Limiting your Passions – Essential?

Posted on January 21, 2008. Filed under: Nonprofit |

As I take my journey through the nonprofit world I continue to hear: organizations need to focus their service efforts, get too broad and you will lessen your impact. I can’t help but wonder if the same concept should apply to me.

I have so many passions, all of which have something to do with the nonprofit sector, but I am having trouble narrowing them down. Should I even have to narrow them down? If I don’t limit what causes I serve, will my impact on the community be lessened?

A little peak into my head will lead you to this crazy list of things I am interested in. And by interested I mean contribute to and/or research, etc.

  • capacity building and sustainability in the nonprofit sector
  • generational differences and the impact they are having on the sector
  • being a young nonprofit professional – helping other young professionals love the sector as much as I do
  • nonprofit management practices – governance, leadership, etc.
  • community building
  • resolving poverty and hunger – nationally and in Africa
  • expanding my volunteer work overseas and in the U.S.
  • women’s rights – in all areas of life
  • breast cancer research
  • orphans issues
  • entrepreneurship
  • social activism
  • being green
  • politics

I see many similarities throughout my list, but just looking at it stresses me out. I can’t take anything off the list, I have to prioritize. But I still can’t help but think if I continue down the path of working in all these areas I will wear myself out and what I do for each cause will not be good enough.

I have spoken to other Gen Yers who are just out of college that feel the same way. Maybe this is why some people believe we are not making an impact. At the same time I am proud to hear of any young professionals extending themselves beyond their career. Every effort, big or small, is worth is right?

I don’t know if I can answer this question right now. Any suggestions or profound thoughts? I am going to keep pondering…

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One Response to “Limiting your Passions – Essential?”

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You have a long life ahead of you. I think as your life progresses, doors will open and paths will be unveiled. I’m guessing you will find a way to impact many of these issues at some point along your journey. Some through your personal lifestyle, some through your volunteer work, and many through your professional work in the sector. Or, you could join the Peace Corps and knock off 5 issues at once! 🙂


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