Two people talking about climate change

One of the best ways to talk about climate change is to connect over shared values like family and community. (Photo: Priscilla Du Preez via Unsplash)

One of the most important things you can do about climate change is to talk about it.

People trust their peers, family members and loved ones more than they trust experts, scientists and environmental organizations. You can talk to people about climate change in ways that we can’t. You are more likely to open people’s minds.

We know this can be tough when it’s with people who don’t share your perspective. We’ve put together some resources to help you learn to talk to people in ways that will bring us closer, not further entrench people in their existing positions.

The most important thing to remember when talking about an issue with those who don’t share your views is that people cannot communicate effectively when they feel threatened. Direct attacks — whether in the form of arguments, evidence or name-calling — limit our capacity for reason, empathy and self-reflection. First, we must make people feel safe and heard and then find common ground.