Recently I’ve found myself reflecting on the comments shared by our former colleagues during the retiree panel on the final day of YDI. It’s interesting that some of the problems our earlier counterparts were facing 20 plus years ago are some of the exact same issues we battle today. Contrastingly, some of the very same joys they felt likewise ring true still now. Above all, there were three “keys to success” that I took away from their discussions.
- Give a darn. If you are going to do good 4-H work, you have to care…a lot. You have to care about kids, families, colleagues, and your programs. We may not always agree on what the ideal should look like, but we should all agree to care. This starts with “giving a darn” and taking pride in our work, our organization, and each other.
- Do the thing. You have to work, and you have to work hard. When I was growing up if I ever dared to complain about the limited chores I had my parents would remind me- “It’s called work for a reason. If it was fun, it would be called fun.” Now granted, I personally think we have a LOT of fun in our jobs, but honestly some things are just “work” but if we are going to do great things for the good people in our communities, we have to do the work.
- Let it go. Sometimes on the job we are faced with things we don’t like. MORE reporting? A change in Volunteer Screening…AGAIN!?! Oftentimes there are things we are faced with which are beyond our control. When these things happen you can complain about it, whine about it, or otherwise lament about it or…”do the thing” (see Step 2). While some venting can be therapeutic, at some point you have to “let it go.”
I’ve posted the following graphic below in my office as a gentle reminder of these keys to success, and I suggest you consider doing the same. Happy Monday!