I spend a lot of my time feeling pretty helpless. I try everything in my power to change the world, including having this blog. Yet still some people I encounter just will not stop using products tested on animals or going to terrible animal attractions. I do not understand, I never will. This can at times make me feel really low, utterly helpless and like nothing I do matters. Then someone likes a link to a petition on my Facebook page or comments on my Instagram post saying they will try something new. Then I think it really does matter. What I do, what I write and the fight I am fighting does matter! I can save the world (ok we all know that’s probs a lie but I will be damned if I stop trying!!).
This got me thinking what if there are other people out there thinking the same. Wanting to make a change but not necessarily wanting to start a blog like me as a means to it. Well here is a list of things you can start doing today. The new year s coming too, so you could turn them into resolutions as well!
Use cruelty free products
I am sure it goes without saying on this blog, but if you have not already, go cruelty free in 2017. It does not have to be hard and you don’t have to throw all the old stuff out. Ease yourself into it! My tips for going cruelty free are here.
I sign about 5 petitions a day. Sometimes it feels pointless, but then 6 months later I get a new email in my inbox. The email will tell me how something has changed for the better. Or I read a news article, such as the poor polar bear in a shopping mall in China. Yeah the petition I signed may not have mattered, but it sure has got the story out there. Sometimes shame alone can end these things. Look at Shell choosing not to drill in the Artic due to pressure from Greenpeace, backed by a petition I signed. Although they claim it was other reasons!
Email Local MPs
Some petitions and indeed direct emails once you get into the world of trying to save animals will ask you to email local MPs. Do not be put off by this. The link will normally send you to a standard email you just fill in your details and it will send for you. This has a double effect, the first is you contact your local MP to air your concerns and ask them to help. The second is you get replies from the MP’s. You can either ignore them or read them. There is no pressure to do either. But I read them as it allows me to have more intelligent conversations with people and make it more relevant for them when I can explain exactly how their local MP is talking or what they believe in.
Speak to your friends
It can be very daunting to tell someone their view is wrong. Telling someone their products are tested on animals or the leather they are wearing is possibly from a dog skinned alive can sometimes feel like you are doing something wrong. It is not and it should not put you off. My family have all made real changes to what they do. There are still products I can’t steer them off but others are gone. The best example is my mother in law. She has terrible skin and so for years has had to use skincare from her doctors. Obviously all tested on animals. I spoke to her and she gave White Rabbit Skincare a try. Only last week she was round at mine saying her next order was in as she loves it.
This is absolutely not for everyone. Not sure it is for me. I am too soft hearted and bad with confrontation. Having said that it may be perfect for you! Some examples are the Earthlings Experience (try to find a group local to you) or the Save Movement Scotland. There are also various events with charities like the Humane Society International or the League Against Cruel Sports in attendance. Get yourself along to a vegan festival and there will be plenty of stalls, just speak to people to see how you can help.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
The world is one place where we all live, animals and humans alike. We are destroying it for both them and us and the decisions we make now will massively affect it’s future. So consider what you do. My new years resolution for 2017 includes moving towards zero waste. This will involve recycling everything, shopping for food without packets, not buying processed food, not wasting food, turning lights off and in general buying less.
I hope this has given you some ideas of what you can do to help. I would love to hear if you have any other suggestions of things to do too!