Without a doubt, anything I have ever done that is complex or challenging - always gets messy before things get straightened out. There is a point in any work or process where things feel like they are falling off the rails. It doesn't matter the project - it always happens.
This weekend we painted our daughter's bedroom. After spending what felt like the better part of a whole day taping the trim and covering all the flooring, we got to painting. Soon enough, it was a mess. The paint on the floor was more than that on the brush - or even the walls. It was a disaster.
It was in that moment where it felt like we'd never finish, where we would be stuck with paint stains and poorly cut trim forever - that I realized, this is just a phase . . . it will be over soon enough.
Our work, helping to take complex and challenging issues and circumstances related to health access for marginalized women and children, and build sustainable models of care - it's the same thing. The work always reaches a point where it feels overwhelming, where it feels just too big to complete. At that point, things get messy.
We're working on a large, 5-year research study. The goal of the Center of Excellence study is to identify, define, codify and package a model approach to serving the needs of children living in residential care. It's a complex project. There are many moving parts. It's just at the phase where it is starting to get messy. And, it couldn't be better.
We know that sticking with the complex and being comfortable in the messy - is the path to true innovation. We also know that holding true to our commitment in spite of the messiness, is the best approach for helping all children gain access to the lives they deserve.
It's starting to get messy - and we're all in.
The HBI Blog is a rotating journal from our staff. Our Blog is a series of messages from the field, insights from our work, and lessons in service.