“Someone” should do something about that… then I realized that person was me. While I do wholeheartedly believe that my life and everything that happens to me is my responsibility….I have struggled with taking responsibility in places that were outside of my little world. For example, when I see something in the community that needs to change or I see some big problem that needs to be addressed. I have a tendency to say “someone should do something…” but why not me? Why don’t I have the same sense of responsibility for my community as I do for my own life? Why is it okay to turn the other way?…. if I’m being honest, it’s not.
While I’m a dreamer, I’m grounded enough to know that I can’t solve everything that needs to be fixed in our society. BUT if not me, than who? WHO is responsible? Who is responsible for making the world a better place? I may not be the smartest, richest, prettiest, strongest, or most powerful…but I know that I can do small things to make a big difference, I do realize the power of taking an action. ANY action is better than just a good intention. From one of my favorite books by Andy Andrews:
“Everything you do matters. Every move you make, every action you take…matters. Not just to you, or your family, or your business or hometown. Everything you do matters to all of us forever.” –The Butterfly Effect
I want to share a story of how I experienced the Butterfly Effect firsthand. This is not to brag at all, I want to share because I hope that it will encourage you to take small actions when you have opportunities presented to you, that you will find courage and strength to take action and trust that you can make a difference in the world.
About a month ago, my sister shared a YouTube video on her Facebook page of her friends, The Haworths, they were auditioning for a catastrophe show on HGTV. He’s a wounded solider, they both are fellow Olmsted Falls Alumni and their story just is not fair. I watched and my first thought…”Someone should do Something for this family” Then I got a tug on my heartstring, loud and clear I heard “Shanna, you should do something”.
It scared me a little, like what could I do? This family needs $100,000. I decided to pray and sleep on it. In the morning I had an even clearer picture of what I should do and that I was fully capable of taking action. SO I did, reached out to my sister and asked if she could get in contact with the family and see if they would be open to me setting up fundraising efforts for them. After a few days and their approval, I set up an online funding site and started working with my sister, my AdvoCare Teammates, The CrossFit Box and other local businesses to start something to help the Haworths rebuild their home.
After a couple of days in, I had a lot of doubts; what was I thinking? How is this going to help them? What if no one joins me? What if we only raise $200? This is such a dumb idea. I always have these big plans that never work out. Who am I to make a difference? I’m 9months pregnant why would I start something like this now? blah..blah..blah.
A short month later we have had lots of media coverage, had 14 local businesses get involved, had multiple contractors volunteer their time, got offers to have most of the materials donated, got the attention of a non-profit agency that is covering their cost to live while they rebuild their house, raised $9,500 online alone, held a fundraising event at The CrossFit Box that brought in an additional $3,100 and raised over $3,000 off line. They still need more to finish, but because of our efforts, a local Nonprofit called NEOPAT is going to take over to help raise the rest.
The Haworth’s are going to get their house rebuilt. I am overwhelmed, amazed and honored to have been able to be part of something so incredible. Never would I have thought that my tiny action would create such a huge ripple effect…or maybe it was my sister who started it by sharing their story…or maybe it was the person that encouraged the Haworth’s to apply for the HGTV show…
See we all have our part to play, they are all equally important and they all make a difference. Our actions, small every day actions do in fact change the world. We just have to decide what kind of change that is going to be. Pay attention, take responsibility and have the courage to take action when it’s your turn. YOU will be blown away by the experiences that you will have the opportunity to be a part of, by the legacy that you will get to leave behind and by your ability to change the world. Never underestimate the effects that your small actions can have in the world.