Effective altruism is a philosophy that encourages people to make doing the most good they can one of their important goals in life. For the full article:
  1. 1.
    Pursue a career where you have the potential to make a big impact.
    Some effective altruists choose jobs that provide the highest wage because a high income allows one to donate more money to effective charities and, therefore, to have a greater impact. Others will apply their special talents to improving the performance of a charity, to scientific research in a field in which a breakthrough could do tremendous good, or perhaps for being an advocate for effective altruism.
  2. 2.
    Live modestly.
    Although some effective altruists seek jobs that provide the highest wage that they can make, they do not do so in order to enjoy a lavish lifestyle. Effective altruists live modestly despite earning a high wage, so that others may benefit. It is up to you to decide what a modest lifestyle will be like for you, but many of the effective altruists that Singer discusses live on a small fraction of what they make.
  3. 3.
    Consider taking a pledge to give what you can to charity.
    For some people, going forward with intentions to live modestly and donate large amounts of money to charity may require some external motivation.
  4. 4.
    Research charities to determine how many lives you can save or improve with your donations.
    One of the central considerations for determining whether or not to give to a charity is to consider the impact that your donation will have. You should look for charities that will maximize your donation and provide the most benefit for the largest number of people. Singer also acknowledges that it is important to consider the impact that a donation would have on the lives of people, which sometimes requires going beyond the numbers.
  5. 5.
    Avoid emotion-based donations.
    Many charities use emotional appeals to get people to donate money to them. Using emotional appeals to get donations is often effective, but the money that goes to these charities does not always provide tangible benefits. Set your emotions aside before you donate money to a charity and examine the impact that your donation would have on one charity compared to another charity.
  6. 6.
    Use effective charity evaluation websites.
    An important part of being an effective altruist is making sure that your money goes to the charities that do the most good. To figure out whether or not a charity uses its money well, use all of the tools at your disposal.
  7. 7.
    Spread the word about your favorite charities.
    After you start supporting effective charities, you should start encouraging others to do so as well. Spreading the word about charities that are having a large impact on people’s lives will lead to more donations for those charities and more lives saved as a result.
  8. 8.
    Consider a vegan diet.
    Singer explains that some effective altruists have adopted a vegan diet as part of their efforts to reduce the harm caused by factory farming. Adopting a vegan diet has the added benefit of reducing your personal contribution to global warming, because raising animals contributes more to climate change than the entire transport sector.
  9. 9.
    Donate a part of yourself.
    Consider donating blood, bone marrow, or even a kidney to prolong the lives of others. Some effective altruists see donating blood, tissue, and organs as an important aspect of doing the most good that they can.