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Stigma is alive and an ill-presence in all communities.

It most often refers to a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society or group of people have about something. It thrives alone with one individual and seeds prolifically within the group. And within the subgroup. And in the subgroup’s subsubgroup… on and on. It grows best in a fixed mindset, on moral superiority, misunderstanding, assumption, fear and comparison.

Other places where stigma is deeply rooted is in segregational systems and division of sex, race, class, religion, ability, disability, and profession. And of course stigma can be rooted in the self. Organic lasting methods of eradication include practicing wholehearted conversations about all of the things- the wholly comfortable and uncomfortable and a willingness to get curious and learn more. Of utmost importance in reducing stimagic behavior is that we acknowledge that we are all the same.

Stigma is not enigmatic; it is not difficult to understand.

When was the last time you checked in with any lurking moral superiority you may have towards someone or something different? What about in your workplace?