Working Together Against Cause Shaming
Most of us have certain things that we care so deeply about that we’re willing to take extraordinary measures to defend or advance that cause or belief. The problem is that not everyone shares those beliefs and, what’s more, even people who agree about a cause can’t necessarily agree on what to do about it. Humans tend to judge decisions from their own perspective, so this kind of disagreement can be especially frustrating. It’s what Tamsen likes to call cause shaming.
The important thing to remember is that at the heart of every person lies a Red Thread, but how we fill in the blank of that universal template for meaning is going to be completely unique. The good news is that if we look more deeply into someone’s Red Thread, we can figure out what it is that drives them. We can see that even though we both have the same Goal and even the same Problem, we have different Changes in order to avoid cause shaming and get things done.
When we are trying to achieve the same Goal, when we have the same fundamental beliefs, it’s necessary that we find ways to weave all of our different Red Threads together to avoid cause shaming and solve the overall Goal that we all have.
Have you ever been the victim of cause shaming? That’s what I call the feeling when somebody seems to attack you for not responding to a cause the same way they do. Is there an antidote for that? I think there is. I’m Tamsen Webster of TamsenWebster.com and that’s what we’re talking about this week on Find the Red Thread.
I believe most of us have certain things that we care so deeply about, that we are willing to take rather extraordinary measures to defend or advance that belief or that cause. Everything from “Adopt Don’t Shop” for pets, to something political. That, in and of itself, is not a problem. The problem is when we run into people who don’t behave exactly the same way we do.
Now, I can understand why you run into someone who has a different opinion or even an opposing opinion, and that creates frustration. But I think most of us are really baffled by when we don’t agree with other people who have the same opinion we do, who hold the same cause or hold the same belief in the same esteem. But still, I’m sure there have been times when you have looked at somebody else and said, “I don’t understand why you aren’t willing to do this thing for this cause that I am.” I know I’ve been in that position.
So where does that come from? Well it comes from a very human tendency to judge other people by our own standard. “Well I’m doing this thing, so why aren’t you doing it too?” But here we need to remember, that at the heart of every person, every person, lies a Red Thread. And while that Red Thread, the existence of it is universal, and while even the components of it are universal because they are how we make things make sense; how we make sense of the world, how we fill in those blanks of the Red Thread is completely unique.
So there’s both good news and bad news in this. The good news of course, is that everyone has a Red Thread, which means if we go and look for each other’s Red Threads, we can start to figure out what it is that drives them. So even though you and I may have the same Goal, and we even see the same fundamental problem, based on our own ideas we may take different approaches, we make different changes in order to satisfy that Goal.
You may be somebody who loves to be right out on the front lines, speaking to other people, talking to other people, gathering people together, having those meetings, making those strong statements. And we need people like that. We also need people on the other side of those thoughts, doing some of the strategy, making sure that the mechanics of things are working. We may need people who are doing other things that reflect necessary components and the whole fabric of making sure that a cause that you believe in succeeds.
But this is exactly the role that a Red Thread plays. When we are trying to achieve the same Goal, when we have some of the same fundamental beliefs about why it’s so important that we treat other people a certain way, or that we respond to animals, or that we respond to the environment in a certain way; then it’s necessary that we find ways to weave all of those Red Threads together. So I know that the reaction sometimes is to say, “I don’t understand why you.” But with the Red Thread, you have the tool to be able to go and start to figure out exactly why someone does that. And more importantly, to recognize the value that their different approach has in serving the overall Goal that you both have.
Finding the Red Thread is so important for you, but it’s important for all of us, particularly when we’re trying to come together to figure out how it is that we can solve the big problems that are here in the world. If you need help figuring out your Red Thread, go to FindYourRedThread.com and download the Red Thread Worksheet. Figure it out— it’s important. Not because I want you to, but because it helps you understand how you see the world. And the more that we understand that, the more we can understand the world itself. That’s this week’s episode of Find the Red Thread, and I’m Tamsen Webster of TamsenWebster.com