so that you have the full picture of power dynamics.
Work with Emotion
From shame to rage, confusion and frustration, intense emotions can arise when we talk about power and difference. With PEC, you can recognize emotions as they arise and choose to respond from an anti-oppression lens. Learn what it means to self-regulate without “shoulding” others.
Go from conflict-avoidant or competitive to conflict-positive by gaining the perspective and skills needed to transform interpersonal difficulties within power differentials into generative conflict and opportunities for deepening your relationships
A 1-Year Journey
2nd Friday of the Month, 10am – 2pm MST
Offered once a year beginning in January, we offer 12 live, virtual learning sessions (most are 4 hours each unless otherwise indicated) that build on each other to support you in developing your power-and-equity consciousness.
After each session, an optional 1.5-hour Integration Session within the same month is offered for deepening into the session’s content.
Information Session & Introduction to PEC (2 Hours)
This is a free Information Session available to anyone interested in taking the Power & Equity Challenge. We will go over the journey progression, introduce the guidelines and give you a chance to ask questions and get to know us and one another. This session is required by all participants but it is meant to help each person decide if it is a right fit (and right time) to take the challenge. (Full refunds available anytime prior to 2/1 if you attend this session and decide it’s not right for you.)
Psychology & Neurobiology of Power
Based in research, this session explores our brain on power – how the biological, neurological and psychological intrapersonal experience influences our interpersonal relationships and how power differentials impact our internal experience. Understanding how the body, mind and emotions work in power dynamics gives us an advantage for successfully navigating our relationships.
Cultivating Personal Power
If you’ve ever wanted to feel more empowered and to expand your inner capacity – this session will give you the opportunity to explore all things personal power. Integration is a key concept for inner growth and the ability to relate to yourself in an integrated and compassionate way will give you the foundation for making the development of your Power-and-Equity Consciousness more sustainable. You’ll also get to discover here how personal power is the key to using our power well in all the other types of power.
Understanding the Intersections of Power
With this framework of social power dynamics, you’ll come to understand that there are multiple types of power – and they are all operating at once. In this session, we’ll do a deeper dive into systemic power and how systemic lenses influence our personal, role and status power. We will also look at “Ourstory” – from ancestry to collective wounding (from past to present) and how we can address ongoing systems of oppression.
In this session we will go deeper into status power and explore our social identities, status power differentials and the way status power shows up in different systemic lenses. We will also learn about the dynamics of privilege and oppression and learn how to navigate them with a Right Use of Power lens.
Collective Power is the only type of power that can shift systemic power. This session explores the different types of collective power, how collective power forms, can be sustainable and ultimately shift systems.
Navigating Power Differentials
With the understanding of systemic power, we move into the complex power dynamics present in every interpersonal relationship. We’ll look at the responsibilities and vulnerabilities in each part of the power differential and address your particular challenges in relationships across difference and power.
The Art of Giving & Receiving Feedback
Feedback is essential for our own learning and growth as well as for developing and maintaining healthy relationships. Giving and receiving feedback is not only a skill to be developed, it is an art form. In this session you will be introduced to the anatomy of feedback, its critical components, and obstacles to effective feedback experiences. You will also have the opportunity to practice giving and receiving feedback.
Introduction to Conflict
In many western cultures, conflict is generally approached with avoidance or competition, especially when there is a power differential involved. From a restorative and conflict transformation lens, this session will help shift you into a conflict positive frame so that conflict can become a more generative experience in your life.
Restorative Approach to Harm
Building on the previous session, we get to go more into the practice of engaging in conflict. We introduce the restorative conversation and tools for working through interpersonal difficulty and harm with Power-and-Equity Consciousness. This session gives you a way to practice difficult conversations so that you can more easily turn toward instead of away from conflict.
Commitment (2 hours)
Perhaps the most important course of the challenge. Here we get to explore what responsibility really means, and craft our commitment for developing Power-and-Equity Consciousness. We get to challenge each other and encourage each other, and form accountability partnerships for moving forward.
Celebration (2 hours)
Celebration is such an important part of any cycle – when we successfully complete a challenge we need to recognize our own and each other’s willingness to engage at this level and honor the courage with a virtual party and next steps.
How much does it cost?
This rate is for those who frequently struggle to meet basic needs or are facing temporary financial crisis.
This rate is for those who are mostly able to meet basic needs and have some discretionary income.
This rate is for those who comfortably meet their basic needs and have significant discretionary income.