“I know my life is better when I work from the assumption that everyone is doing the best they can.”
- Brene Brown
You are doing the best you can. We know it - now you need to believe it too. One of our favorite principles and understanding as an organization is that everyone is doing the best that they can with the tool kit they have. Adopting this belief has radically shaped our mission and the initiatives we implement today.
For many of us, this concept is hard to swallow. In a culture that constantly tells us we need to do more, to be more, this saying can often feel like an excuse. But what if we took a step back from these cultural expectations we put on ourselves and others, removed any preconceived notions, and lived by the belief that we are all doing the best we can What if you believed that about yourself? It’s impossible for any of us to consistently reach the high standards we set for ourselves day in and day out and inevitably we often fall short - and that’s okay. We can be harsh and judgmental to each other, but at times what we don’t realize is how harsh we can be on ourselves. When we all start to subscribe to the notion that we are all doing the best we can with the toolkit we have, we not only start to give others grace but ourselves too.
As HACAP likes to put it, we give a hand up, not a handout. We don’t see our generosity as a free pass for people to take advantage of, we are just providing the tools and resources necessary to build stronger communities. As we continue to face and overcome countless obstacles, including Covid-19 and a Derecho, now more than ever our families, friends, and neighbors need to feel our compassion. With this knowledge and understanding, we continue to approach every interaction thinking the best of people and their situation instead of the worst. When we do this, magic happens. So, when the time comes that you need an extra tool, know that we believe wholeheartedly that you're doing your best at that moment, and we honor that. Best of all, know that there is a whole community of donors, families, partners and more rooting for you.
In short - let’s strive to create a healthier more welcoming community by having compassion for the struggles we and others face. Displaying love and generosity for one another will create much more positive energy in the world. It could, as Brown says, even make your life a little better.