What We Can Do


climate change
+ peak everything
+ the economic unraveling
+ racism and economic disenfranchisement

What can we do about the state of the world right now? What positive changes are others putting in place?

Top-down action
+ Grassroots action
+ Individual action

In this What We Can Do series of posts, we’ll drill down into concrete grassroots action — community-level action, political activism, lifestyle change. Through this series, you’ll …

  • Learn how to distinguish greenwashing from true solutions. In order to sort things out, we’ll review the big “umbrella” problems, the massive ones that encompass all others. These umbrella problems are the problems that any proposed “solution” must tackle — or else that so-called “solution” is merely greenwashing.
  • Explore systems thinking, such as the ideas of Permaculture. What does systems thinking mean, what are examples, and how can you use it to make decisions, or to pick your next action?
  • Discover solutions, large and small, which will have the greatest impact on the big umbrella problems. How can you join in, and help these ideas get going in your local community?
  • Unleash your superpower. Throughout the series, you’ll gain tons of how-to tips on how to be a better activist. The final segment of the series helps you thread together these elements, and embrace your personal power and ability to create bigger, faster change.

This series uplifts the ideas of scientists, activists, thinkers, inventors, and artists (including David Holmgren, adrienne maree brown, Edgar Cahn, Charles Eisenstein, Paul Hawken, Richard Heinberg, Rob Hopkins, Robin Wall Kimmerer, Joanna Macy, Janelle Orsi, Michael Mann, Bill McKibben, Sherri Mitchell, Leah Penniman, Starhawk, Rowen White, and many, many more). You’ll get links to their original source material so you can experience their own words.

This series of posts gives you inside access to the material Joanne Poyourow has been teaching to college students over the past few years. It was developed in collaboration with Elektra Grant. In future months this material will be released as an ebook — but you can see it here, first!

Subscribe to Joanne’s Change-Making News now, so that you don’t miss any of the free posts!

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The What We Can Do series confronts some of the biggest problems facing humanity today. We’ll refer to these as the big “umbrella” problems. You’ll quickly discover that most of the environmental problems you can think of are really subsets of one (or more) of these.

diagram source: Joanne Poyourow

True solutions address the big umbrella problems. True solutions attack these problems where they overlap, where they blend one into the other. True solutions help move society forward with regards to all the crises we currently face. Through this series, we’ll take a look at many true solutions!

(Preeya (this-is-the-life2905), 2011)

The What We Can Do series focuses on ACTION … 9 broad categories of things you can do.

  1. Know your Story
  2. Understand the Problems
  3. Strive for Energy Descent
  4. Fit into the Ecosystem of solutions
  5. Be supportive of Top-down solutions
  6. Focus on Community-level shifts
  7. Continue your own Individual-level change-making
  8. Use Discernment to evaluate potential solutions
  9. Embrace your Superpowers
diagram source: Joanna Macy

There are many ways we can help solve those massive problems. Let’s get to work — together.

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The What We Can Do series is free, however gifts are certainly welcome — they’ll help toward the costs of book production and publicity. Thank you!

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