Oprah Does it Again


Oprah for president.

Oprah heals all wounds.

Oprah, this little black girl (woman) is watching and is inspired.

I started the new year limiting myself to 3 hours of TV each week to give myself more space–more space to read, write, and exercise (or write from the treadmill, my latest party trick.), so I almost missed one of the best speeches ever.

The Golden Globe Awards

Oprah ’s nine-minute speech at the Golden Globes gave me goosebumps. It’s a speech that I’ll always remember because it challenged me to reconnect with my belief in using words to ignite others to act with fierce grace.

Why did Oprah’s message so strongly resonate with me? Was it her inspiring words, spoken with conviction? Was it the energy of the crowd? Her talent at connecting with the audience?

It was all of the above. Oprah took an opportunity to amplify a movement and  connect with others.

Oprah might even have launched a social movement last night, inspiring people who might not otherwise be politically active.

Oprah gave every woman the courage to proudly stand as David (or rather Davida) against Goliath. That alone is powerful. Oprah delivered that message in a way that only she could, with a voice that can (and has) inspired millions of people around the world, with the conviction that could move people to act.

How to Bring Change

As I watched, I started saying “Amen” aloud. Just like so many others watching, I felt inspired and, dang it, I, too, want to find my Oprah voice. But then it occurred to me: maybe I already have. The more I thought about her speech in connection with my own work as a movement builder and advocate, the more I realized that what makes her so moving as a speaker are the very same things an advocate needs to ignite the spark that brings about meaningful change. Here they are:

Focus on storytelling, make a compelling argument for change, and call on people to take action. These suggestions may seem basic, and yet they’re so often overlooked in issue-based campaigns.

Tell them Your Why

And these three suggestions aren’t limited to just the advocacy arena. They can also guide you in volunteer recruitment, capital campaign s, or even gala committee work. Paint a picture of why you’re recruiting volunteers or raising funds. Share how their time or their money, their whatever you’re asking them to do or give, will make a change.   Ask people to join you.

I’d love to have a conversation about how to create powerful messages. Comment below on how you’ll use these strategies or Oprah’s message to move people to act. Ask questions if you don’t know where to start, or tag a friend who could benefit from this information. No matter what, I want to hear from you! Visit my page on facebook and comment on a post about what movement you’re building. I want to help you!

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