The 5 stages of the ALS ice bucket challenge:

The 5 stages of the ALS ice bucket challenge:

Well here we are again. In the midst of a very successful albeit strange viral campaign. The last time this happened to us we were dancing around out office for 30 seconds and competing for the most provocative or elaborate Harlem Shake. This time, however, we’ve grown up a bit and attached a bit of charity to our ridiculousness. This time the reason we are dumping ice water on our heads is to raise awareness to Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or as it’s more commonly known Lou Gehrig’s disease. And in the midst of all this we find ourselves experiencing a wide range of emotions, trying to decide if we should hate this, participate, ignore it or embrace it. It can be confusing but in the end we will all make it through it.

Here are the 5 stages of the ALS ice bucket challenge:

  1. Denial

When we first hear about the challenge we don’t believe it. That can’t actually be a thing. Why are people dumping ice water on their heads? It will never catch on. It can’t catch on. No, no it will definitely not.


  1. Anger

But then we realize it has caught on and in a huge way. Your friends, celebrities and politicians are all taking turns uploading clips of themselves dumping buckets and coolers of ice in glorious excitement. And you can’t stand it. How can this, THIS be a helpful cause? We are wasting water to try and raise awareness? This is just an outlet for people to show off and bring attention to themselves.


  1. Bargaining

Then we see that it is actually making a difference. Every day there are actually millions being dumped into this cause- more than it’s ever gotten before. And we think, “Well, it might be helping a little bit, but it’s still stupid. I’ll watch the ice bucket fail videos and let it go, but I will never participate.”


  1. Depression

It’s never going away. It will be here forever. Every other post on Facebook is a video. Maybe I’ll delete Facebook. Maybe I’ll move up into a mountain and renounce my friendships. I just want it to go away so I can be happy again.


  1. Acceptance

And then all of the sudden you reach this point. You say, “You know what? This really isn’t that bad of a thing at all. Sure it’s a bit unorthodox but its getting people talking. Getting people moving. Getting people outside and involved. Its getting people to research about it. Getting people to figure out ways to bring attention to other important causes.” And in the end – Its actually kind of fun.


I can promise you I have experienced ever stage in the cycle, and once I finally accepted and embraced that this viral wave was here to stay and that in the end it’s actually kind of a good thing, I can go back to being happy again.

Here’s mine and some of my favorites.

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