Why I love Leslie Knope

Leslie Knope is probably the best character in the history of comedy and humankind! Kidding, but that’s probably how she’d describe her favorite character, with passion bordering idolatry.

I came to know Leslie Knope during my second maternity leave. After all the helping hands and train meals stopped coming I turned to Netflix for company and found the jewel called Parks and Rec. Since then, I have watched the entire show 2 or 3 times and often turn to it when I need background noise while cleaning or thinking.

It was during a recent thinking day that it hit me, I love Leslie Knope! I love her stubborn passion, I love her determination, I love her pioneering spirit, I love the goodness she sees in people, I love her relentlessness, I love how much fight she has in her. I want to be like Leslie Knope.

There have been times in my career when I have been there; hyper focused, uber motivated, super energized, unshakable, unmovable, so committed to a dream and a vision, I can hardly sleep. Those are my Leslie Knope times. My passion is infectious and I can sell ice to an eskimo. I am on top of my game and on top of the world.

Then there are times when things go dark; my compass finds no north, I feel adrift and question the meaning of everything I do. I am sure this is true for many fields. In my world one day I am bridging gaps and coming up with award-worthy ideas; the next day I am a lone fighter defending a logo. How consequential can that be?

While sitting in that funky place Leslie reminded me of 3 important truths in my life:

  1. If I seem too passionate, it’s because I care
  2. If I come on too strong, it’s because I feel strongly
  3. And if I push too hard, it’s because things aren’t moving fast enough

I have to stop apologizing to myself for my passion and the frustration that comes with it. And to quote Leslie one last time: “I’m big enough to admit that I am often inspired by myself.”

Have a fantastic weekend!


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