By Executive Director Claire Louge

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about how much there is to do.

How much there is to care about. How many problems we need to solve in our sector and in our world. Everywhere I show up, I learn about something else that needs to get done, or something else that desperately needs attention and energy.

It can be easy to feel that no matter what we do, it’s never enough.

If you are a human being who is paying attention and cares, this may feel familiar. There IS a lot to care about. There ARE a lot of problems to solve. And it goes beyond our work or community- we know we need to be doing more in our personal lives, too. Exercising more. Eating better. Being a better friend, parent, caregiver, or partner. Taking care of ourselves better. Doing more. Being more. 

We’re never doing enough.

The truth is, there is an endless list of causes and things to care about. And there will always be someone who will tell you that you need to be doing more, or that you need to care about other things, too. If you care, the world will always ask for more from you. And when you show up to try, you may be told that what you’re doing is not enough.

That’s the paradox of caring. The more you care, the less you feel that what you do is enough.

Understanding this can be freeing. If you accept that you will never do enough – that you cannot actually do it all – that’s when you can get clear about what actually matters most to you.

Caring about everything means you are compassionate and that you’re paying attention, but trying to solve everything, pour your energy into everything, and do everything anyone thinks you should do, is the best way to not only fail, but to lose your drive to try. And the drive to try – the combination of your passion and your values- is your most precious resource.

It’s the most precious gift you have to give. Protect it.

So although what you or I do will never be enough, it is also always enough. Because to do anything – to show up, to try, to stay curious a bit longer, to be open to learning, to put forth whatever your best is that day, to stay at the table even when it seems hopeless, to keep moving forward, even ever so slightly – that’s enough. Because it is always more than giving up. It is always better than doing nothing because you can’t do it all or can’t do it perfectly.

Accept that you cannot do it all. Accept that you will always be asked to do more. And then do what you can. It may never be enough, but you will always enough. The world cannot afford you losing your drive to try.