With 2014 coming to a close, we thought you’d enjoy these reflections on how our colleagues and clients inspired us this year and why these experiences make us feel grateful.
What’s best about working at Mission Minded? On a daily basis, we witness the passion, dedication, and hard work that drives others to make a difference in our world. Read on for thoughts from our team, and ask yourself what makes you feel grateful in your own work.
Jennie: I’ve been struck this year by how many of our clients are serving people many of us never see, or maybe even choose not to see. The woman or child being physically hurt in their own homes, the mentally ill people surviving — inexplicably — on the streets, the twenty-something who has lost hope in a happy future and who quietly sits home alone due to a physical limitation, the mom too poor to access rights you and I take for granted every day. Our clients who work to improve the lives of these people wow me. Some days I can’t believe my good fortune in being allowed to help them in some small way.
Zach: I’m reminded that every organization we work with exists because an individual chose to invest in his convictions. Again and again people — some wealthy, and some less so, some like you and me, and some very different — choose generosity over self-interest. It astonishes me that every day millions of people make a decision to forego purchasing a TV or a coffee or a contribution to their retirement fund and instead invest in bettering their communities. It reaffirms my faith in humanity.
Jason: I’m grateful that I get to work with both great co-workers and collaborators, and also with great clients who are actively striving to make things better. I’m grateful that for all of the sad and nasty and unfortunate things that happen in our world, there are still genuinely good and inspiring acts going on every day.
Sarah: What am I grateful for? The quiet humility of many nonprofit leadership teams. All the nonprofits with whom we work are so focused on the work they do for others that they hardly ever step back and say “What are we best at? Where do we shine?” Facilitating that moment where they see what makes their organization brilliant is inspirational to me, every single day.
Rod: In this great big world, I’m grateful to help do-gooders in my very own neighborhood. It’s inspiring to walk down the sidewalk and look into the eyes of so many who benefit from the nonprofits we serve — a kid whose dad has found affordable child care that will shape her future; a young, HIV positive guy who is provided with the tools to live a healthy life; an artist who joins other makers to create and sell their crafts. Every day that I get to help someone in my own backyard may increase the chance of their impact reaching beyond our community.
Carrie: On a daily basis, I have the opportunity to create positive change in people’s lives, and surround myself with others who are passionate about that as well. It’s a way of life, and I’m proud to work with people who embrace it. It’s not about selling something; it’s about the ripple effect of our work creating positive change in people’s lives. Together, we make a difference. And for that, I couldn’t be more grateful.
Stephanie: I’m grateful to spend my days collaborating with such dedicated people, both within Mission Minded and at our client organizations. With every client interaction, I recognize the clarity of mind and purpose of people who have devoted their lives to improving their communities, both near and far. Inspired by their steadfastness, I’m reminded that the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. I’m thankful, every day, for the opportunity to support them in their service.
Carolyn: Over the past year, I have been struck by the power of collaboration. Working with others for others has consistently shown me that we all have the biggest impact when we work together. I’m grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the efforts of so many different teams that formed out of the desire to make a lasting difference in the lives of others. With every interaction — both internally at Mission Minded and externally with our wonderful clients — I’m reminded that it truly does take a village, and success is always more rewarding as a result.
Julie: From colleagues to clients, I feel fortunate to feel inspired and encouraged by people every day. I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to be surrounded by people who demand greatness from themselves, elevate those around them, and are passionate about doing good through their work, actions, and attitudes.[/three_fourth_last]
Karen: What an amazing world we live in that I can live in New Orleans and work with talented and committed people and organizations from coast to coast. And what’s more, these people are doing everything they can to make the world a different, better place! Digital collaboration with clients and colleagues provides me with a fresh spark and a revived sprit with every new project. [/three_fourth_last]
Kirsten: Over the past year I have been reminded how important it is to be open to new ways of solving long-standing challenges. If the “old way” isn’t working, change it up. This can be tough, but it is critical to success. [/three_fourth_last]
Ann: Imagine you have a little jar with cream in it and you shake, and shake, and shake. After a minute, you stop and check to see if the contents are different. To the eye, it’s the same. So, you shake some more. Still, nothing. Finally, you switch hands and shake the jar again–this time for so long that you kind of forget you are shaking. Then, in an instant, something happens inside the jar. It feels weighted and off balance in your hands. You look inside. Butter!
Throughout this year, I’ve come to appreciate the value of slowing down and letting some things take their course.
What made you feel grateful this year? Please share your reflections with us in the comments below.