By this stage, you’re probably thinking to yourself that you’ve got things sorted. You’ve come up with the crazy idea to bike the world, climb the tallest mountain or overcome your craziest challenge. The best part about this stage is that you’ve backed yourself up. The idea you’ve chosen to pursue is no longer a distant reality but instead has become a pizza in transit.
But for this next part, it’s important that you check that everyone knows whats coming. To raise the awareness factor and build a social following. Garner the support of third parties and start receiving sponsorships from people locally or from all across the world. Not everyone will need this step in helping them achieve their life goals but raising awareness and building an external source of momentum is a good backup.
For my bike ride across the north island I wrote blogs: Blog 098 Solo Cycle for Children 2017 – THE JOURNEY, created a Givealittle page: Solo Cycle For Children and had a very prominent face in social media outlets. This would help me reach out to communities around the country who could stand along the side of the road, or offer their room up to help cover the expense.
Travel likes to suck up money. Everything is expensive on the road. From toothpaste at a local dairy to a shabby little motel in Auckland, everything at a price. What was cool about my bike ride was that I was able to establish a strong community of people who were already well connected throughout the country and were able to connect me to people who were able to help out with the ride.
One morning before the ride I was sitting in my lounge at home worrying intensely about not having enough funds to support me along my journey. I still hadn’t found accommodation for two locations and wasn’t going to have nearly enough money for food or drink either. There was no knowing if it was going to work out.
With my tail between my legs, I finally mustered up the courage to ask my mum to help keep her son alive. I had my cell phone in my hand getting ready to find our last conversation so I could tap on the phone icon. But just before I did that a thought went passed my mind to check my bank account.
Having purchased a whole range of new cycling gear to keep me warm and dry from rain and the winter breeze, the last time I checked my account it was at a nice healthy $66.70, definitely not enough to pay for two nights accommodation or to buy sausage rolls and hot meat pies on the job.
When I checked my Westpac banking app, and I opened up the digital wallet I noticed that my account had fetched over $750 in conjunction with a much needed and appreciated sponsorship from a crew down in Christchurch. Needless to say, moments later I phoned my mum to tell her I loved her deeply.
With my tail no longer between my legs, and her voice sounding like she was expecting me to ask for a fat stack of money to do a bike tour that she did not consent to. Let me just say that at no stage did I take out the satisfaction of rubbing it in. No “I told you so’s” but instead just a quiet wisp of gratefulness.
Gratefulness for the support for a cause that I had raised. For a bike ride that I was doing. This sort of incredible support didn’t stop there either. It wasn’t just in the form of money too, instead, there were offers of people making their bedsheets for me to rest beneath and offerings of cookies and promises of chantings roadside as I would bike through their respective towns. Their presence on social media was integral to my success in raising awareness for young people in care.
Without their consistent efforts, I would never have made it. The pizza doesn’t go the distance without a skilled and paid delivery crew. In the beginning, we raised over $800 in one day, and by the end of the ride, we were listening to the tune of $6000 being pumped into the lives of underprivileged care experienced young people all around the country.
A lot of hard work goes on behind closed Facebook conversations. Beyond all the post sharing or words were spoken, the encouragement from connected people to connect with other connected people internally really is the toppings and sauce. That spirit is what encourages yourself and inspires others to follow your lead. When you believe then others will too.
By raising awareness of something you believe to be worth the time of others will be worth the time of others. Other people will get behind you if you’re behind you. Above all else, the primary reason for raising awareness is to encourage others and also remind yourself of why you wanted to do this in the first place when you chose to do this in chapter one.
But remember to be sure back in chapter three again. Check the reality of doing what you’re doing. Make sure that this is really what you want to do because you’re inadvertently raising expectations. The louder you yell the more people will hear you. Don’t be the boy who cries wolf, instead be the boy who delivers pizzas.
Now it’s time to get started. It’s time to talk about getting things done and riding it out to the end. In the next chapter, we’ll dig in deep and talk about the looming dangers of doing what you promised and the hardships which follow!
Thanks for checking in!