We’ve been celebrating Labor Day for over a 100 years. The idea of celebrating a “workingman’s holiday” spread with the growth of labor unions. It’s celebrated in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Jamaica, Trinidad, Tobago, the Philippines and maybe even a few other places. There are still a few speeches and parades that commemorate and pay tribute to people that toil to make things, fix things, build things and make sure everything keeps running, but mostly labor day has come to signify the end of summer and a great time to buy furniture and cars.
Like many of our holidays, the significance of the day of honor is lost in the commercial hub-bub and the traffic on the highway and in the skies.
I’m thinking it’s a good time to spend even just a little time reflecting.
For one thing, anyone who has work these days might want to spend a few moments in gratitude. So many are out of work and wishing they had the daily grind of routine and usefulness. A moment of prayer and hope for those people might also be appropriate.
For another thing I’m thinking it’s a good time to look at your work with love.
You heard me, love. What about your job do you love? What about your job can you love? Can you love the customers, the other people you work with, the challenge, the oppotunity, the regular paycheck?
I hear a lot of people these days are trapped in jobs they don’t love and are afraid to move because of the economy. I can understand how that can happen. I’ve been there myself. What I learned to do when I was there was to reframe.
I made the choice to stay where I was and once I realized it was a CHOICE to remain, I began the job of re-focusing my attention on what I could love rather than what I was hating at the time.
It worked. I found opportunities for growth and improvement that I could put my focus on and what I focused on expanded. It made my tenure much more bearable and eventually enjoyable.
The mind is a wonderful thing when you use it to create a better reality for yourself. What can you love about your labor right now? What can you love about your job, your work, your opportunities? Look around and find three things to appreciate, and then seven and then ten. Be mindful of things that matter – as small as they might be.
In celebration of labor day, find a little bit of love in your work. Let it put a smile on your face.
Emotions are contagious – make sure yours are high quality!