From the Book: “Hold someone’s hand”

I selected the phrases for my coloring book to say what I thought might be most important to others within the activist community.  But because the coloring book simply has the coloring pages without commentary, I thought I might use this venue to elaborate a bit on why I chose to include what I did.

“Hold someone’s hand.”

We hold hands for connection, for comfort, to show affection, to demonstrate a bond.  It’s a powerful gesture, and the reasons we hold hands are all the things we should be building more of in our work to better the world.

Whether we’re the ones seeking comfort or connection or the ones offering it, the hand holding is important.

From the Book: “An ally is better than a hero”

I selected the phrases for my coloring book to say what I thought might be most important to others within the activist community.  But because the coloring book simply has the coloring pages without commentary, I thought I might use this venue to elaborate a bit on why I chose to include what I did.

“An ally is better than a hero.”

 

Few, if any, problems are truly solved by someone swooping in to save the day.  Once the knight in shining armor has gone on his way, those he saved are no safer than they ever were.

What people really need are people to stand beside them, to fight beside them, to work beside them.

The world doesn’t need heroes as much as it needs allies.

From the Book: “I will demonstrate love”

I selected the phrases for my coloring book to say what I thought might be most important to others within the activist community.  But because the coloring book simply has the coloring pages without commentary, I thought I might use this venue to elaborate a bit on why I chose to include what I did.

“I will demonstrate love.”

Love builds bridges.  Love brings people together.  Love lifts people up.  So if you want to make the world a better place, practice love.  Show others what you believe love to be.

Too often we demand love, seek love, instead of showing others what we mean by love and giving it to those around us.  If you want the world to be a more loving place, you have to start demonstrating what that means to you.

From the Book: “I will choose my silence wisely”

I selected the phrases for my coloring book to say what I thought might be most important to others within the activist community.  But because the coloring book simply has the coloring pages without commentary, I thought I might use this venue to elaborate a bit on why I chose to include what I did.

“I will choose my silence wisely.”

Silence is necessary and powerful.  It allows us to focus and listen.  It is necessary for rest and calm.  It promotes thought and meditation.

It also says a lot of things.  It can say to others that we condone their behavior.  It can discourage those looking for support or encouragement.  It can communicate disapproval to those expecting our applause.

It’s very important to carefully and purposefully choose when to be silent.

From the Book: “I have power of my own”

I selected the phrases for my coloring book to say what I thought might be most important to others within the activist community.  But because the coloring book simply has the coloring pages without commentary, I thought I might use this venue to elaborate a bit on why I chose to include what I did.

“I have power of my own.”

Nobody is powerless.  We all have our own power, but we have to choose to use it.

We have the power of our words:  what we say, when we choose to speak, and when we choose to be silent.

We have the power of our actions:  what we give priority to in our lives, what gets our attention, where we spend our money and time.

We have the power of our relationships:  who we know, who we choose to associate with, who we learn from, and who we teach.

Even if we don’t feel like we have the power to change the world, we all have the power to change things in our own world.  We all have power of our own.

From the Book: “Strength is built, not found”

I selected the phrases for my coloring book to say what I thought might be most important to others within the activist community.  But because the coloring book simply has the coloring pages without commentary, I thought I might use this venue to elaborate a bit on why I chose to include what I did.

“Strength is built, not found.”

Anyone who has been at all serious about lifting weights can tell you that, while you can absolutely dig deep and find the strength for that last push to get through a set, actual gains require work.  Becoming stronger requires work.  Increasing your capacity to lift requires work.

It’s the same with the strength to do difficult things when it comes to activism.  Or the strength to keep going when you’re tired.  Or the strength to fight the same fight over and over and over when you’re discouraged.  That strength isn’t something you simply dig in and find.  You have to build it.

 

From the Book: “I will tear down walls”

I selected the phrases for my coloring book to say what I thought might be most important to others within the activist community.  But because the coloring book simply has the coloring pages without commentary, I thought I might use this venue to elaborate a bit on why I chose to include what I did.

“I will tear down walls.”

So much of what prompts activism results from conflict and division.  Activism doesn’t cause division, it points it out and shines a bright light on it.  It calls attention to the walls which have been built between us and the damage those walls do to the fabric of society.

So instead of vilifying those on the other side of the wall, instead of trying to force them to climb over and stand with us on our side, focus most on tearing down the walls themselves.  Go after the forces which put the bricks in place, chip away at the ideas which hold the pieces of the wall together, break through where you can and help people cross through.