A legend about Alfred the Great, King of the Saxons from 871-899 AD, purports that he used to send his sons out hunting with many dogs who would come back panting and worn from the hard work. Hence, the phrase we still use today: “Dog-tired.” It’s that particular kind of tired that happens when you have exerted and used up your energy.
You may be saying, “Yes, that’s my life every single day!” You work all day on the job and come home and work some more as you raise children, prepare meals, keep up with household chores and attend to volunteer commitments. Or, during these days when many are working from home, you’re swamped with all of it happening at the same time…all day…24/7!
Some days you go through the motions of your daily routine, wondering why you bother going to the same old job doing the same old things. Or you can’t remember why it’s important to prepare meals and wash dishes and laundry day after day. It can feel thankless and futile.
When you find yourself wondering if it’s all worth it, I challenge you to begin thinking of those routine tasks as investing. Remind yourself that you are investing in the people you touch as you hang in there through the long workdays or cultivating and growing a healthy family one day at a time. You and the people you affect each day will make a difference - for good or bad - so your example is powerful.
Building a reputation, a career or a stable life takes time, patience and steadfast commitment to the future result. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich once said, “Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.”
If you feel discouraged, it can be helpful to talk with someone who has “been there.” A successful business professional who started at the bottom will be able to tell you how they kept going and continued investing in their career through recognizing opportunity and working hard. A parent of grown children will be able to share some of the day to day successes and failures that every parent experiences. A young dad once told me, “The days with small children seem really long. But the years are so short – they fly by!”
I can only encourage you to stay faithful to the people, work and opportunities you have, and to keep your eye on the prize of a good reputation on the job or the blessing of kids who love to bring their friends home. You may feel “dog-tired” today, but someday, you’ll realize it was all worth it!
Live, Work and Relate Well!