As a young lady entered my print shop, she took in a deep breath and declared, “I love the smell of fresh ink.” Striking up a conversation while we waited for her job to finish, I told her, “I must be used to the smell because I didn’t notice it, but I do enjoy the rhythmic sound of the running printer.” The student’s exuberant reply caught my attention: “Ah yes, it’s the sound of productivity.”
The smell of fresh ink. The sound of productivity. This student’s passion for all things positive actually motivated me.
As a person who likes being busy, I thrive on productivity and it feels good when I see results. So why did I need motivating? Because, sometimes I get lost in the doing and forget the purpose for working in the first place. For example, depending on the volume of jobs I have to do, the rhythmic sound of the printer can become dull or tiresome; I no longer hear the sound of productivity or see the fruit of my labor. I lose sight of the purpose: a helpful and needed service to my customers.
Hearing her say, “It’s the sound of productivity” was a refreshing reminder that at times I need to see things differently. I hadn’t realized my attitude toward labor had become one of necessity more than appreciating the value of my efforts. This student unknowingly encouraged me to look for purpose when routine and fatigue had set in. To take pride in productivity instead of becoming drained by responsibility.
I find the same challenge when working on projects at home. My optimism toward labor at times wanes and I’ll close the door, ignoring what’s behind it. But after a few days break, if a productive attitude doesn’t return, then I need external encouragement to push me forward.
Have you ever felt this way? Have you found your labor to be more tiring than gratifying? Does the positive sound of productivity need to ring afresh in your ears?
Remember, productivity goes so much further than our daily jobs or responsibilities, bringing with it rewards beyond a paycheck and the material realm. A good work ethic strengthens us emotionally and spiritually. It adds value to our lives, enabling us to have a positive affect on those around us.
A number of things can help to improve our attitude toward labor, whether they be smells, sights, sounds, or simply encouraging words. That is, if we willingly pay attention and take action. Breathe deeply, look attentively and listen optimistically. You might just be surprised by how these things can help you to keep your purpose in focus and live a cheerful and productive life.
I’m the author of: Created to be Creative
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