For any long term project, it’s important to have a plan. And keeping our country democratic – pursuing liberty, in other words – is definitely a long term project.
So, let’s make a plan.
- Decide what you’d like to focus on.
- Decide what tasks you’re most likely to stick with, over the months and years.
- Set yourself some reasonable goals.
- Write. It. Down.
What should you focus on?
Well, what are you passionate about? I personally care about a lot of things, but I’ve decided that I simply HAVE to focus on two things: civil rights, and getting out the vote.
You might decide to focus your activist efforts on a particular topic, like the environment, or women’s rights, or gay rights, or black lives matter. Or you could categorize things differently, and decide your focus is something like, “anything unconstitional”, or “whatever [group x] is working on”.
So, what’s important to you?
What tasks can you stick with?
There are tons of different ways to be an activist. Pick the one (or two or three) that suit you best, and that you feel like you can stick to:
- Marching in protests, picketing
- Calling congressional representatives (or others)
- Writing letters to representatives
- Writing letters to newspapers
- Writing blogs
- Volunteering for an action group, or a political party, and/or an election committee
- Read and study – history, politics, activism, law
And feel free to switch things up as time goes on! It’s okay to trade calling senators for writing letters, or marching for volunteering with the local election committees.
What are your goals?
I have friends that have set themselves a goal of 5 letters a week, for the next year. Others want to make 2 calls a day. Some have joined groups, some have volunteered with their local Dem or Independent party.
Don’t go nuts. Remember that this really is the long haul. If you set yourself a goal of two letters a week, for example, and you find it easy…you can always ratchet it up!
Write it down.
This is important. Write it down, post it on your wall. Tell people your goal.
Remind yourself what you’re focusing on, and how you’re going to do it.