December 2022 Newsletter

In This Issue:

From the Director


That’s the word I have heard from three good friends recently who are all leaders in their fields…all prominent women doing good, hard, needed work and all at the top of their game.   They are tired.

Not only are they tried, but one of these women said to me, “I am worried about my staff, each person is working very hard with burn-out nipping at their heels.”

Fatigue, burn-out, depletion.  Ask leaders, activists, directors of nonprofit organizations, and organizers how they are doing and you may well hear some form of feeling spent.

Blame it on the pandemic, blame it on the effort devoted to the midterm elections, blame it on Trump, blame it on one-disaster-after-the-next news cycles, blame it on the grinding nature of poverty, racism, and oppression in all its forms…

Whatever the reason, leaders, activists and organizers are weary.   And we need to name it and pay attention to it.

We need to increase our self-care.  Remember: self-care is not self-indulgent.   Self-care is your lifeline to being more effective in everything you do.

Activists are good at doing—we are programmed to be active, to show up, to make plans, to lead the way, and to keep on keeping on.   But we are human beings, not human doings, and doing less and resting more has huge rewards for our mental and physical health and actually for our work overall.

As New Year’s Day approaches and you are tempted to make New Year’s Resolutions, consider NOT adding another thing to your day/plans/schedule.   Give yourself permission to not commit to more visits to the gym or losing ten pounds.   Think about committing to doing less, to being lazy (which researchers tell us is good for our brain and heart), to sitting around, to being unproductive, to day dreaming and napping.   Consider finding ways to deepen your breathing and slow down your heart rate.   Unclench your fist and exhale.

I am a pastor and clergy have a saying that “ministers always preach the sermon they need to hear.”   So I am talking to you, Andrea Ayvazian.   Quit being so busy and tired.  And I am talking to you, dear Truth School extended family.   Quit being so energetic, hard-working, and industrious.

Being a mile wide and an inch deep means everything is being short-changed and fatigue is usually the by-product.

Here’s to a New Year where we let go, just a bit.  Still passionate, still engaged, and still active, but with a light in our eyes and a spring in our steps because we are continuously refilling that well inside with things that nourish us.

Here’s to a New Year that has less anguish and more joy, fewer late nights and more rest, diminished stress and more inner calm.

We are in this for the long haul.  So take good good good good care of yourselves.

With loving support,


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The truth is powerful and it prevails. - Sojourner Truth



For complete information on all of our class offerings, and to register for a class, visit Truth School or click on the links for specific classes below. This Fall the Truth School will offer many classes on Zoom, as well as several in-person classes. Please note class locations when you register. All class times are Eastern Standard Time.

If you register for a class but can’t make it, please let us know at Accurate information about class size is important for trainers to know for preparation and planning purposes.
Thank you for this courtesy.


Creating Exciting Consciousness-Raising Events for social change with Netfa Freeman December I @ 5:00-6:30pm EST FREE! Register at

Branding Critical Race Theory with Tom Chang December 3, 2022 @ 1:00 pm - 3:30 pm EST Online Event FREE! Register at

Ladder 2 Leadership with Nikai Fondon December 6, 2022 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm EST Online Event FREE! Register at

From Here to Equality: Exploring the Case for Reparations With Jade Barker December 8, 2022 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm EST Online Event FREE! Register at

Music of the Civil Rights Movement 1940s - 1960s With Dr. Kathy Bullock December 15, 2022 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm EST Online Event FREE! Register at

Circle Practice to Mark the Winter Solstice With Strong Oak Lefebvre December 21, 2022 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm EST Online Event FREE! Register at

Giving Tuesday Please consider giving to the Truth School Click on this to support the Truth School or go to:

What Participants are Saying

"Dynamic! A thorough enlightenment of true history that we all should have in schools." Participant Black Woman Suffragists - Singing Our Story "The ideas were far ranging and highly applicable." Participant Equitable Hiring Practices "She is astonishing in her ability to understand and articulate the honest and life-giving complexities of the issues she tackles, moving us out of confusion. Not an easy task. Done with extraordinary grace, and deep wisdom of life, humans, and the hard, ongoing issues we all face and live within. The hope that emerges from her wise sanity is made of strong fibers, and strenghens us if we let it. I am profoundly grateful." Participant Calling in the Call Out Culture

I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept. - Angela Davis

And Still We Rise
Women of Color Leadership Forum
Starting in January!

And Still We Rise 6-Month Leadership Forum for Women of Color Prepare to be inspired, renewed, fortified, and transformed! Third Saturday of each month - January to June 2023 10 am to 1 pm Starting January 21, 2023 register at

"There is divine beauty in learning... To learn means to accept the postulate that life did not begin at my birth. Others have been here before me, and I walk in their footsteps. The books I have read were composed by generations of fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, teachers and disciples. I am the sum total of their experiences, their quests. And so are you." - Elie Wiesel

Thank You For Your Generous Support Beveridge Family Fund Bud Ackerman fund Hornor Skinn Charitable Fund Markam Nathan Fund Samuel Rubin Foundation TJX Foundation Women's Fund of Western MA Anonymous Family Foundation

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel" - Maya Angelou

Daily Hampshire Gazette

Several years ago, when I was the senior pastor of a hilltown church, I invited a local harpist to play Christmas Carols during our big Christmas Eve service. The harpist did a wonderful job, the harp music added so much to the festive service, and the congregation loved it.

The next year, when a group of church leaders gathered to plan the Christmas Eve service, someone mentioned possibly having harp music again. I was surprised when, after the idea of having harp music was suggested, a group member said, “We must have harp music, we always do that.” We had done it once.

The Truth School wishes you a Happy New Year 2023

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