Do you believe you can change the world?
It might sound scary, but you really don’t have to be a superhero to make a difference. Sometimes it’s the little things that we do in everyday life that send ripples of change around the globe.
Here are ten things YOU can do as part of your routine to promote veganism and animal rights:
1. Be informed.
There are so many good reasons to be vegan that it’s rather perplexing why the rest of the world is still hanging on to their non-vegan ways. Sharing correct, up-to-date information creatively is a great way to raise awareness. Calmly answer all those questions, debates, concerns and fears that non-vegans may raise about veganism.
2. Stay positive.
People are usually drawn to positive people and want to emulate them more.
If you are pretty well adjusted, chipper and altogether rather lovely, people will associate that to veganism. Cultivating a positive attitude is also very important for us as we have so much negative information about animal exploitation to process. If you need a lift, remind yourself that you have every reason to be happy.
3. Get active!
Sign petitions, go to demonstrations, email organisations (politely!), help out at your local animal shelter, adopt rescued animals, run a vegan group, donate to charity, do some fundraising, or raise awareness in any number of positive and effective ways.
Telling people about these issues and providing them with animal friendly alternatives is great way to get people on board the first carriage of the “vegan train”. Plus, you will feel great for actually contributing in any way. We can all make a difference, so get active today.
4. Share the vegan love!
Throw lovely dinner parties. Buy loved ones vegan gifts and yummy treats for special occasions – or any excuse to celebrate!
Many people are afraid that becoming vegan will mean a life of eating lentils and lettuce. It’s up to us to show them how great being veganism can be. If someone invites you for dinner, offer to make dessert and wow them with your awesome vegan puds! Introducing people to the vegan lifestyle is a great way to show people how they won’t “miss out” on anything by becoming vegan.
5. Be proud.
Try not to preach, but it’s important to be honest and open about your beliefs.
Find the balance between raising awareness and helping people to understand the truth without alienating yourself. It’s not easy, but you’re not alone. Share what works with other vegans. Be proud of who you are and stay true to yourself. Lead and inspire with love and compassion!
6. Emulate successful vegans.
Model other vegans who have been successful in creating change.
From vegan athletes and celebrities to political leaders and people you may know personally – if they get results, you can learn a great deal from the way they communicate and the actions they take. Learn from the hard work and dedication of others and use it to promote veganism and animal rights in your own way.
7. Use your consumer power!
The more the word “vegan” gets used and vegan products are asked for, the quicker people will start to provide them.
Politely and pleasantly ask for vegan products anywhere and everywhere you can (shops, cafes, restaurants, bakeries, shoe shops, etc.), especially in places you know don’t cater for vegans. Instead of asking in an apologetic or aggressive way, just ask in a positive, expectant way, and of course don’t forget to support vegan brands.
8. Ignore the trolls.
People who vehemently oppose our lifestyle and the reasons behind it will go out of their way to offend and upset us.
Trolls just love to hit out at the people who threaten their conditioned identity. This often comes from fear that their beliefs may be wrong, so they lash out to re-affirm themselves. Trying to reason with these people is unlikely to create change, as they are already coming from an antagonistic stance. They thrive on attention and upsetting others – so being ignored is the worst punishment you can give them. Learn to recognise a troll and spend your beautiful energy and precious time on worthier pursuits.
9. Did you hug a vegan today?
Make friends with other vegans who understand you and share your beliefs.
Being surrounded by others who can relate to your vegan frustrations, joys and successes is vital for your well-being. Find out about local groups, go to vegan fairs, and try vegan restaurants. Together, we are stronger, our voice is louder, and we will keep each other sane in what can sometimes feel like a crazy, harsh, uncaring, delusional world.
10. Look after yourself.
Take some time out to nourish your lovely vegan self!
Whether it’s getting rid of pent up stress and frustration in a kickboxing class, going for a run, watching an inspiring film, practising yoga, learning to meditate or losing yourself in a good book – just doing something you love on a regular basis will really make a huge difference to your quality of life and state of mind. This is a much more powerful “head space” from which we can raise awareness and inspire conscious change in others.
And the good news is – it works! Compassion is strength and together we are stronger than ever. Vegans are showing the world how kindness is the best way forward. In whichever way you choose to promote veganism and animal rights, even just for five minutes a day, you DO make a difference. So keep at it!