Once you start living a vegan lifestyle and you learn about all the stuff that animals have to go through, a natural step for many vegans is to become an activist.
Now, I know that the word activist sounds very strong and it may scare you off a bit, I understand completely, but it just means that you spread the word about veganism and the compassionate way of living through something that you do.
Activism comes in many shapes and sizes:
- You can be an author of books about veganism and animal rights like Colleen Patrick-Goudreau.
- You can become a speaker and spread the message while speaking on stages in front of people like James Aspey.
- You can blog about how to help the animals and what the truths behind dairy, meat, eggs and many other industries are like Gemma Davis.
- You can start making YouTube videos and reach people through platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo and Instagram like Mike the Vegan does.
- You can protest like Earthling Ed.
There are literally a million ways one can be an activist for the animal rights movement.
And that’s the fun part! That’s what makes activism so joyful for those who are just beginning.
Because we are all so different and some are more extroverted than others, we can each find a form of activism that works for us and makes us feel the best.
The best part of being an activist is that you get to use all of your talents and abilities for good. There is no need to do something that makes you feel uncomfortable or uneasy. You get to choose what you want to do!
- What do you love to do? How can you marry your passion with activism for animal rights?
- What talents do you have that you could use for good? Can you make amazing short documentaries? How about writing jaw-dropping articles for magazines? Can you create amazing online programs? Are you a great speaker? What are you super good at? What can you do with your talents?
- Do you want to speak up for certain issues regarding animals? Perhaps you want to speak up for all causes, and that is absolutely great, but do you have an area that you feel you would be best at? Perhaps you could first focus on spreading the word about eating vegan? Or how animals at the ZOO suffer? How about animals in movies and the abuse they endure? You do not need to choose, but sometimes it helps.
Once you find your voice as an activist, you can dedicate as much time as you wish to it. Some earn a living by being an animal rights activist, others just do it occasionally. Both are great and appreciated.
Now, let me give you a few tips on how to be a better activist:
- Be kind to people. Passionate but kind.
- Let your WHY be your guide. Let it remind you of why you are doing what you do. When things get rough, you will be guided back to the truth, simply by knowing the reasons why you started in the first place.
- Do not sugar-coat the truth but also do not be too graphic and rude. Do not be rude at all, actually. But, hey, we all lose our shit with people sometimes. It does not make you a bad person.
- Be an example of the person you are promising them they can be if they decide to become vegan. Walk the walk, love. Be healthy. Be joyful. Be happy. Be calm. But again, do not be afraid of raising your voice and being passionate when there is a need for it.
- Have the basic knowledge about nutrition and what happens to the animals in different industries. You don’t need to remember the whole book, but be able to form two informative sentences together so that you can teach people something.
- Listen to them and then respond in a calm voice. No one – and I mean, no one – will go vegan if you scream at them and accuse them of supporting murder. Wait, that’s how I went vegan, but still, it works only on people like me, and I had low self-esteem when I went vegan and I already thought I was a bad person, so just be nice, OK? Everybody just wants to be somebody or something like that. Treat them like a SOMEBODY, because they are.
I started to blog about veganism as soon as I went vegan, and even though I had no idea what I was doing, I wrote three short eBooks on the topic of veganism and eco-living.
I am super introverted and uninterested in talking to most people, so any contact with too many humans and I go into my acting mode. I start pretending that I am some sort of a Russian spy and I start acting cold.
I scare people away and they often think I am super rude and entitled. It’s a defence mechanism. That’s why writing is great for me. I get to write alone, away from humans. I get super fake in large groups of people because it’s not my natural habitat, so I act my way out of it. It is a great practice if you want to be an actor, to be honest.
Your homework is to find silence in your day to day life and dedicate a few days to just thinking about what you can do with your talents. Just think and feel your way to the answer. And when you find that answer, go for it. Do something.
Do not feel bound to dedicate your life work to animals or think that you need to switch careers, just choose a small form of activism that you can practice often that will benefit the animals and our planet.
Many times when we start using our voice for other animals, we also use it for other people. The beauty of veganism is that once we learn about the cruelty towards non-human animals, we also start being more conscious of how other people are suffering.
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