The Value of Hard Work
In May of 1940, Winston Churchill stood before the House of Commons and uttered these words: “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat. We have before us an ordeal of the most grievous kind. We have before us many, many months of struggle and suffering.”
Winston Churchill understood that the British people could only survive World War II if they committed to a long, painful struggle for victory. There was no easy way out, but Churchill’s resolve saved Britain and influenced the course of modern European history.
Blood, toil, tears, and sweat. Not words that most of us want to hear. In fact, today’s marketing campaigns strategically avoid words that dredge up thoughts of hard work and/or commitment. Take these three advertisements for example:
Lose 25 Pounds in Just 2 Weeks!
Go From Broke to Rich FAST!
Reduce Debt by 75% NOW!
The common theme? Invest minimal effort, and expect instant results. Unfortunately, the American drive to work hard and actually accomplish something is fast disappearing. I’ve seen it in the classroom, on the basketball court, and even in my own life. Many of us are looking for an easy fix. The best body, the perfect shot, the easy grade. So we cut corners. We cheat. We blame others.
When I was 13 years old, I worked an entire summer to save enough money to buy a 55 gallon aquarium. In retrospect, I can tell you that I should have saved that money for more important things. Yet through the experience I learned a valuable life lesson. If you want something, you have to work for it. If you work hard enough, you just might get it.
This post is a renewed call to hard work.
Choose an overwhelming task. Work hard. Accomplish something.
You won’t be disappointed.
This is the perfect subject to address on a Monday morning before a long week of work. I was in the process of writing out my list of things to do today when I took a second to read your entry. Thanks for the good word.
Is that a picture of me working hard in a field or something?
[…] be overvalued. In a culture that prefers cutting corners and the easiest path to success (see The Value of Hard Work), its nice to be reminded that rewards of perseverence continue to be vastly superior to […]