I found in myself a Bias FOR male ‘teachers’-or is it AGAINST women ‘teachers’?

Day #1 of 30 Days of Insights, and how I turn them into actionable wisdom that changes my life.

Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

INSIGHTS! They do me no good sitting in my journal, awareness unused. So I’m turning them into ‘transformation’ in my life, instead of simply ‘information’ or fleeting awareness.

Over the next 30 days I will take one insight each day -one that has languished in my journal over the last year, doing me little good. I’m putting them in play, then watch to see what happens in my life…

Any powerful idea is absolutely fascinating and absolutely useless until we choose to use it.

Richard Bach

I recently had an insight that took my breath away…and not in a good way. One night, like I do periodically, I got ‘the bug’ to watch videos of ‘teachers’ I’d been hearing about, and am not yet not familiar with. The subkect matter is wide open for me. My loose definition of teacher is a spiritual teacher or thought leader in their professional field, or is in some way making a contribution to knowledge/consciousness.

What I discovered

I was looking through the bazillion videos on you tube and as I came across a title I liked, I began to notice that if the teacher was a woman, I would pass it up and choose instead to watch something from a ‘male’ teacher. Then all at once I saw it…a bias against women teachers. I had never been consciously aware of this before. I was shocked. I didn’t understand it. It didn’t make sense to me at the time, but I did decide to interrupt it then and there.

How I found myself responding

I needed to wake up from this. I intentionally watched only videos of women sharing their gifts and expertise. And I watched a lot of them. I bought an audio book narrated by a woman. I bought a ticket to go see a woman speaker locally, later that week. I wanted to immerse myself in this realization and get to the bottom of it.

Where did this bias come from? I see 2 possible origins for it:

  1. I never had any real relationships with nurturing, deep thinking male role models as a child. I can see that child in me still seeks that wise, nurturing male role model. This one I am more sure of.
  2. Over my professional career, I have had times of doubt about what I myself as a professional woman really had to offer the world. If I didn’t believe in my own value, then could I be filtering out the value of women in general? I’m not so sure about this one, but its possible.

How can I interrupt this bias and not have this filter limit my thinking and experience?

The first thing I’ll do is make this filter very conscious by having it trigger a new filter. For my brain, I find its much easier to train myself to do the exact opposite of a thing I am wanting to get loose from, so I will automatically flip this bias on its head and create a bias TOWARD women thought leaders. I’m making a commitment to myself to read or listen to a minimum of 3 women first, on any subject I get interested in over the next month.

The second thing I’ll do is discover 3 women thought leaders I appreciate in my local community, learn all I can about what they are doing, and then reach out and share my appreciation of them.

Lastly, I’ll put in my schedule 30 days from now to spend some time revisiting my thoughts and behavior around this.

I expect to see that I have created a new result, and some success in shifting this bias. I see that there is more than meets the eye with this one. I know I’ll get as much out of the experience as I put into it. I’m aware that bias, if you’ve got a brain, is a slippery slope. I also know that I already have fascinating new women favorites I’m learning from, so if nothing much more happens as a result of this insight, I’m already way ahead!

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