Things change. Problems that we think are insurmountable get solved. Ten years ago, standing up in front of an audience was the last thing I wanted to do. Back then, I was resigned to making do with a speech impediment I was ashamed of. It never occurred to me that I could actually use my voice as a gift to inspire people.
Saturday, September 29, 2017, I gave a TEDx talk in Texas, sharing the idea that we all have the opportunity to do our imperfect best. After the talk, I got a standing ovation.
Many problems seem absolutely overwhelming. The news is always full of them: the recent devastating hurricanes in Texas, Florida, the heartbreaking suffering in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean, the threat of nuclear war with North Korea, massive wildfires in the western United States, and Canada, earthquakes in Mexico, and the heart wrenching mass shooting in Las Vegas. These are the most troubling news stories that come to mind right now. There are, of course, countless others.
That last paragraph was exhausting to write and most likely difficult to read.
I find myself swept into a cycle of feeling endless guilt about ALL I’m not doing to alleviate the suffering in the world. It’s what I’m not doing that feeds the anguish. The relentless voice within insists I should be doing more, more, more.
After ruminating about all this, it seems clear that exhaustion and guilt won’t offer healing or bring joy to the world.
My drive to become perfect in a very imperfect world blinds me from my power to create effective change.
What small action might be the beginning of countering these overwhelming feelings of powerlessness?
I’m writing this imperfect blog and reflecting on an imperfect TEDx talk.
And you know what? I feel better.
Doing my imperfect best means I do what I can even though it is never everything.