One of the big issues that impacted our recent restructuring at Quakerdale had to do with a lack of employees willing to do the jobs we needed done. I was reading about a survey done with workers hired to do the types of helping jobs Quakerdale hires and the results were interesting.
Tom Woll, a consultant to non profits like Quakerdale, recently interviewed three hundred workers in our field what it would take to stay at their position for two years. (Just two years!) Tom stated that the answers revolved around five issues associated with the work: Stress, discouragement, belonging, purpose and fulfillment.
These were Millennial workers exclusively and all of them had concerns about the work that were very practical. They felt like the work they were doing was beyond their skills and that their training didn’t prepare them for the task. This led them to feeling discouraged and stressed out. These feelings of discouragement followed them home and had a negative impact on their personal lives. Many stated that if they do not feel calm in their work they will leave.
I know we all like to feel encouraged, stress free. We like to feel that we are fully prepared for the task and that those around us show appreciation and give us the feelings of purpose and fulfilment.
Where do feelings of stress, discouragement or belonging, purpose and fulfilment come from?
The last time I checked lasting feelings of contentment and well being don’t come from others. The process of growing and “becomming” demands stress, anxiety, challenge and general discomfort. Then we move to the next level and become the person we can ultimately become. Then we better know our purpose, where we belong and what fulfils us. Have you ever went and listened to a survivor story? Someone who overcame something really terrible? These people know who they are and it is because of the difficulty they experienced.
We as parents, friends or co-workers can model how to overcome hardship and take on challenges because we all have them. We can find contentment in the midst of the trials and challenges of life even if our challenges are not bad enough to put us on the 6 pm news! When we are modeling how to handle these challenges we must allow our kids to experience increasing levels of hardship or challenge when they are young. Kids who face difficulty or challenges experience stress and discouragement. Kids can learn that belonging, purpose and fulfilment come from going through difficult things instead of quitting.
So where are you helping yourself or your children avoid something difficult? Are you actually helping your child grow if you allow them to avoid the problem or fixing it for them?
Today try to take a look at life through the lense of growth and remember good things always require extra effort and they don’t come easy! Then we are better prepared for the next hard thing that always comes!
James chapter one is the place I go when things are hard in my life and I realize I am in a growth opportunity. You see as the old hymn says: “My hope rests in nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.” You see when our happiness is dependent on others or even the circumstances of this world we are surely going to be disappointed. Teaching our children, co-workers or our friends how to find happiness isn’t quitting or avoiding. It has to do with where we put our trust and happiness and how we go about our lives.
I want to share a great song with you with an introduction in a concert. Not only are we expected to extend ourselves as in James chapter one, but then we can also rest easy knowing God will carry our burdens!