Marketing is Easy, Compared to Life’s Real Challenges

July 20, 2014

Most days we’re so caught up in our daily challenges of trying to determine the next best blog post to write about, what type of great content we can create, the latest in SEO best practices and how to best help our clients succeed. At times we suffer from information overload, feel overwhelmed with setting up, running and managing our businesses. We get into a feel-sorry-for-me attitude when things just don’t go quite our way. We are so caught up in our own head and make major issues out of relatively minor hurdles. We forget about what is most important – our loved ones; family, friends, coworkers and all those that are part of our community that are faced with life’s real challenges. Folks that are dealing with crippling, painful and possibly life-ending diseases or tragic losses of loved ones.

I have been fortunate that over the past year, my business has provided an opportunity to get to know a community of wonderful, giving people. During that time, I have seen many faced with challenges far greater than just the day to day challenges associated with setting up, creating and running a business.

Matt and Sarah, having to experience Sarah’s father suffering through a painful debilitating rare form of cancer, Tim and his wife losing their infant son to a rare disease, John whose brother is suffering from cancer and can barely stand and needs to be there for his brother while they search for a facility that can care for his needs or my old roommate and good friend John, who was diagnosed with a brain tumor last fall and battles each day.

We all have to endure and persevere through these times…watching a loved one get sick and suffer is one of the most difficult time one goes through. When that happens our hearts ache and we want to bear that burden for them. All we can do is be there, give a comforting hand, gentle touch, help them in any way possible and pray for their burdened to be lightened. It is in these times we realize that being overwhelmed by a project is just not that big of a challenge. Sure, we have to invest a little more time, but it’s insignificant and pales in comparison to seeing the burden of our loved one is enduring.

You see marketing is easy when compared to the real challenges that life will throw at us.

I have had my own personal challenges that brought all this into focus. Last year, as I launched my marketing business, my mother’s health took a turn for the worse. For 4 months I spent a Mom-Collage-framed lot of time driving between Charlotte and Massachusetts to spend time with her. I was fortunate to spend the whole week with her just a few days before she passed. As I left, I sensed that it would be the last time I would see her on this earth.

For 20 years she fought one health issue after another: Cancer, overdose of radiation that burned her intestines and almost killed her, being prescribed Fosamax, a drug that had a side effect of causing her jaw bone to deteriorate and great pain to her mouth, a stroke, repeated infections, pneumonia and dementia. She battled every day, but always remained optimistic and never bitter even for the medical-induced health issues created by the medical and drug industry itself. She had multiple opportunities to sue and win cases against doctors, medical facilities and a drug company, but refused. Instead she chose to put whatever happened behind her, get on with her life and remain optimistic that the best was still yet to come. For her it has.

You see marketing is easy when compared to the real challenges that life will throw at us.

Recently I just took up cycling again. Last year four of my brothers did the 75 mile MS Bike ride from Cherry Hill to Ocean City, NJ. This year all 6 of my siblings will be riding along with two of my nieces and my nephew. One sibling, my brother Mark, will be with us in spirit.

Mark, suffered from Primary Progressive MS. A form of MS that only 10-15-percent of MS victims have. As the name indicates, it is exactly that progressive MS that continues to attack and deteriorate the myelin around the Central Nervous System. The symptoms of MS vary from person to person, for Mark it was chronic pain and extreme skin sensitivity. For him, it was as if the skin nerve endings were exposed. He became extremely sensitive touch, to the point where just wearing clothes hurt him. The only relief he felt was when he was in a pool with water at a very temperature of between 78 and 82- degrees.

Every morning and afternoon he would make the trip to the local Y and spend hours in the pool. During that time, although in pain, he used it to get to know all of the youths that worked at the Y. He provided encouragement and counseling to them. Most were in High School and sharing his experience and High School challenges with them. You see, Mark was not a very good High School student. School at that time was just not important to him. He hung out with some other like-minded student who would rather skip class, hang out and smoke. After High School, he moved away from his HS friends and created a new life. He got a full-time job, eventually went back to school at night and went on to get his Masters in Computer Science and had a career that was in the midst of of taking off when he was diagnosed with MS.

His High School experience allowed him to relate and share his experience with students working at the Y and struggling with many of life’s challenges at that age. This was evident when the whole staff of High School students showed up at his Wake and shared how much Mark helped each of them. He was a rock for all those at the Y that came to swim laps and had their own challenges and struggles going on. They would see him there every day, struggling for every stroke and lap in the pool.

You see marketing is easy when compared to the real challenges that life will throw at us.

Mark, like mother is in a much better place, relieved of his burden. While we could not do anything to carry his burden while he was alive, we have decided to help others suffering with MS, by raising awareness and money. Take a look at our video above, Mark’s Striders, City to Shore MS Bike Ride and if you are moved, please consider supporting this cause here.

I know that we sometimes feel overwhelmed with the daily tasks, calls, interruptions or we feel disappointed when we don’t get that new client. As I told my son, after he had a bad semester at school and thought we would be upset with him; if it’s not a health related issue that can’t be cured than it’s not a problem as long as you are willing to work to fix it.

Keep everything in perspective and keep all those that are carrying a burden in your hearts and prayers, because:

Marketing is easy when compared to the real challenges that life will throw at us.

Michael Beauchemin

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Certified Inbound Marketing Consultant committed to helping businesses grow sales through measurable, accountable marketing metrics.
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