Pronouns4:28 with Michelle Zohlman
One of the simplest ways to be inclusive to your peers is to use pronouns.
One of the simplest ways to be inclusive to your peers is to use pronouns 0:00 intentionally. 0:04 Pronouns are how we refer to other people or talk about someone in the third person. 0:05 You're probably already familiar with some pronouns as most often we use he or she. 0:11 However, there are more pronouns than you realize. 0:16 You don't want to assume someone's pronouns either. 0:20 Although we're used to using he or him when referring to a male and she or 0:24 her when referring to a female, these associations are not always accurate. 0:29 Before we profuse some common pronouns you might come across, 0:34 you might also see pronouns referred to as preferred pronouns. 0:39 I encourage you to stray away from using that term. 0:43 By saying preferred, 0:46 it comes off as an option to use the pronouns that someone requests. 0:48 When someone shares or corrects you about their pronouns, 0:53 those are the ones you use. 0:57 This chart refers to four common pronouns someone might use. 0:59 We have she, her, hers, and he, him, his, which you're likely familiar with. 1:03 Then we have they, them, theirs. 1:11 This is a bit tricky for 1:15 some folks to adjust to using plural pronouns for singular nouns. 1:17 I promise it's okay. 1:21 The last ones are ze, zir, zirself or ze, hir, hirself. 1:23 Someone might use these last two pronouns when they feel like the more 1:30 gendered pronouns don't capture how they identify. 1:35 These tend to be considered more gender non conforming pronouns. 1:39 You can see we have example sentences such as, 1:44 they are speaking and the bag is theirs. 1:47 I encourage you to pause and try these out aloud. 1:50 Something to know about pronouns is that someone can identify with 1:54 more than one set. 1:59 If they share more than one, 2:00 that means that you can use any of those pronouns when referring to them. 2:02 There are way more than the four pronouns we covered that exist. 2:07 If someone shares pronouns that they use that aren't these four, 2:11 you should use them. 2:15 You don't need to feel pressured to memorize all the pronouns, 2:17 but I encourage you to explore more. 2:21 Also, you should always ask someone their pronouns or 2:24 use they them pronouns until you know their pronouns. 2:27 Since they them pronouns are gender neutral, 2:31 it doesn't assume how someone identifies. 2:34 It's always best to ask though. 2:37 If you wanna know someone's pronouns to avoid using the wrong one, 2:41 just simply say something like, hey, I'm Alex, my pronouns are they them. 2:46 If you feel comfortable, please share yours. 2:51 Or, I'm sorry, I forgot your pronouns, would you mind reminding me? 2:54 I use they them theirs pronouns. 3:00 I typically say, hey, I'm Michelle, my pronouns are she her. 3:04 If you feel comfortable, please share yours. 3:10 Or maybe you know someone's pronouns, but a friend or colleague is misusing them. 3:13 You can say, don't forget Maria uses ze, zir, zirs pronouns. 3:18 It's a great way to hold one another accountable. 3:26 Mistakes will happen, you're going to slip up on a pronoun. 3:28 I've used the wrong pronouns before. 3:32 When it does happen, I correct myself and move on. 3:34 You don't need to dwell on it. 3:39 What's important is fixing the mistake you made. 3:40 To use pronouns, you need to get in the habit of using them and 3:43 finding ways to implement them. 3:47 For example, putting them in your email signature, or 3:50 next to your name on a Zoom call. 3:54 Maybe when you meet someone new, 3:56 you make sure to include your pronouns in that introduction. 3:58 If your team or company hasn't implemented ways to know one another's pronouns, 4:01 team up with human resources to figure it out. 4:06 By implementing pronouns and making it a norm, you're able to advocate for 4:09 yourself and how you'd like to be represented, as well as your peers so 4:15 they know you understand not everyone identifies the same. 4:20 That will help them feel comfortable to show up authentically. 4:24
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