Editor’s note: this is a guest post by Lynn Fang of Upcycled Love.
We are so inundated with negative information these days that most people just want to numb themselves to the pain. They don’t want to talk about the real issues (they’d much rather keep listening to the new Katy Perry single).
Political corruption, crime, social injustice, and environmental disasters are everywhere. They receive so much attention on mainstream media channels these days that it’s no wonder we shut ourselves off emotionally to their reality.
But, beneath the surface, we still feel the pain of injustice every day, in every corner of the world.
We still want to talk about the big issues, so how do we write about these important issues without turning people off?
The truth is that most of us are aware of the issues. We’re aware there’s pollution and corruption and terrible things going on in the world, but we just don’t want to be constantly reminded that there’s awful stuff going on–mostly because it’s incredibly depressing.
We want to find joy, excitement, and meaning in life. We want to have the desire to live and love life.
But we still need to talk about the tough issues of today. So, with that in mind, let’s consider some of the ways we can inspire people to change the world without becoming too negative.
1. Clarify Your Intention
I once hosted a guest post on climate change on my blog. Even though I feared that some readers might feel preached to, or maybe even feel “threatened” by this guest blogger’s post, I published it anyway. It ended up being a very controversial post. One reader said that she felt as though the author wanted her to make even more sacrifices–even though she had already been living a very mindful, green life.
I soon realized that my intention for publishing the piece didn’t come from a pure, compassionate space. It was muddled up in not wanting to offend my guest author. But, if I had pointed out my concerns to my guest blogger beforehand, perhaps the controversy would have been avoided. Perhaps readers would have felt more hopeful, rather than betrayed. By feeling hopeful, maybe my readers would have been driven to do more to address climate change. Instead, the opposite happened.
This is why the most important thing you can do is to become very clear about your intention for writing about a topic, whatever it may be: human rights, global warming, pollution, etc.
Is your intention to tell stories about the people involved, and their human experience with the world? Is your intention to raise awareness about an issue? Is it to inspire action, or creativity?
Understand what emotions your reader may be going through as they read your post, and take care of them as you express your thoughts. When a reader feels threatened–as though they are responsible in some way–that’s a huge turn-off.
Hold the highest intention, then. Hold on to the intention to care for your readers, and avoid making them feel responsible or unworthy for not doing what you are asking them to do. Hold on to the intention to raise awareness, offer a solution, and inspire creativity, hope, and action.
Ultimately, the point is to drive action and create new solutions. It’s not to stay worried about the state of the world, or place blame on anyone.
2. Inspire Creativity
While you uncover the alarming truths about your issue, remember to look for the solutions. There are so many people out there today engaging in projects offering viable solutions to today’s problems.
For example: an American architect was living in Thailand when she witnessed the sale of a little girl to a man for sex. She tried to stop the sale, and was held at gunpoint. This woman wasn’t able to save this little girl, but the woman kept dreaming of ways to liberate these poor innocent women from their fates. The woman pinpointed the issue as one of economics, and so she developed a concept that would work with the emerging green market. She employed poor village women in Thailand to weave beautiful fabrics from organic and sustainable sources, and partnered with a conscious designer to introduce new, fashionable, and marketable designs for these fabrics.
This woman’s name is Eve Blossom and her company is called Lulan Artisans. Eve’s company strives for 100% sustainability by using bamboo as shade, using natural, non-toxic dyes, using trashed bike wheels for loom wheels, and using local farm waste as a textile resource. They also expanded their employee care policy by offering education, housing, and child care for village weavers.
Lulan Artisans employs poor villagers in Thailand who would otherwise be forced to enter the sex trade. This is a model based on local sustainability–and with enough local support, this type of company can be replicated just about anywhere.
Lulan Artisans is an incredible success story that has been an inspiration for hundreds and thousands of people around the world.
It opens your mind a little: if a woman like Eve could have the ability to make this happen, then maybe, just maybe, you could do it too.
It also stirs your creativity: if Lulan Artisans can employ all these innovative design features, then maybe you could do that too in your own projects.
By simply sharing this inspirational story with you, you probably feel renewed hope for the world, and maybe even renewed faith in your own journey. You’re most likely not upset with me because I didn’t admonish you, or tell you what to do.
3. Strive to Empower
By inspiring creativity, you empower your readers. It sends a message: “Look what regular people can do! You can do it too!”
Here’s an example of how you can empower people to change the world without totally bumming them out:
The Climate CoLab is harnessing the power of global intelligence to develop effective climate change policy. If you have an idea about how to solve the issue of climate change through policy, submit your proposal to them and it will be judged and reviewed by a panel of experts. The experts then select a group of proposals for the final round, where they are judged and reviewed by the Climate CoLab community. Winners have the opportunity to brief policy makers with their proposal.
Not only is Climate CoLab offering people across the globe the opportunity to develop and voice their proposed solution, it is also offering the public a new avenue to influence public policy.
While this is a project that is not a book or blog, it is an example of how you can give power back to the people.
As a world-changing writer, you have a pivotal role in shaping the collective mindset. Will your words empower? Or will they disempower?
Inspire People To Change The World Without Totally Bumming Them Out
The next time you want to rant about the state of the world, consider transforming the rant into a piece that inspires creativity, and empowers people to go out into the world and develop their own solutions.
Lynn Fang is a writer, thinker, and Conscious Business Coach. She is the author of Living the Transformation and blogs about personal growth, green living, and social change at Upcycled Love. Follow her on Twitter and Google+
To follow the Courage 2 Create and find out what happens to Ollin and his novel, you can subscribe by inserting your e-mail into the subscription box in the top right corner of the sidebar! Subscription is completely free! Thank you for subscribing!