Post by Blog Manager Robbi Hess
Chances are, if you attend a BlogPaws Conference or are a BlogPaws Community member you love pets. For many of us turning dreams into reality for pets means many things, but when Caroline Golon spoke at the BlogPaws 2014 Conference she was speaking about ways individuals involved with shelters — or those that want to be involved with shelters — or rescues can truly be the change and make a difference.
During her interactive session she shared information and then took “requests” from those in attendance to help them solve issues they faced with gaining top of mind recognition for what they do to help pets. “BlogPaws embodies making a differences in the lives of both pets and people,” she said. Caroline knows about making a difference as she has raised close to $100,000 for rescues and shelters through her blogging and social media efforts. She shared that she has, “created a dream career and takes on dream projects.” How can one do this? She said, “Dreams manifest themselves in unexpected ways, but you have to show up in order to make them come true.”
“Showing up” is what attending a BlogPaws Conference is all about. The time spent at the conference is a way to completely immerse yourself in the pet community as both a blogger and as a pet lover or pet parent who wants to make a difference in the lives of pets. How can you turn dreams into reality for pets? Caroline shared the common themes for success factors which included:
- Taking action
- Face and banish the fears you may have that are holding you back
- Banish analysis paralysis. She said that this is a “fabulous” procrastination strategy. “Fear is highly nonproductive and the annoying cousin of procrastination.” She also said, “Your product will never be 100% baked so you just have to do it.”
- Ask for help
- Make it easy for people to help
- Be clear about your goals
- Help others live their dreams. “In the pet community we need to foster a ‘we’ mentality.”
- Be a connector, a cheerleader and a promoter
For many shelters or rescues, she understands that money is tight — or even nonexistent in some cases but she said, “No money. No problem. You need to get creative with fundraising.”
Wanting to make a difference in the lives of pets, she said, means you need to give your dream the respect it deserves. “Your attitude dictates your dream. You can’t let setbacks stop you from moving forward… you might have to change direction.”
Following Caroline’s speech she took questions from the audience and a brainstorming session kicked off. She offered tips on how to show pets in shelters in the best possible light. For example, showing a kitten playing with a toy instead of cowering in the corner of a cage is more likely to induce the reaction of wanting to adopt that pet rather than feeling sorry for it and its plight. “Start with the positive and pursue the dreams and goals you’ve set forth for yourself and your rescue or shelter.”
The information Caroline shared is ideal for anyone regardless of whether they operate a shelter or rescue or want to volunteer or if you’re a blogger trying to find a way to make a living doing what you love — blogging about pets and pet issues.