By Sadie Cable
You know who they are.
When you go vegan, some people are d**ks about it. Period.
There’s the ones who like to say things to try and get you to bite (“mmmm bacon”), the ones who hate on you because they think you think your better than them now, and the ones who just make plain stupid remarks (“if we didn’t eat animals, we would be overrun” – enter facepalm here).
But rather than getting into rows, defending your lifestyle choices or just outright ignoring people, let’s take a look at a few of the best ways to promote a cruelty free lifestyle.
(Note: this is tested on my friends and family, colleagues and strangers, so am therefore classing as a scientific study, just so were clear).
STEP 1: BE NORMAL
This one is key. It’s a hard one for me, even pre-vegan. But seriously, go to parties, go out for dinner, eat at people’s houses (even if you take your own food). Do all the things you used to do before going vegan. To change everyone else’s perspective around you, you gotta go stealth mode on them. Once you’re in, and people are trying your amazing food, seeing how positive you are (step 3), they won’t even realise they are thinking it’s a pretty damn good lifestyle. Seed = planted.
STEP 2: EDUCATE
Talk to people, but don’t be preachy about it. Preachy vegans, preachy anything, is just annoying. Don’t be that guy. Education will change the world, not shouting at ignorant people. Gage the person. Are they interested? Have they asked you questions? Is there a topic you know they are passionate about (e.g. make-up)? If yes, use it as a window of opportunity to give them tips or mini truth bombs that will creep up on their subconscious minds at 4am and frustrate them that they can’t get back to sleep.
If you haven’t been vegan your whole life, think about what it took you to wake up, other people are still there. Get out there and spread the word, just try and avoid that row with Auntie Susan who is gunning for you because you don’t eat the same Sunday dinner as everyone else, there are no winners there.
Step 3: POSITIVITY
You know that person who talks in the same tone of voice on and on and everything is doom and gloom and glass half empty? And then think of that person who is upbeat and focuses on the good in life. If both of these people were driving a bus, whose bus would you get on? Exactly. Basically, focus on the good stuff. It can be hard when so many animals are suffering, and our planet is being savaged but all of us, as human beings, are drawn to positive, magnetic people that pull us in with their good vibes. If you show people you are happy, healthy and having a good time, who wouldn’t wanna get on your compassionate party bus?
Just remember, you can’t win em all. Accept that some haters are just gonna hate. These are your ‘lost causers’ (yes Auntie Susan, that’s you). Don’t waste your energy with unproductive conversations and maybe, just maybe, one day they will come around. But in the meantime, you’ve got a whole world of people open to change, focus on them using the above steps and you’ve got yourself a worldwide movement.