—Systemic change begins with personal change—

635: John Biewen, part 2: Turning off screens at 8pm


Do you keep your screens by your bed? Do you find yourself running in circles like: Twitter to email to latest news to Facebook to Instagram to Twitter and repeating the cycle forever? John shares his results committing to turning off his screens no matter what at 8pm a couple nights a week. Do you imagine it would affects his relationship with his wife, with whom he watched shows and movies? Would he get more anxious or less? Read more or sleep earlier? What do you think you would do? He shared what worked, what challenged things he needed to do for work, feelings of addiction. Toward the end he generalized to patriarchy, hierarchy, race, and leadership. Before recording we planned to keep the conversation short, but kept feeling engaged so kept it going. I think you'll find it engaging too.

624: John Biewen, part 1: Seeing Whiteness and Other Systems


I came across John from listening to one of his podcast's season, Seeing White, about the development of whiteness as a race. I listened to the whole series, which I found fascinating and provocative. Then I discovered another season, Men, covering another topic important to me. I invited him to be on the podcast, then I learned from him the most recent season, The Repair, is on the environment. We start this conversation talking about systems and approaching the topics above through a systems perspective. With such topics, with which everyone connects intimately, meaningful communication about them becomes personal. John shared his evolution beyond his expectations, challenging his identity even to himself. I comment how openly he shared about himself, which must have taken a lot of courage. From another perspective, I think his, I think he felt compelled to share. He shared how his ongoing research into race and these other systemic issues keeps revealing how baked in to American society inequities are. No one can escape them. He also talks about our widespread willful motivated denial. There are commonalities to my views on sustainability, so I bring them in. We could have filled hours and I feel we just got started, but he'll be back for more episodes. His experience with nature was touching.

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