The world has too few people who are solution-oriented. It's easy to get caught up in the problems of our time and feel overwhelmed by them. Or worse, to become jaded and cynical and then stand as an obstacle to progress by shooting down all potential improvements as "unrealistic".
This page is the antidote I take when I notice similar sentiments appearing in my own head. It's a reminder of the ever-present opportunity we all have to effect positive change.
The fastest, most immediate action you can take right now is to donate. For example:
- GiveWell's Maximum Impact Fund allocates funds to the charitable interventions that do the most good for improving global health and reducing poverty.
- The Longtermism Fund from Giving What We Can and Longview Philanthropy focuses on reducing existential risks, like nuclear war and engineered pandemics.
Sometimes what's needed is a reminder of the difference you can make. Near-term results are key for sustaining long-term commitments.
Local volunteering often isn't globally optimal but it reaffirms the identity of being someone who does their part. It's viscerally satisfying to see a blighted neighborhood be restored to splendor. Rather than be limited by our biology, we can leverage it. Use that evolutionarily derived preference for short-term rewards to link the joy you feel from volunteering to the good you do through donations and your career.
Pick a local cause area that matters to you. For example: