Opinions, beliefs, foundations, movements, and causes—there are so many different things we want to represent or support as we go about our daily life. However, everyone knows at least one person in their life whose passion for their beliefs or cause is the only thing they can talk about, and that person’s persistence can become annoying, even driving people away from their cause. You don’t want to be that person, but you still want to represent your beliefs, so how do you do it?
One way is to stop talking about it and instead start wearing it. Your words are often overshadowed by the way you act, the way you look, and the way you are dressed, so why don’t you let those ways do the talking for you? Wearing your cause on your sleeve or on your belongings can be a great way to show your support without you even having to say a word. Here’s some reasons why wearing your cause can a much more effect messenger.
When you’re trying to make an impact, little else compares to presenting a united front for a cause. Demonstrating that there is a large group of people who believe just as passionately in a cause can go a long way to making an impact on those around you. This message is even more powerful when people not only hear your united front, but also see it.
The firefighters in El Centro recognized this truth in their fundraiser for breast cancer in October. The entire department sported pink t-shirts that read “Brave enough to wear pink.” The sight of all these tough men in their bright pink t-shirts sent a powerful message to the community, helping to raise breast cancer awareness, raise money, and express their support for all those whose lives have been affected by cancer. Without saying a word, these firefighters spread their message around the community of a united front against cancer.
When it comes to supporting our cause, it’s not enough to simply tell people about them, you also have to get them to remember it. You want your message to “go viral” spreading rapidly until it is easily recognized. As those who have created popular youtube videos or memes, often the key to getting an idea to go viral is to incorporate it with a powerful and memorable image.
People are more likely to remember the image and share it with others. Many fundraisers and political campaigns have recognized the power of a visual message: they often create t-shirts or clothing lines to help promote their views. Think of Toms, a line of shoes that donated a pair of shoes for every pair bought, or the image of Obama’s face in blue, red, and white.
These brands and images have spread across the nation, taking their messages with them. Whether it’s t-shirts, shoes, posters or bumper stickers, displaying a message can be the quickest way to share them with the largest audience.
When someone is shouting their message to all who can hear, we can easily dismiss the message as one person’s crazy beliefs. This can happen with celebrities who support a cause as well. Celebrities will often support important movements and for a while, their voice will draw people’s attention to that issue. However, when that celebrity loses interest or gets involved in a scandal, the support for that movement can fall away. Still, when one person begins a movement and others join that movement by wearing it, the movement becomes owned by the people rather than the hero.
Lance Armstrong’s “Live Strong” movement is a great example of this. For years, Lance Armstrong has worked to support cancer awareness and raise money for research to fight cancer. He spread his message of taking hold of life and living it to the fullest in the face of cancer with the yellow “live strong” bracelets sported by many cancer supporters and cancer survivors. As the scandal around Lance Armstrong has risen, many have become disheartened with the man, but still they were their bracelets proudly. The idea of “live strong” as become a movement that cannot be destroyed by Armstrong’s actions; it’s an idea that has become much bigger than its originator.