Subscribe to newsletter

Subscribe to newsletter

* You will receive the latest articles from The Busy Lady

Business & Careers

How to improve your work ethic 

I once heard the quote “work keeps a man honest” said by a farmer to his son. If one takes a look at just how many people work instead of living on a trust, it stands to reason there should be a lot more honest people out there.

The truth is it takes an incredible strength to do the same tasks day in and out, to go to the same place for the majority of each day’s waking hours, and maintain a zest and fervor for the workplace. Sometimes it’s just easier to do as little work for as much gain, to sink into the repetitive boredom of your environment and watch each gradual tick of the clock as the day passes by. Update your Facebook status, hit the send/receive button every three minutes, and the refresh button on Twitter every 6 seconds.

On average, we spend around eight hours a day at our places of work. This is more than half of estimated waking hours during the week, and aside from being asleep, we each spend more time at work than we do at any other place, including home.

“Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don’t turn up at all.” – Sam Ewing

It’s not a bad time to grasp how important a person’s working environment is to basic health and mental well-being. We spend so much time at the office and it’s easy to become bored with your job, to lose focus of what you wanted to achieve when you started. A person’s self-worth can be largely attributed to work performance. There is nothing like the boost of a performance bonus or an accolade in your name to heighten self-esteem and confidence.

Around the 16th century, Martin Luther spearheaded a religious movement that saw honesty as its most basic premise. It focused on how to lead a good, whole and fulfilling life by virtue, morality and sincerity. The Protestants saw work as good and honest, and this resulted in a global worldview called the Protestant Work Ethic, based on the following principles:

  • People cannot be idle. Since work is inherently good, people must use their available time to do this.
  • A person is not entitled to anything. What you have and what you use must be earned.
  • People should not use, consume or waste more than what is necessary to satisfy basic needs. Saving is important.
  • A person must consistently improve upon and better their skills.

Sounds like an honest way to work. It emphasizes the idea that we are actually extremely lucky to have work in the first place, of a way to earn for ourselves and provide for the lifestyles we have chosen for on our own, instead of being told how to live. We enjoy unbelievable freedoms in this day and age compared to past periods.

People with a good work ethic have a sense of duty in the workplace. They recognise and meet the obligations set forth for them by the workplace while also striving to go above and beyond – doing things that aren’t written in the contract but still needs to be done. It’s about taking control of your environment, working for it and letting it work for you. If you make promises, keep them. Be aware of your personal responsibility to your workplace: It has purchased your skills – the least you can do is give them to the best of your ability.

Related posts