Forming the Habit of Expression
In the early phases of our Cherish venture, the most common question we get is “why are you passionate about bringing this product to the world?” One thing I appreciate is that Peter, our Founder/CEO, and I have slightly different answers to that question. Peter’s initial inspiration for the product was born out of a realization that if something tragic happened to him that he would not have an effective way to leave behind messages for his loved ones.
When Peter first presented the idea to me I could see his vision for how Cherish will fill that very important need. Cherish will allow for the capturing of meaningful memories that will become priceless to family members who lose a loved one, regardless of whether that loss is sudden or anticipated. As part of the vision, Peter mentioned the idea of “in-app coaching” and almost immediately I became clear on why I’m passionate about Cherish.
On my Mom’s birthday last year I sent her a Happy Birthday text. I’m sure it was more than simply a “Happy Birthday” with a thumbs up emoji, but I can’t remember what it said and I’m sure she can’t either. She was aware that I was thinking of her, and beyond that, it was a missed opportunity to actually deepen my relationship with her.
Why didn’t I call her? Because I never know how long a phone call will be, and I’m sure I was “too busy.” Lame? Of course. Am I the only one who’s guilty? I doubt it.
Why didn’t I mail her a handwritten letter? Because I didn’t plan far enough ahead. Again, lame, and I don’t think I’m alone.
Cherish provides a tool that removes the above excuses and still allows for a more heartfelt and meaningful form of communication. Cherish hugs are delivered one way so your time investment is controlled. Cherish hugs can also be delivered real-time, so planning ahead is not a requirement.
The reality is that this capability has always existed. My phone calendar can remind me when it’s my Mom’s birthday, and I could simply take a video of myself sharing thoughts and then text/email that video to her.
So why didn’t I do that? For the same reasons you didn’t: I don’t like taking videos of myself – I didn’t know what to say.
This is where the magic of Cherish lies. Taking a video of yourself to send to a loved one is similar to going to the gym each morning. When you think about doing it you don’t want to. After you do it you’re so happy that you did. This is why billions of dollars are spent on tools/trainers/methods to create accountability around personal fitness.
Since launching Cherish I’ve delivered dozens of hugs to beloved friends and family members for a variety of life events. I can attest that it’s exactly like going to the gym. It’s uncomfortable deciding you’re going to do it, and then it feels wonderful after you’ve done it. You know you’ve delivered a more meaningful bit of communication to someone you care about and that you’ve deepened that relationship. And, also similar to going to the gym, it gets easier each time.
The magic of Cherish will be in our ability to help the population at large overcome the anxiety that they have to deliver more meaningful messages (hugs) to those that they love. The world continues to shift to communication that is more global (social media) and shallow (texts vs. in-person visits). Cherish exists to reverse this trend so that hundreds of millions of people will capitalize on opportunities to deepen their relationships with those that they love most. People yearn for more connection in their lives, and our mission is to help provide them the tools and confidence to do it.