Buy a hand-crafted ceramic daffodil from the Ten Thousand Daffodils installation

30 Steps: Influence

Step 28 : Family and friends

If one person were to spread a message to ten people on one day and the next day those ten people told it to ten more and so on, it would only take ten days for the whole world to hear that message. Inspiring the people in your life to care about the environment is so important. 

  • Start a conversation with your friends or family about an environmental issue that interests you. Perhaps you could talk about a recent headline or open the conversation with a question asking them about their opinions.  
  • It is important that you listen to the point of view of your friends and not to lecture them, but rather have a friendly and open-minded conversation.  
  • It might be useful to relate a topic to something that they are interested in, for example secondhand fashion apps are currently very popular so by talking about the latest item of vintage clothing you have purchased, you could start a conversation about the harmful impact of fast fashion and influence them to do something that they enjoy while being kind to the planet.  
  • Inspire people by example. If you are going out with a friend for coffee, take your reusable cup which might make them think they could do the same. Talk about the changes you have made such as reducing your plastic use, cycling more or going on holiday by train. You don’t need to boast about this as some people made find change more difficult than others, but by talking about the challenges you have faced, you could help them consider doing the same at home.  
  • Get your facts right and consider a balanced opinion. When you read articles, review them critically. Ask questions like where did this come from? Has it been written by experts? Is it in a reliable source? Usually, articles that reference primary scientific literature such as reports or papers are more trustworthy. Information on charities’ websites is generally accurate, however, it is still important to consider where they obtained the information and whether they have any bias. It can also help to see if you can find the same fact in multiple different places. Using reliable information will help your friends and family to trust you. 
  • You could set a family challenge such as who can go the longest without buying an item of clothing. Get creative!