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How not to feel bad about doing dirty work?

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Sometimes in our lives,
we have to do dirty work for others,
cleaning the mess that others have made.
How not to feel bad about doing dirty work?

Once, S was sharing with me that her tenant used their common toilet and left stains of shit near the toilet seat.
S had to use her hand and toilet papers to clean the toilet bowl.
S told me that if she complains to her tenant,
she may lost her rental income.
S shared that she just reframed her perspective that cleaning the toilet bowl without bad feeling means securing the rental income to support her family living.
S can also pray that a better tenant,
who is willing to pay more and practising more personal hygiene will come in the future.

Currently I am living in Singapore.
Here, I have encountered a number of elderly (about my parents’ age or older) works as janitors / toilet cleaners.
Although the public toilet condition in Singapore is much better than in China in general,
sometimes I encounter dirty toilet cubicle due to previous inconsiderate user.
It is easy for me to move on and go for a cleaner toilet cubicle or go to toilet at other levels.
However, these elderly cleaners have to clean them, e.g. removing stains of shit left by inconsiderate users.
Without these cleaners, we will not have clean toilet; they are really our heroes and heroines!

Then, I think of main motivators of why people choose or end up with (if they have not other choice) a particular job.
Quite often, money is an issue, although not always the issue.
To people who have no money,
they have less choice on what work they can do.
Sometimes, people find satisfaction from doing a job that others may dislike.

Chip Conley illustrates a story of Vivian Van Quach who came to San Francisco from Vietnam in 1987.
She has been working as a main in an inner-city motel in San Francisco owned by him.
According to Chip,
Vivian had sort of a joie de vivre (a French term for the joy of life) in how she did her work.
Although Vivian did not find joy in cleaning toilet,
Vivian has formed the emotional connection that she has built with her fellow employees and the motel’s guests.
Vivian is inspired to take care of people who are far away from home, as she herself is far away from home.

The story sounds like we should try our best to discover goodness in every job, including a mundane one.
When we seek, we will find.
When we seek joy, we will find joy.

However, to some people,
after working some time at a particular job,
they seek a room to grow.
People’s need varies from survival, success, to transformation.
We need meaning in our life.
If one wants to change a job / undertake a new career,
it is important to be educated and skilled for the next job / career.
Preparation matters.
While you are preparing,
affirm the followings:
1. I am grateful for my current position / job that gives me an income.
2. I am grateful for the environment of my jobs (the bosses / the colleagues / the food court / the toilets).
3. I am aware that my current job is only a stepping stone on my pathway of life to contribute to this world through my work.
4. I am happily releasing my current job to the next person who will be delighted to have it.
5. There are people out there who are looking for what I can offer (my skills, my service) and the universe will match us.

If you find the above post useful to you, please kindly donate to support me.
All the best!

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Written by blueroselady

July 31, 2013 at 2:29 pm

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