Today is Labor Day in the United States. That is the day set aside to honor the American working person. Contrary to public opinion, work is not a dirty four-letter word. The personal dignity and self-worth of a person is usually closely related to his or her work. One of the first experiences of becoming an adult is getting a job (or starting your own business) and learning how to “pay your own way” in life. What a great feeling!
Everyone who has something to do each day has learned the pleasure and satisfaction of feeling part of something bigger than themselves. I once heard the statement, “He who is all wrapped up in himself has a mighty small package!” I believe that is true. We all should be part of something that is bigger and more important than ourselves. Knowing that you are helping your fellow man and making the world a better place daily is fundamental to a person’s well-being. I once heard a famous leader say, “Almost all mental illness begins when a person becomes irresponsible and refuses to work!” I do not know if that is true, but that is a scary thought to me.
During the Covid-19 period of time, many people lost their jobs. Their personal identity was so closely related to their line of work that losing their job or their position at work eventually caused them to have a physical, mental, or emotional breakdown. Some serious repercussions occurred as a result of their particular set of circumstances. That was a tragedy, for sure.
I have also heard it said, “Idle time is the devil’s workshop!” That means you are headed for trouble when you have nothing to do. As I look back on my own life and that of many of my friends, having too much “free time” on our hands was more hurtful than helpful. I have also heard discussions that some people are able to make almost as much money by staying at home as they can by going to work. To me, that is a dangerous situation. There is a difference between having a job and continuing to work. I believe work keeps you alert and healthy. I recently saw a sign that read, “Smoking is to cancer as a sedentary lifestyle is to old age.” That is why I stay busy. I will never retire. I will burn out, not rust out! But maybe that is just me!
Since I specialize in the DISC Model of Human Behavior, I thought this Labor Day I would share with you how each of the four different personality styles views work. Of course, we are all a unique blend of all four of these types, so some of the following information might overlap. Here we go:
The “D” type – (Dominant Personality Style) – This person says, “Get it done! What’s next?!” They are naturally hardworking and focused on success. Working to them is a hobby! They work quickly, determinedly, and intensely to get results. If you get in their way – good luck! They do not handle failure very well. They hate losing more than they enjoy winning. They are like cream; they rise to the top of almost any occasion. Their personality style basically prohibits them from working for another person. They prefer a leadership role where they can be the boss. Their blind spot may be supporting other people.
The ”I” type – (Inspiring Personality Style) – This person says, “Who can I work with every day? Is there anyone to talk to while I work? I enjoy people so much I may actually forget the working part of my day!” Working to them is more like a cheerleading event or a pep rally. Together Everyone Achieve More is why a TEAM exists! They are naturally fun-loving and playful. They enjoy working interactively and creatively with other people. They love recognition and being part of a team. They also like being right in the middle of everything, as long as the blame or the buck does not stop with them. Being unpopular or making a hard decision is not what they like. Their blind spot might be learning to stay focused until the end of a project.
The “S” type – (Supportive Personality Style) – This person asks, “How do you want me to do this work? I want to please you, and I love helping other people. I just do not want to be in charge or make anybody do anything!” They are naturally helpful and cooperative. They are a team player who does not need the spotlight. Just doing their best and helping others is what matters most to them. They do not like conflict. “Blessed are the peacemakers” is their way of life. They enjoy working at a steady, even pace. They especially enjoy supporting the entire team. Their blind spot might be knowing how to get started on any project. Procrastination occurs because they do not want anyone to feel they are trying to run over anyone.
The “C” type – (Cautious Personality Style) – This person says, “Plan your work, then work your plan! Get yourself organized and think because the person who knows how to plan and think will eventually have the best lifestyle. It all makes so much sense!” They are naturally focused and do well in almost any academic or structured environment. They enjoy an environment with plenty of details, data, and procedures because that makes them the most comfortable. They work methodically, seriously, and intently. The more sense something makes to them, the better they like it. They do not like being rushed or making mistakes because being right is important to them. Their blind spot might be learning to include other people in their work.
Again, every one of us may utilize some of all four of these work habits. If I had known more about the last one, I would have done better in school. I was too busy daydreaming, playing sports, and trying to look good to my friends than learning about real life. But that was then, and this is now. Gratefully, I have been working on all four of these areas for the last 30 plus years. I have not arrived yet, but things are pretty awesome now!
Please join me on the quest for a successful and purposeful life. Love God, love people, and love what you do each day! As Coach Jones used to say, “Just be a good person and help others along the way!”
Maybe that is what Labor Day is all about!
Your personality style will affect how you view Labor Day!
Have a great week! God bless you!
Dr. Robert A. Rohm