Recently, I started a wellness campaign at work to encourage employees to take the stairs. It's been great, but I've learned a few lessons along the way and thought you should know them... just in case you ever decide to embark on a similar adventure.
1. You will talk about stairs. A lot.
Since the beginning of my campaign, I've become a sounding board for people who want to talk about stairs. Which is apparently a lot of people. The most common topic of stair-related conversation? 6 degrees of stair climbing, eg: "Remember my friend Ellen? Her husband's co-worker climbed down 3 flights of stairs recently!" Spoiler alert: It's not as fun as 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon.
2. You will accumulate garbage.
Somewhere along the line, I started feeling ownership of the stairs. If I saw litter in the stairwell, you better believe I was picking it up and sticking it in my purse. And that is how, three weeks later, I became the crazy empty Milky Way wrapper lady.
3. You will succumb to peer pressure.
Once people started to realize that I was behind the stairs thing, it was not safe for me on the elevator anymore. I got plenty of evil eyes, and I was just waiting for someone to ask me how I could promote the stairs when I was clearly an elevator-rider myself. I hate making small talk in the elevator to begin with, much less small talk that involves me defending myself. So, I started taking the stairs. Every. single. time. I walked down 6 flights of stairs at least twice a day. It cannot be a coincidence that around this time I woke up at 2 am screaming bloody murder with my first ever charlie horse. Take it from me, people. The stairs are dangerous.
4. People really like the title "Step it Up" or, simply, "Take the Stairs".
The name of my campaign was Stairs 2012 -- like a presidential campaign. The name was everywhere; on every sign, sticker, banner, flyer. Yet people still came up to me and said things like, "Great job with Step it Up!" or "I saw Take the Stairs on the news last night!"
5. You will become afraid of the stairs.
I became convinced that I was going to die in the stairwell. I have this theory that if something will make a really great headline, it will happen. For instance, if I was on any mode of transportation and both Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves happened to be aboard it as well, that boat/plane/train would sink/crash/derail. The headline would just be too amazing for it not to happen. Anyway, Stair Advocate Murdered in Stairwell is just begging to be published.