Nonprofit Summer Exercise 5: Love, Actually


Today’s exercise is a simple one, and acts as a bit of a teaser for a very exciting announcement tomorrow… stay tuned for more on that!

Exercise 5: Love, Actually

Do you love your job?

I bet you do.

I bet you probably say, or in the past have said things like “it’s not a job, it’s a calling” or “there’s nowhere else I could imagine being.”

“This is what I was meant to do.”

This is something we in the sector share – regardless of whether we are fundraisers, marketers, communicators, programmers, directors, or any kind of mish-mash of all of the above. It’s something I hear time and time again from so many people.

I feel like I have the best job calling because every day I meet people who are passionate about changing the world.

Furthermore, I’m often the person they come to when they want to discuss big, bold, bodacious ideas. Sometimes (not always) there is beer involved, or at the very least an intense amount of caffeine that always leaves me sweating and red in the face from talking too fast about too many awesome things.

Be the change you want to see… but my friend, if only it were as easy as a motivational poster makes it sound.

Along with the passion, the lust for creating better things for communities, the zeal for making connections between other passionate people and causes… with all of this comes the difficult task of overcoming what some days seems like a billion hurdles.  Time, money, mandate, policy, teams, politics, drama. I could list them all, but we all know them. These are the things that suck the love from our lives. The things that cause us to burn out, get frustrated, and forget why we came in the first place.

For a sector filled with people who have a love for sector, we sure all could use a shot of love, couldn’t we?


This is one the the simplest (and at the same time most difficult) reflection activities you’ll do. It’s one I love doing at my Playdates (with the added benefit of doing a ridiculously fun craft along with it!)

First, make a list of 5 things you love about the sector.

Second, make a list of 5 things you love about your organisation.

Finally, make a list of 5 things you TOTALLY KICK ASS AT.

You can list more than 5 if you like (list a billion if you can think of them.) You’d be surprised how difficult this can be, especially if you’ve been having a rough time at work.

Keep these lists handy. Read them everyday, or at the very least, when you’ve had a bad day. 

As the old saying goes, we need to love ourselves before we can love someone else.

From our chairs, we need to be able to love what we do to truly serve the people we work for – whether it is program participants, donors, or a broader community.

Love yourself today. Tomorrow, a very fun and exciting announcement about loving who we work for!