If not because you're inspired, then why?
I had a meeting today with the most extraordinary woman, a leader in the human services field. One of us. She is smart, insightful, creative - and inspired. That's the most important part: inspired. Does she feel inspired every day? Not a chance.
Does she get lost in the muck of paperwork, and regulations that border on the absurd? You bet.
But she comes to work because she is inspired to do it differently - and to clear the decks so the people who work for her can do their most inspired work.
Driving home, I had a thought that first came to me on the first day of my first job in this field at the age of 18.
Why would you bother to do this work if you weren't going to do it in an inspired way?
Why would you suffer the injustices and put up with the absurdities unless the people you serve inspired you, or the challenge of inspiring the people you serve pulled you right out of bed in the morning?
Because the people we serve need us, you say? I call BS. The people we serve need us inspired. They need us energized and hopeful and fully engaged.
They need us to model how to be inspired in the face of adversity, how to laugh at the absurdity, and how to see possibility where others see failure.
This is our real work: to reject victimhood and embrace our own power to create something beautiful, to have fun, laugh often, cry over big loses and celebrate small victories, and to find, amidst the clutter, the endless reasons to be inspired.
If not for that, then why?