This Year-Long Challenge Actually Means Something

Forget your year of no deodorant or refusing to shave. This is what you should be doing.

Dreamers and daredevils get attention all the time for undertaking something for a year -- say, cooking all of Julia Child's recipes or not looking in a mirror or taking a daily picture of yourself.

And sure, a year's worth of anything is an accomplishment. But is it helping anyone?

Alex Sheen is taking the concept to a new level with Because I Said I Would, an organization that undertakes challenges to highlight the amazing, difficult work nonprofits do every day. Along the way, he's encouraging people to make and commit to their own promises to help communities.

It all came out of Sheen's eulogy for his father, who never reneged on a promise. He was a man of his word, and Sheen is determined to follow his example.

Sheen is on his own year-long challenge to work with a nonprofit every week in 2014. He's walked across Ohio to raise awareness of sexual assault, a promise he made to the Cleveland kidnapping victims. He's taken a polar plunge, worked in a food pantry and even offered drunk people a ride home to save them from getting behind the wheel. 

Check out some of Sheen's efforts and remember next time you're mulling going a year without shaving or taking a year of selfies, there are much greater causes that need your energy.

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