Talking to Friends and Family

It is a well established fact that the people you are most likely to influence about anything are those who are closest to you. And the closer you are, the more influence you have.

That doesn’t mean it is easy! The older we get, the less we are likely to change our views, no matter what. But the time you put into trying to convince one family member or close friend to vote, or to vote differently, is going to be far more productive than using that time to try to convince a complete stranger.

And that’s because people are rarely influenced by facts or figures. People are not even influenced that much by appeals to the heart. What opens us up to a different point of view is the person holding that different point of view. If it is someone we trust, someone we like, someone we admire, or best of all, someone we love, we are going to be more open to listening to what they have to say, and more willing to take it in and make adjustments to whatever point of view we may have already held – even if we don’t at first appear to be, or even resist the attempt.

Not everybody is convincible, sometimes not even those we are closest to. That’s okay. If you are really getting nowhere with someone, move on to your next target. But don’t give up without trying, no matter how many other conversations may have failed in the past. Every conversation is an opportunity to practise what to say and how to respond to the many different reactions you may encounter. Each one is a learning opportunity.

And no one changes their point of view because of one single soundbite or meme. We need to be in this for the long haul. It requires dedication and persistence. It requires patience and a willingness to listen and to enter into discussion. It can’t be a simple one-way conversation that abruptly ends when it’s time to move onto the next person.

Our goal is to convince the people who are closest to us that our very survival is at stake in this election, and that means convincing them to vote like their life depends on it. But we are also trying to convince the people who are closest to us to help us with this campaign, by going out and trying to convince the people who are closest to them.

Here are some tools and resources that may help you. Feel free to use the LiveChat feature to get help and advice in real-time.