Try for freeTry for free
MeditationNon-striving with Kessonga

Non-striving with Kessonga

Being a great ally is more about being present on the journey than reaching a destination. Kessonga explains how to build resiliency through non-striving allyship, so you can continue this important work. Search “allyship” to find other meditations in this series.

Try 14 days free

Better mental health starts with Headspace. Unrivaled expertise to make life feel a little easier, using guided meditations, mindfulness tips, focus tools, sleep support, and dedicated programs.

Try 14 days free
Better mental health starts with Headspace

Hi, my name is Kessonga and welcome to this Headspace mindful allyship practice. A few words before we drop into this practice. Racial allyship is a heavy subject that can immediately conjure up strong emotions, and that's perfectly okay. Mindfulness is not always about feeling and being comfortable, happy, and tranquil. Mindfulness is paying attention on purpose to the present moment without judgment. So it's literally whatever is present in this moment right here and right now. If that's feelings of discomfort, fear, or anxiety, again, that's perfectly okay. Mindfulness teaches us how to be with those difficult and strong emotions that we will all inevitably experience in our lives. So with that being said, what I'm going to ask you to do right now is take a gentle, deep breath. In through the nose and out through the mouth. And with that exhalation, just noticing how you are feeling right now in this moment. Noticing how you are feeling physically, any sensations that are present. Noticing any emotions that are present. And also noticing the thoughts flowing through your mind right now. And just simply noticing without any judgment. I believe this practice of mindfully paying attention to ourselves without judgment at the very beginning of a journey is a valuable practice to get in the habit of doing. We will periodically do this check-in with ourselves throughout the practice. So it's no secret that racism exists in this world, and it falls on a sort of spectrum from the subtle microaggressions, like a store owner following a black customer around their store, to the very blatant acts of racism. As existed, for instance, during the times of segregation in the United States. Not to mention the racism that exists towards the Native American and indigenous people, the Asian and Latinx community, and other people of color. No matter where on the spectrum it falls, any type of racism is violent and extremely stressful. In addition, it's also paradoxical. So what do I mean by this? Well, even though everyone knows about its existence, it's oftentimes not explicitly and blatantly mentioned or talked about. And when it is, it can often feel like walking on eggshells. Am I saying the right thing? Am I offending anyone? And so taking a breath here and gently checking in with your physical, emotional, and mental self. No judgment, just simply noticing. And perhaps taking a deep breath in through the nose and out through the mouth. And so once in a space of accepting racism as a reality, the question may be what is and how do I begin to act in allyship? Remembering that a racial ally is someone who actively supports others who are experiencing racial injustice, prejudice, and discrimination. The key words in this definition being actively supports, which means there is some intention and deliberateness that's present. It's very easy for a person to stay in their comfort zone of privilege, whether it's white privilege, heterosexual, cisgender, or...


Duration12 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

    More about Andy
  • Eve is a mindfulness teacher, overseeing Headspace’s meditation curriculum. She is passionate about sharing meditation to help others feel less stressed and experience more compassion in their lives.

    More about Eve
  • As a meditation teacher, Dora encourages others to live, breathe, and be with the fullness of their experiences. She loves meditation’s power to create community and bring clarity to people’s minds.

    More about Dora
  • Kessonga has been an acupuncturists, therapist, and meditation teacher, working to bring mindfulness to the diverse populations of the world.

    More about Kessonga
  • Rosie Acosta has studied yoga and mindfulness for more than 20 years and taught for over a decade. Rosie’s mission is to help others overcome adversity and experience radical love.

    More about Rosie
Your lifelong guide to better mental health

Your lifelong guide to better mental health

Stress, sleep, and all the challenging emotions — care for your mind with the everyday mental health app that's shown to make a difference.

Try 14 days free
Look After Your Mind

Look after your mind

Proven guided meditations and programs to help you stress less, sleep more soundly, and better navigate life’s challenges

Science Backed


Studies show that using Headspace for 30 days can reduce stress, increase resilience, and improve overall well-being

Explore Content

Explore 1000+ 
expert-led exercises

Access our library of meditations, breathing exercises, and guidance videos for stress, sleep, focus, everyday anxiety , parenting, and more.

Member reviews

Hear from some of our members

Your app brings so much peace and tolerance to our home.




Changing my thoughts has allowed me to change my life.




The stress and loneliness courses … taught me how to comfort myself.




Headspace provides me with … a connection to myself, and a disconnection from negative thoughts, feelings, and sensations.




More to explore

Beginning Meditation


Reframe Stress and Relax


New and Popular


Becoming a Mindful Parent

    • Terms & conditions
    • Privacy policy
    • Consumer Health Data
    • Your privacy choices
      Privacy Choices Icon
    • CA Privacy Notice
  • © 2024 Headspace Inc.
  • Terms & conditions
  • Privacy policy
  • Consumer Health Data
  • Your privacy choices
    Privacy Choices Icon
  • CA Privacy Notice