How To Make A Great Call:
1. Organize a time (half hour max) Monday thru Friday, from 9-5 to meet with a group of friends or colleagues, to make 5 calls. Hold each other accountable and inspire one another with support and even a reward system (think Secret Santa or afternoon Coffee, or even Thursday and Friday Early Happy Hours).
2. Print out your scripts and talking points. Highlight/Circle any facts you may want to address in your call to add to your script.
3. Identify the member of Congress (or committee) you are calling and his/her phone number. You can google this representative if you want to learn more about him/her; however, it is not necessary to know where they stand before you call. This is something you can discuss with their staffer when you are on the phone, if you would like. Your focus should solely be on making the call – it is being counted, like a vote. If applicable, it may be helpful to know whether the Congress Member you are calling is a Republican or Democrat.
4. Find a seat at a table, or a chair/space/nook to call where you can zone in to your call.
5. Read through the call script once out-loud to familiarize yourself with the language.
6. Give yourself permission to be human when you make this call. You are not a robot, and do not need to be perfect. You are also legally entitled to make this call. It is your right as an American Citizen. It does not need to be perfect either - you are not performing onstage to a room full of critics who will make or break your career. You are simply speaking to someone whose job it is to receive your call and listen to you. You have the power to make a difference just by calling your reps and reading these scripts– and this is how!
7. Remember that you are talking with a staffer, not the rep him/herself. The staffer is in their office, answering phones, specifically to receive and count your call.
8. Dial and either read the script, or improvise using the script. You know what you want to say. You do not need to read all of the script – just get out the item you are opposing. The extra information is simply there for you if you want to engage in a lengthy conversation. Plus, if you forget or feel tongue-tied, the script is right in front of you like a trampoline to safely bounce off of.
9. Set yourself free from pressure. Remember - every call is practice for the next one, and the more you call, the easier it gets.
10. If you can, after you have made the call, note if you apologized during your call. How many “sorries” did you use? Was your voice grounded with confidence or more childlike? Did you breathe? Did you end your statements with a question mark?It is helpful to recognize how you are communicating – not to critique yourself – but to learn and grow with each call. If you are apologizing for your calls – definitely take note of this. This is very common at first, and means you are unconsciously disempowering and even shaming yourself to a stranger. If this is the case, take a moment to shift your perspective – release the shame and fear, and instead choose to respect and be kind to your badass self. The less fear you have, the more calls you will make, and the more calls you make, the more you will be saving our country. So thank you. Your voice is a super power, it is time to use it.
11. For one call, as an experiment, allow yourself to be a different person. Explore what feels liberating if you are calling as an alter ego. The stakes feel and are high in the content of these calls, but the call itself does not need to feel like jumping off a cliff. Sometimes it is easier to set yourself free in your calls, by pretending to be a different person. Your imagination will set you free from needing to be perfect and add ease to your process. This experience is very educational and can remind you that these calls can be deeply satisfying and oddly fun – because really, you are finally using your voice, getting activated and feeling heard.
12. Do not expect immediate results from your calls. This process is cumulative and more powerful than it feels at first. The calls are having a huge impact on Congress, and the first result you will see right away is your developing ability to communicate what you stand for, with a different kind of ownership and possibility. The stronger your calling muscles and confidence get, the more you inspire others to do the same. Additionally, for the 2018 elections, all candidates will need volunteers to do phone banking – and you will be a pro by then! So it is time to get involved and make these calls now.Download How To Call PDF