You Don’t Have to Be a Community Organizer

We all have gifts to give to the world. This is more important to remember now than it ever has been in my lifetime.

I’ve been reading a book called Becoming a Citizen Activist by Nick Licata because I’m trying to understand how change actually happens in American government today. It’s pretty opaque from the average citizen’s point of view. Today, no matter which side of the political spectrum you sit on or what you value or hold to be true, you need to understand how change happens so you don’t sit idly by and forget about caring for yourself, your neighbors, and future generations. This book gives a simple, actionable overview of how that happens.

The first sentence in the prologue is already my biggest takeaway:

“You don’t have to be a Marvel comic book superhero to change the world. You don’t even have to be a saint, a revolutionary, or a community organizer. You just have to be aware of your surroundings and of the opportunities to improve your life and those of others.”

It’s not about how many people you can galvanize (in your community or outside of it). It’s about how you direct your energy in a way that helps others while not burning yourself out. Maybe your contribution is through data entry for a local political action group. Maybe it is through listening to others’ stories without the need to persuade them of your viewpoint. Maybe it is through moderating a Facebook Group. Maybe it is through holding space.

Whatever it is, do it in the spirit of creating a better world for others, and you are already on your way to becoming an activist.

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