The Happy Walk is still a Lifeline fundraiser and I am still carrying a message of hope, health and happiness.
Without the exposure I had pushing a barrow down the highway and after ending my toxic relationship with face book I will need to prepare some epic pitches for media, sponsorship, donations and connecting with supporters on the way back to the national Lifeline HQ in Canberra.
This part of preparation and continual management, even with the extra exposure of previous years, is exhausting. It is hellishly difficult, time consuming and soul crushing.
My mental health was compromised badly by this aspect of the walk. I didn’t cope with being brushed off or not being taken seriously. Even after walking more than 3/4 of the way around Australia people still don’t believe me.
I needed to choose between continuing this damaging pursuit of assistance and awareness or just doing what i do best, walking and sharing with the people I meet along the way.
This year I have chosen a compromise. In each town or region I walk through between Gladstone and Canberra I’ll call ABC radio because I appreciate their integrity and the local community connection feels great. If they are not interested it won’t matter, I’ll just try again in the next region. The less media I contact, the less often I’m rejected.
It is a decision for my own wellbeing.