Practices for Activists: How to Call Your Representatives even if You’re Terrified

phone

Talking on the phone isn’t easy for me: There is something inherently terrifying to me about speaking to a stranger you cannot see.  As a kid, my parents knew I wouldn’t answer the phone, I would refuse to be the one to order take out, and it took getting a job in a customer service call center in college to finally shake the fear out of me. (My phone skillz are actually quite on point because of this.)

Still, in a time when calling our representatives of the House and Senate is one of the most effective ways to get our voices heard (not writing letters, not sending emails, not angrily posting on their FB pages, for as satisfying as it may be), getting my mouth around the political jargon brings me right back to my 9 year-old self stuttering into the receiver.

Somehow the old story about not knowing enough about politics, and sounding like an idiot, and who am I to even be making this call, and will my voice make a difference at all…this all starts playing in my head as I pick up my phone.

Of course this is the journey!

Of course the hardest thing is the most effective thing!

Of course we will be pushed out of our comfort zones!

I make is a goal to call my Senators every day of the work week. Before this administration, I had never contacted any one of my representatives.

Every morning, I still get nervous.

I pray that I’ll get to just leave a message (most of the times, this is the case).

I trip over my words.

I turn bright red and thank the heavens the staffer on the other end of the call cannot see my face.

I do it anyway.

Here are a few things that make it easier:

Light a candle

This is big work you’re doing. A Ritual, even. To change your world. It deserves reverence.

Ask for the strength of your Ancestors

They faced their own trials and fears to bring you into this world. Now it’s your turn.

Have a script

Indivisible Guide is amazing for this. So is 5calls.org. I also follow Elizabeth Cronise McLaughlin, listen to podcasts like Pod Save America to keep up on what’s going on to stay fueled.

Remember, you’re just talking to a person.

They’re most likely an intern that wants to change the world just as badly as you do. And if you’re calling an unpopular representative, they’ve been answering calls like yours all day. So be nice and thank them.

We can no longer hide behind being uncomfortable to stay quiet. We need to have our voices heard, tallied, and counted. Politics ARE spiritual–they are a way we affect our communities, locally and globally. You are strong, you can do this.

I would love to hear from you about how you amp up your courage to ACT: Shoot me a line at raquel@raquelalexandra.com or on the FB Page.

Care to dive deeper into weaving political AND personal ritual? Check out Everyday Ritual: An Online Course in Crafting Sacred Ceremony beginning April 1. Learn more about the course here, or sign up for a taste with a free 5-day mini-course.

 


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