Feel Good Friday: A Labor Day Reflection

Feel Good Friday: A Labor Day Reflection

Feel Good Friday is a regular series to give you a smile, a chuckle, or a nugget of wisdom to get your weekend off on the right foot!

All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence. - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In honor of the upcoming Labor Day holiday in the U.S., I’ve been reflecting on the fact that being free and able to work—without physical limitations or cultural restrictions on my choice of field, and with the full assurance of a reasonable wage—is a privilege.

It’s a fact that’s easy to forget amidst Monday morning grumblings or post-work venting sessions.

I love this quote from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. not only because it reminds me not to take my work for granted, but also because it encourages me to do all my work to the best of my ability—with “painstaking excellence.” Because it matters. Even when it feels like it doesn’t. Especially when it feels like it doesn’t.

Here’s the full quote:

“If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as a Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, ‘Here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.’ No work is insignificant. All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.”

No work is insignificant; no labor is in vain. That’s certainly something to celebrate.

Do you ever get caught up in moaning and grumbling about your job? 

What are your plans for the Labor Day weekend?

9 responses to “Feel Good Friday: A Labor Day Reflection”

  1. When I *used* work full-time, I often found myself grumbling about work…until I became a manager. Suddenly I’d found my calling: helping other people do the best at their jobs. I loved mentoring my team members. That was a world ago (it’s been three years) now, but at least I know I found the kind of work that makes me happy, should I ever go back to the corporate world!

  2. What a BEAUTIFUL quote. I don’t grumble about my job these days but that’s after a decade of grumbling..
    We have a busy weekend! House guests, a huge party, and all three sets of grandparents. What a whirlwind!

  3. What a great quote. Yes, is definitely a privilege. Especially when we think about what’s going on in other places around the world. I certainly grumble about being a SAHM sometimes, but I wouldn’t trade it. And as I work on the launch of my freelance career in the coming weeks, I certainly feel blessed to be able to do so.

  4. I LOVE that quote. It makes me feel better about the work I’m engaged with now, as it is so very different from work I’ve done in the past and work I dreamed I’d do. Indeed, working is a privilege. Hope you had a lovely holiday weekend!

  5. Sounds a lot like what my dad told me when I got first job as a bagger and cart-pusher at a local grocery store when I was 18. He said, “Whatever job you have, do it well.”

    I took that seriously, and continued to apply it to my subsequent academic and professional endeavors. It’s always served me well.

  6. What a fabulous quote Katie. Yes, it is a privilege to work… thank you for the reminder to not take it for granted. Yes, I’m a stay-at-home mom, but that is “work” in and of itself. when Monday rolls around and I lose my parenting partner to the workforce, I need to be thankful he has that job instead of grumbling!

    Thanks for sharing. I hope you had a lovely long weekend.

  7. I don’t remember if I grumbled about my job – I probably did. We had a wonderful Labor Day weekend – I’ll be sharing later in the week!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.