“I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.” ~ Edward Hale, American writer and historian
I will confess to having heard this quote on one of the many awesomely bad and ridiculously frightening crime TV shows that I like to watch. But I really liked the sentiment. And it’s a good one to keep in mind as people lead increasingly fast-paced lives, that often pull them in 23467 different directions (a rough estimate, from concrete data…).
On the simplest level, this reminds me that my own best effort is enough, no matter how much pressure I put on myself or perceive from others. I can’t let the fact that my to-do list is a mile long keep me from accomplishing something productive at work, or over a weekend. One of the kids in my skating class might be crying and kicking the ice (a completely hypothetical situation…oh ok, fine, this was actually what happened in my class this morning…), but I’ve just got to let it roll off my shoulders and keep going. There are good days and bad, no one is perfect, and as Mr. Hale so astutely points out: I am only one person, and I don’t have all the answers. Today might not have been my most inspired moment as a skating coach, but there’s always next Saturday. And I’ll learn from this Saturday, which is the beauty of it.*
*This is much easier to see now, when my unhappy skating pupils are gone for the day, but hey, hindsight is 20/20, right? 😉
And on a grander scale, this quote reminds me that one person can make a difference, and can touch his or her small corner of the world and leave it for the better, in some special way. It’s something I’ve always believed in, and admired in others.
And that gives me hope. And something to strive for, every day.