Soul Food

Ever have one of those weeks when you question everything? When it seems like you work hard and accomplish absolutely nothing? Like nothing you do matters? Last week, I felt that way.

I’ve been working at my job for just over six months now. Most days I like it; I get paid to shoot and edit videos at a university. Pretty cool! But when there’s a slow period and I don’t have a lot of work to do, I just feel like I’m taking up space. It feels like I’m letting everyone down and not meeting expectations.

But then Monday came, and projects got rolling again. We had our weekly staff meeting, and I was so encouraged by it. Turns out the only expectations I’m not meeting … are my own. I expect too much of myself and when I don’t meet my (unrealistic) expectations I beat myself up and feel like a failure. Turns out I work with a team of people who feel otherwise – which really improved my outlook and productivity this week.

Last week was also the final week to prepare for the VBS dramas I was asked to lead for church. Since this was our first year being involved in VBS, I had no point of reference to compare to. I didn’t know of our rehearsals were right on track, or if we were way behind. The scripts were entirely too complicated and confusing for children, so that was making it hard for people to memorize their lines. But Sunday’s dress rehearsal was hard for me. I felt like everything should have easily clicked into place, but last minute an actor dropped out – which totally altered everything we’d been working toward.

Even though Sunday’s rehearsal felt like a failure, the team brought their best each night. And midway through the week, I was encouraged by a cast member who told me I had done an excellent job leading this year. I’m relieved to have this experience behind me … and I know that if I’m involved next year, there are some things we can learn from this year.

To top it all off, I got an encouraging e-mail from a former supervisor thanking me for excellent work I had done for them last year. It was very out of the blue, but reminded me that I have and CAN be successful … even on weeks when I feel like a failure.

Thanks to all who encouraged me last week … whether you knew it or not. And hey … if you haven’t encouraged someone lately, why don’t you? It could never hurt … and you just might make someone’s week a little better.


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