Do you feel overwhelmed by the copious amounts of information available to you every moment of the day? Or perhaps, you’re so put off by it that your feel numb to it all. Whether the info comes from newspapers, conversations with family, social media updates from friends, or mobile apps, today’s culture of content saturation is our greatest asset and greatest hindrance. Poet Prince Ea’s spoken word on social media says it’s “ironic how touch screens can make us...lose touch,” and “it’s no wonder in a world filled with iMacs, iPads, and iPhones, so many ‘I’s, so many selfies, there are not enough us’s and we’s.”
Whether you’re feeling overwhelmed or even numb, we all want to feel valued by and connected to others. For those reasons, we seek out mediums of expression (e.g., face-to-face conversations, posts on social media) with the hopes to be heard, acknowledged, and validated. In today’s world, it may be a “like” online or even a head nod from others, but both forms of expression fulfill a need—to feel care.
#ActivelyCaring challenges you to shift your focus from receiving care to actively expressing care for others. We can all care for others: family, friends, neighbors, strangers, the homeless, and the hopeless. But if you don’t translate that sense of caring into action, does it matter? Does it make a difference?
It was Martin Luther King Jr. who said, “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” Having a sense of caring is personal, innate, but internal. It is silent.
Translating that silent sense of caring into action is #ActivelyCaring.
Three forms of action, or resources, you can offer to translate caring into #ActivelyCaring are:
Time: Committing your time to something you care about is #ActivelyCaring.
Talent: Providing your skills and knowledge to something you care about is #ActivelyCaring.
Treasure: Giving any of your wealth to something you care about is #ActivelyCaring.
Tips for #ActivelyCaring
Start with yourself: Before you can actively care, you should spend time identifying what means the most to you. Tackling issues you care about most will will likely keep you motivated.
Set goals: Tackling a big societal problem can become daunting and defeating. Start with small achievable goals. If you care about veterans, perhaps start by volunteering. Reach out to your political representatives. Then build on your success!
Assess your impact: How often do you see a post on social media and think to yourself, “That’s not really going to make a difference.” Perhaps the individual has a clear goal: raise awareness.Understanding the goal of impact you want to make and your sphere of influence will allow you to more effectively actively care. Once you’ve actively cared, assess if you’re making an impact. If you are successful, continue the work you’re doing or strive for something greater. If you are not being successful, reassess your strategies, gain feedback from friends and those you want to serve, and keep trying!