Dear Mr. You -
You see the headlines. You listen to the radio. You are starting to think the president may be unhinged -- and you wish all of this bad news would just go away.
But it is not going to go away. Not any time soon.
In fact, it's probably going to get worse.
So you need to get in the game.
I know you are busy. You have kids and employees and traffic and life to deal with. I get it. But TOUGH SHIT! It's 2017 and the situation is FUBAR so you've got to get the hell off the bench. All hands on fucking deck!
You can do this. You're going to be surprised at how good you are at it. It will take less time than you think. AND it is going to make you feel like a badass.
All you've got to do is start. Here's how.
Step One: commit. Take 30 seconds and decide why this is important - to YOU. Think of the children! Your daughter doesn't need to inherit this shitstorm, does she? We've come too far in this country to give up now.
Step Two: charge your phone. You know what is super effective and takes almost no time at all? Calling your representatives. It's easy. (Player walkthrough, coming up.) But first -
Step Three: pick your gold star. Figure out what awesome reward you are going to give yourself for this new "calling my reps" habit. How about candy? Everybody likes candy. So: "After I make my calls, I'm going to walk over to the kitchen and get some chocolate." Boom. Done. (Feel free to replace "candy" with "nap" or "cocktail" or "oversized tattoo." Whatever floats your boat.)
Step Four: pick your daily trigger. Think about your daily routine, and pick an event that will be your trigger/reminder to pick up the phone. For example, maybe your kid comes to your office after school every day. Great! Let your kid be your reminder. "Uh oh, kiddo's here, it's time to make a couple of calls."
(This is extra powerful if your trigger is also your Why, your reason for getting involved in the first place. "There's my kid, who is going to inherit a total shitshow if I don't pick up this phone right now.")
So you take five minutes, you make your calls, and then you eat something sweet and you give me a high-five.
See what you've done there? You've set up a kickass loop for yourself. "When my kid walks in the door, I'm going to make a call, and then I'm going to eat some chocolate."
Kid > Call > Candy
It's going to feel good right away (because hello, candy) AND it's going to feel good long-term too (because you're doing something incredible).
And bonus points for modeling good behavior for your kid. Twenty years from now, she'll be making calls of her own.
So OK. Let's say you're on board with this plan. But you don't know where to start, or what to say. I've got you! Check this out:
"Turn your passive participation into active resistance. Facebook likes and Twitter retweets can’t create the change you want to see. Calling your Government on the phone can. Spend 5 minutes, make 5 calls. Calling is the most effective way to influence your representative." Fact!
Want to know more? Here's how it works:
Dammmmn. You just participated in DEMOCRACY, son!
If you're wondering, "Yeah but what are these scripts? Are they long?" Answer: Nope. They're short as hell.
Here's a script for a caller who wants to support the Affordable Care Act:
"Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [CITY, ZIP].
"I’m calling today because I am strongly in favor of the ACA and the protections it ensures for Americans. I expect [Senator/Rep's Name] to work to improve the ACA.
"Thank you for your hard work answering the phones."
See what I mean? Easier than ordering a Double Whopper at the drive-through at Burger King .
And here's what nobody tells you about activism: it is fun. It feels GREAT to take action.
Here's a story: when the House Republicans tried to gut the Office of Congressional Ethics a couple of weeks ago, I was PISSED. So I called my congressman's office. So did a whole bunch of other people. When the news came out, two days later, that the Republicans had backed down, it was the best feeling in the world. Citizens called and the reps listened. Hooray! The system still works!
And then go have a Kit Kat.
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