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Work-Life Balance Part 1 - What Is Work?

This is a series on work-life balance. Work-life balance is a trend that encourages us to find a way to keep our selves and our relationships healthy even as we stay productive at work. For the first part, we'll have to establish what Work actually is.

Work. It's something we have to do day after day. We have to get up, freshen up, and haul our butts to a job we may or may not like. We have to toil through 8 straight hours, with an hour's break somewhere, in order to accomplish tasks that would further the goals of the company we work for. At the end of a pay period, we get the compensation for our toil and trouble.

Is this how work looks to you?

A good number of employed individuals feel that work is equated with toil and drudgery. On the other hand, for those who are amply compensated, or in a field that they are happy with, thrive on work. But what is the right way to see it, exactly?

Work was created for man to do, actually. If you're a thinking being, you'd want proof about that statement, right? Well, allow me to give you proof of the truth to that. In Genesis 1:28-30, man was given the command to "be fruitful and multiply." Which means that he should be productive. In the latter verses, he was called to be in dominion of the birds and the bees and all the living creatures that walked the earth.

Being in dominion of could also mean to be responsible for. When a man is given the privilege and authority to be a country's president, its people actually expect him to be responsible for the land. In the Philippines, the president is expected to solve everything; and when things don't work out, everyone blames him and he or she becomes our scapegoat. Everyone from the businessmen to the jeepney drivers take a whack at blaming the poor president. But that's another story. The point is, when somebody rules over or has dominion over something, he is also responsible for that thing. And being responsible for something is actually tantamount to work, right?

Then we also see that in Genesis 2:19-20, man was given a task to name the creatures and to see if there's another creature that would suit him for a helper. So he was given a task; that's already work, right?

But we see that the work that he had to do was something that was pretty rewarding, as we go back to Genesis 1:29-30, because all that he needed was given to him. It was only in Genesis 3:18-19 that work became toil for man.

So, the bottom line of all this is that work is supposed to be productive, enjoyable and rewarding.

We wish. At least, for now.

The reality is, work is often unenjoyable, dreadful, and if we have to deal with painful bosses, clients, and coworkers all the time, it's downright dramarama, melodrama, farce and tragedy all in one.

But if we wanted to take that Biblical promise as Truth, maybe it's time to start perceiving work as that: something that is productive, hopefully fun to do, and rewarding.

While you'd need time and experiential proof to take the Bible's word for it, one thing is sure: it can't hurt to try.

Then another thing is sure: once we start changing our mindsets from the negative to the positive, we find that things actually change. We start enjoying things. We start enjoying life. And we start enjoying work.

So the point for this post is that: Work was created to be enjoyable and rewarding. And if we don't believe that, maybe it's time to start seeing things differently, or to make decisions to change our circumstances.


Here's the list of the whole Work-Life Balance Series:

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