An Invitation to Begin

After the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election, I heard so much outrage, disappointment, discouragement, sadness and fear. From Facebook posts to discussions over the dinner table, my friends and family, and their friends and family, were all asking the same questions: “What can I do?” “ Where do I begin?” “How do I get involved?”

One or two said it was too late — that these questions should have been asked during or before the campaign. A few were satisfied with posting and reposting. Some took out their credit cards and pledged support to the fight. Many took to the streets to show they care, that they are paying attention.

Still, many asked “What can I do? Where do I begin?”

I had an idea that had been sitting in my brain for months, like an earworm that wouldn’t move on. Great things happen when people get involved. Great things happen when people decide that they aren’t going to stand by and let someone else fix the problem, rage against injustice, stretch out a hand. So why don’t ordinary people reach for greatness?

I asked people, “What keeps you from getting involved?”

One or two said “tried but failed.” A few said “my health.” Some said “time.”

Many said “I don’t know where to begin.”

I’m going to tell you a little secret. None of us know where to begin. You begin by beginning. You begin by learning one small thing about an issue that you care about. You begin by having one small conversation with someone that knows one little thing more than you do about the issue that you care about. You begin by dreaming BIG about the change you want to see and then dreaming SMALL about that one thing you can do to start to make it happen.

One more thing. If you are thinking of declining this invitation because, frankly, you don’t care about politics, or you don’t live in the U.S. or INSERT YOUR REASON HERE, this invitation is for anyone who has looked out their window — whether your view was of your street or of the entire world — and thought “someone should do something about that.”

Kirsten Bunch