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Your Life’s Work Is Your Gift To Society

“Many people in our society aren’t working; thank goodness they still have their jobs.”
— Unknown

I find the above quote humorous and relevant today, as it was when I first heard it more than twenty-five years ago. It is sad that so many in the workforce are holding down jobs they don’t enjoy doing.

Three possible reasons people stay with jobs they don’t enjoy doing are,

1. Because risk terrifies them.

It’s a risk to go somewhere else-- “What if it’s even worse?” It’s a risk to try something new. It’s a risk to leave wherever you are and go somewhere else.

2. Because learning something new is hard.

It’s so sad and yet so true. Most people don’t leave their jobs simply because the thought of having to learn a new process, a new skill set, a new anything is terrifying and exhausting to them. What a sad way to live.

3. Because they love “the golden handcuffs”.

One of the greatest double-edged swords of high paying corporate America is what’s called “living with golden handcuffs.” Your salary is so good, your benefits are so good, your retirement plan is so good, everything is so good that you’re willing to sit in a cubicle hating your life for 8 hours a day simply because, on paper, you’re “living the life. (See end notes for the other seven reasons) (1)

A Job and Your Life’s Work – There is a Difference

Dr. Myles Munroe said, “Your job is what they trained you to do; your work is what you were born to do. Your job is your skill, which they can fire you from at any time. But your work is your gift; no one can take that from you.”

In thinking of your work, I believe you should think of your purpose. People who are unemployed are out of a job; unemployment has nothing to do with their purpose. Everyone is designed to fulfill a unique purpose; it’s an area of giftedness that makes their work and life meaningful.

It is the areas of your giftedness that sets you apart. When functioning in your gifts and talents, you’ll always be more motivated and productive, and your work will always be of a higher quality.

Your purpose will naturally add value to those around you; it is what the pursuit of significance is all about; none of us lives life in a vacuum; we are designed to interact and be of value to the world around us. Functioning within our areas of giftedness will always provide the drive behind wanting to achieve more.

In Closing, John C. Maxwell, speaking of significance, writes, “We all have a longing to be significant, to make a contribution, to be a part of something noble and purposeful. But know this: you don’t have to be a certain age, have a lot of money, or be powerful or famous to make a real difference.”

End Notes

9 Sad Reasons People Stay in Jobs They Don’t Like (Even though they talk about Leaving) by Nicolas Cole


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