Today is Part 4 in the series.
Frugality Tip #4
My father taught me to not be scared of hard work. While Daddy enjoyed leisure and fun, he also knew how to work. He once told me that he could push himself to do just about anything that was necessary for him to do. Sometimes I think of that when I’m faced with a job that seems insurmountable. I can accomplish it. I can do it—he taught me that I was capable and that a little hard work never hurt anyone.
I think that my dad learned not to be afraid of work from his father and his father’s family. When I go to the family reunion and look around, the older generation isn’t sitting around—they are doing. No one seems put out or frustrated to be engaged in work. These are ways that they show love and care, by doing for others.
When I learned more about the Montessori method of teaching when our oldest daughter was young, I liked the idea of work as being a way to bring purpose and meaning to a person. Work is a way of being involved in the family unit, to build self esteem, and to learn about the world around you.
Being willing to work, can not only earn you a salary, but it can also save you money. I can pay someone else to clean our house (and goodness knows I sometimes want to!!), but it is much more economical for us to do it. I can pay someone to paint a wall that needs it, but it is a lot cheaper to do it myself. When I think of the idea of work, I often reflect on Proverbs 31—that lady doesn’t have a lazy bone in her body!
- If you are in debt or need to reduce your family expenses, look at services that you have hired out. Try to make an effort to do those tasks yourself. You can include dining out in this category, too!
- One thing that I have noticed with retirees, in particular men, is that there can sometimes be a reduced sense of purpose when leaving the work force. Try volunteering or mentoring as a stopgap.
- Make a game out of work. One of the fondest memories I have is of baling hay with my father, sister, and friends. It was very hard work, but somehow we enjoyed it. Instead of mumbling and complaining about things you have to do, try and find ways to make them more enjoyable. Crank up some music you like or reward yourself with something small when you have done a job.
- Have a job you need done but aren’t able to accomplish? Barter or swap out jobs with a friend.