What To Do When No One Will Listen To You

Switch people: If no one will listen to you, maybe you’re trying to talk to the wrong people. Find other people. There’s more than one way to the top of the mountain. And, government leaders may be officially in charge but they don’t have all the power.

Switch channels: If no one will listen in person, try writing letters. Or posting on social media. Or blogging. Or radio. (It’s not all that hard to get on the radio as a guest if you have something worthwhile to convey, and can do it in a coherent and rational manner. If no one wants you as a guest, call in to the show. Or, get podcasting equipment and start your own podcast.)

Switch tones: If no one will listen, it could be because your tone is persistently whiny, derogatory, too loud, etc. As frustrating as it is to not have anyone care what you have to say, strive to maintain a calm, strong, peaceful tone.

Switch mentalities: stop thinking of yourself as “poor me” “a person who is never taken seriously”; etc. Instead think of yourself as persistent, diligent, tough, a person offering great resources, a voice for the voiceless, a force of nature like dripping water that will always find a place to flow.

Tag experts: If you can’t get anyone to listen, write a post on social media and tag a recognized expert in the area you’re talking about. Or write a letter to the editor, making reference to an authoritative source. Link to expert books/articles; boost experts. If you have something to say, back it up with information that’s already out there.

Call on people as centers of influence: “You are a leader in the community. I could really use your help getting this idea out there. Will you help me?” Flattery is OK as long as it’s true and for a good cause.

Switch modes: Instead of trying to talk and push your solution, listen. Learn what’s bugging people. The solution you’re trying to offer might not be the right one for the time and place. But by listening to what’s on people’s minds, what their priorities are, you will be in a better position to offer an idea, resource, or solution that meets people right where they need it. And whether or not you can solve someone’s problem, listening from the heart is a kind, compassionate act. Furthermore, switching to full-on “Listen” mode for awhile can be a great relief for us activists. Pushing to make oneself heard is exhausting!