Sitting down with my dad, I put on a pleading face and told him my dire situation. “It’s nearly the end of the school year and my grades are slipping! I just took my last test and I’m afraid it won’t help my average. What do I do?”
My dad set down his soda with a sigh and looked me straight in the face. “Listen, the end of the year is a stressful time for teachers. Just approach them respectfully, and be the first one to offer help. It’ll pay off.” What he said resonated with me as a key way to advocate for myself, and anything I was passionate about.
Too often when advocates who seek something from a person holding a position of power, like with me talking to my teacher, we lay out their case and hope for the best instead of getting involved in the process. Many times these will be people the advocates don’t even know. Asking for something without forming a relationship with that person is one of the most ineffective ways to advocate. Personalizing, and presenting yourself as a relatable, emotion-feeling, average person, will go leaps and bounds in your favor.
I had a moment to do an interview with state Senator Amy Volk, and ask her what the most common way people try to sway her opinion is.