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Loving Monday: Facing Hateful Duties With Grit and Grace

loving_mondaySome tasks feel like we’re being tortured and mocked at the same time. Some of the things we have to do are truly hateful, and we wonder whether we’d rather walk barefoot across hot coals or lie unprotected on a bed of nails.

Postponing these life-sucking responsibilities does little more than prolong the anticipated pain without eliminating the impending eventuality.

What is one to do?

I wish I could make a case for procrastination. I am certainly an expert.

I wish I could make a case for blaming management. They certainly excel at mandating waste.

I wish I could make a case for a positive attitude. It would be so simple if we could change reality by mere force of will.

The fact is that our jobs, all jobs, have nasty components to them.

How to face those nasty components with grit and grace becomes the issue.

One tact might be to turn them into a personal challenge or contest. Create a race against yourself for fastest time getting through a particular task.

Another strategy might be to use humor to keep yourself moving forward. Exaggerate the situation by shouting, “I LOVE MY JOB!” (either out loud or to yourself depending on what’s appropriate) while cleaning the restroom, debugging poorly written computer code, or negotiating a new labor contract. (Apologies to those who’s favorite things to do just ended up on my list of least favorite things to do.)

Finally and ultimately, see if there is a way to innovate your way to a more effective and more meaningful means to achieving the same if not a better outcome.

In effect, your dissatisfaction becomes a catalyst for improvement. Instead of your hateful duties feeling like so much salt being rubbed in an open wound, they can be the prods that provoke you to experiment with creative alternatives.

Instead of hoping passively for something to change in your job or circumstances, you participate in creating your own job satisfaction.

How’s that for a reason to face your hateful duties with grit and grace?!

On your side,

– Karl Edwards

Loving Monday is a weekly column designed to encourage us to step into our weeks with an intention to show up authentically, engage fully, and choose to make it a good week for ourselves. Explore past columns here.

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