One question I've started asking is, “What are you willing to do?”
There are many battles to fight right now. Homelessness, food security, poverty, an authoritarian government, police brutality, unhappiness, and isolation are just a few. Many of us in the coming months are going to need to shift our careers, livelihoods, thinking, and focus in order to stay afloat. As difficult as this time is, there are absolutely ways to thrive. There are ways to fight against police and conservative terrorism. There are ways to uplift each other and create a better world for tomorrow.
But again, what are you willing to do?
Many people in the Left uphold concepts of love, freedom, and equality. There's a lot of passion and power in that, but up against a corporation, or conservative body which is purely driven by power, greed, and money – can your personal drive for love, freedom, and equality overcome that?
Our greatest asset is also our greatest weakness. As we strive for equality and respect, we feel there are fewer and fewer moral and ethical actions we can take to change the status quo. We also just want to live our lives happily. The Right has an amazing propaganda machine and are willing to do almost anything to gain more power, so where does that leave us?
In the battle for Black Lives Matter, we see protesters exposing the deep need for reforming police and law systems. But these protesters rely on lawyers and government officials to agree to those changes. City councilors, mayors, governors, police chiefs, judges, members of congress, and the president hold the final say. Yes the protests are important for educating and pressuring officials, but we also need people to take an even greater stance and become those changemakers.
This is an invitation to step up, to vote, to run for office, to start a business or corporation, to become a lawyer, to actually take the actions necessary to implement reform.
What are you willing to do?
As many of you step up as changemakers, it's important to understand some of the psychology behind convincing others to adopt your beliefs and actions. Three useful words to remember are COST, CARE, and CONVENIENCE. Does your initiative save a person money? Does it save them time or energy? Or do they already care about the principles of an initiative? Typically at least two of these must be met in order for a person to consider changing their beliefs or actions. Framing your arguments with the needs of your target in mind can make a huge difference. This is why, for instance, offering food at an educational event can increase attendance. The food provides convenience and saves a person money. On top of already caring about the cause, the person's needs are met.
Read the free activist guide, Surviving Climate Change and Other Disasters for more tips like these.
Have you been wanting to learn something? Form a new habit? To stay accountable to a task? You're invited to do just that alongside a community of others! This is totally free and you're encouraged to invite your friends and peers :)
How it works:
1) Pick an activity. It could be a drawing, running, programming, knitting, writing, doing activities for Black Lives Matter, calling city councilors, signing petitions, and so on.
2) Join the Rad Cat 30 Day Challenge Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/708936809890401/
3) Post a photo or video of you doing that activity or the product of that activity each day for the next thirty days (the first round is starting Sunday, June 14th and ending Monday, July 6th, 2020 but join in whenever).
When you join, feel free to introduce yourself, state what activity you've chosen, and why it's important to you. Also, it's great to say encouraging things to those sharing!
There are many ways to change the status quo. You can read a full synopsis of each of these tactics and general activist organizing tips by downloading the free half e-book, Surviving Climate Change And Other Disasters or buy a copy at my Etsy Shop. Be careful out there protesting!
Non-Violent Direct Action: Usually takes the form of disrupting an event, either by causing a ruckus through singing and shouting, or by blockading passageway to an event or something significant. Outright defiance of the dominant culture also works, such as when Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus in opposition to segregation laws.
Violent Direct Action: Using forceful or destructive means to create a statement or attempt to create change. These are primarily used by military forces and include setting property on fire, wars, assassination, riots, torture, and even computer hacking.
Hacking and Programming: With many people relying on robots for their survival now, those with knowledge of how to create and manipulate the world of electronic devices and data networks have very great powers to both destroy and create.
Indirect Action: Shows how meaningful a cause is to a person, such as with hunger strikes or signing a petition online. Typically these have very little influence on anything other than as a means of drawing attention to an activist cause and potentially gathering new allies.
Education: Educates a populace about a topic they were previously unaware of via fliers, presentations, art, conversations, videos, etc.
Idea Exposure: Introducing a diversity of beliefs, or secluding people from outside ideas is responsible for changing many minds throughout history. When ideologically different people live in close proximity or have access to each other through things like the internet, many are forced to question their beliefs. On the flip side, if a group of people secludes themselves from outside ideas, their beliefs can exist unchallenged.
Communication: Different situations may call for violent or nonviolent communication. Violent communication can work by shaming people into certain behaviors, although it is unlikely that they will like you or actually support what you believe. Nonviolent communication is a method of connecting with a person's basic human needs and is much better at creating mutual understanding than swearing or yelling at a person (read Nonviolent Communication by Marshall Rosenberg). You can also just casually talk to people about why a particular thing is problematic and give them alternatives.
Youth Education: Since activism can take a considerable amount of time to transform culture, and adults are often set in their ways, focusing on introducing new ideas to youth through entertainment, the internet, and public education can be the quickest way to change cultures at a mass scale.
Propaganda: Propaganda uses media to change minds about some subject, generally by appealing to a person's basic needs or emotions. Propaganda may stretch the truth or be completely fabricated from what the creator knows to be true, but the result nonetheless helps change minds. This can be done through fliers, news broadcasts, articles, posters, speeches, etc. The best propaganda speaks to a person's basic emotional and material needs, like happiness or money.
Laws: Creating or demolishing laws is a fairly effective way to create change, because following or not following that law is connected to a person's basic need for freedom – breaking the law will potentially end their freedom. It also makes everyone aware of the alternatively desired idea, even if they don't want to believe it. While effective, many laws are not well enforced. Some laws can also have the opposite of the desired effect. For instance, making “drugs” illegal in the USA has actually led to a greater incentive for drug dealers to convince people to take drugs because the monetary value is higher. You need to be careful with the repercussions of making rules.
Lawyers: Lawyers can help change laws or challenge the behaviors of people and businesses who are being unlawful. Some lawyers will assist activists for free, but others charge a considerable sum of money.
Self-Care and Passion: People who take care of themselves, especially within oppressive institutions, can be amazing beacons of light and sources of inspiration for those who are lost or do not entirely agree with an existing system. Just by setting an example through being fully passionate about a particular subject you help change those around you. You don't have to necessarily tell people that they're wrong, you can show them the amazing world that is possible if things were to change.
Fun and Entertainment: Activism doesn't have to be dull and stressful, it can involve making educational games for children, creating art, performing a theatrical act, singing a song, making people laugh, dressing up in costume, and generally uplifting the lives of others. Activists that incorporate these aspects into their causes are much less likely to burnout while drawing a greater number of members to their ranks. In fact, artists are often the first ones to introduce ideas to the masses and make movements exciting to participate in.
Creation: Activism may be accomplished by way of creating things, especially art, new products, and businesses to challenge existing products, service models, aesthetic values, work standards, and so forth. Many activists just focus on destroying existing institutions before ever having an alternative to fill in or replace what they're opposing, but showing people a better world that is possible makes convincing them of your ideals much easier.
Purchases: Enough people opting out of or into buying something can crash or bolster industries and services.
Philosophy: Many philosophers have thought a lot about the meaning to life (or the lack thereof) and through their written ideas and observations of existence come to conclusions that whole nations may decide to follow. However, there are many competing ideas that make any philosophy difficult to spread into a movement, so don't rely on this too heavily.
Scientific Research: People in recent times have some amount of trust in scientists, and so using the scientific method and the observable world to understand a concept, or discovering the benefits or drawbacks to a particular idea or material can have vast repercussions on everyday people. Scientific research becomes especially helpful when paired with lawyers, law, medical fields, and the engineering of new technologies.
Creating Small-Scale Examples: Even if your community or city is just a few thousand people, you can exemplify sustainable systems to show the world what is possible. Generally larger communities want data and examples before adopting change, so your local actions could start a mass movement. Consider this with voting systems, technologies, community gardens, vertical farms, prisons, and other reforms.
Building Communities: Ending your role in individualism can be very powerful. Change will not happen unless people unify together to demand it. Unionize, strike, host potlucks, live together with like-minded people. People are hugely divided in the world right now, but climate change is an excellent way to have a common enemy to fight together against.
Donations: Social and environmental change groups always need more money, more volunteers, more food, and more supplies.
On Monday at 11AM join Sage Liskey as Microcosm Publishing interviews him about his publishing career and newest book, You Are A Great And Powerful Wizard. Participants are invited to ask questions on the live video feed https://youtu.be/N2rJ-OfmuMA
The work explores how to uplift your life and change the world through the fun lens of magic and wizardry. Habit reformation, mental health, community building, activism, forming relationships, and healthy eating are just a few of the topics covered in this 288 page hardbound illustrated by Barbara Counsil.
Join the Facebook event at https://www.facebook.com/events/652459071998836/
See more photos or pick up a copy of You Are A Great And Powerful Wizard at www.etsy.com/listing/778691148/
Missed the show? Watch it anytime at https://youtu.be/N2rJ-OfmuMA
After 2 years of work here it is - 280 pages of practical tips on how to transform yourself and change the world through the fun lens of magic and wizardry. Mental health, friendship, activism, habits, community building, human psychology, and much more. Great for adults and teens. Illustrated by Barbara Counsil! Get a signed copy now on my etsy shop.
Each chapter ends with a Life Mapping section that gives you journal prompts for self-exploration.
Beyond being packed with useful information on becoming happier and more fulfilled, You Are A Great And Powerful Wizard details how to effectively create the world you want to see.
Here are chapters 5-7 of The Happiest Choice. These include information on a road map of coping with depression and anxiety, as well as activities, hobbies, foods, and nutrients.
If you want to support this work - my book sales are going to take a major hit this year with Coronavirus and I'm still not sure how I'll make up that income. You can purchase a physical copy on Amazon or directly from me on my Etsy page www.etsy.com/shop/radcatpress You can also sign up for my Patreon at www.patreon.com/sageliskey for various perks including access to my complete collection of books and zines. Alternatively, give a donation via Paypal to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you! Take care!
If you missed the first 4 chapters, here's the link: http://www.sageliskey.com/home/the-happiest-choice-chapters-1-4 I'll post more in the coming days!
5. The Road Map of Coping
The goal with this road map is to create long-standing contentment and stability, rather than short-term happiness. Note that this will take time and a certain amount of trial and error. As personal discoveries are made you will have the choice of altering your lifestyle and ways of thinking. It might be frightening and difficult at times, but will pay off in the end by a renewed sense of peace and purpose. A depressive episode can completely change your personality and perception of the world, and so when depression does strike, it is important to be prepared with as many tools as possible for finding your way back to a state of contentment. The contents of this chapter will reveal the primary tools you can use to apply coping mechanisms to your life. There are other tools throughout this guide, but the tools in this chapter build a foundation to work from.
5.1 - Desiring Change and a More Content Life
A basic starting point to coping with depression is acknowledging that you are experiencing depression and it is impacting your ability to enjoy life. Perhaps you already know this, but the connection is not always easy, especially with the myths and stigmas surrounding depression. It is also common to feel crummy but not acknowledge those feelings as signs of depression. In a lifetime, most everyone will experience depression. It is just a label that you can use to better understand yourself and how to reach a stronger sense of fulfillment. (click Read More to continue reading)
Pro-tips for socializing in isolation:
Hi everyone, today I am releasing a PDF of the first half of Surviving Climate Change And Other Disasters. This includes survival tips, being an effective change-maker and activist, ideas for how to push society forward in this difficult time, and much more.
Check it out and let me know what you think! If you want the full version, please grab a copy over on Amazon or get a signed copy directly from me at www.etsy.com/listing/567615954/
You can also grab the digital version at www.etsy.com/listing/773643172/
Hi! My name is Sage Liskey, the founder of the Rad Cat Press. I grew up seeing a lot of the disturbing, toxic, and unhealthy sides of American culture, and decided I wanted to do something to change it. Since 2010 I have been writing books and zines (booklets) focused around uplifting lives and reimagining society, with a primary focus in mental health and empowerment. I believe a better world is possible, so I hope you feel inspired and a little more fulfilled from what you find here. Read on about my mission.
Subscribe to my Patreon here for lots of great perks including the full book version of The Happiest Choice, discounts, member's-only content, access to my digital library, and much more!
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