Frustration in Daily Life, Especially in the Workplace



Dealing with frustration must be done with the proper perspective. Often when a project I was working on for several months was shelved, it would be crushing. All that time that I could have been doing something else, wasted. In my case, I looked to the parable of the hired hand. The hired hands all started work at different times, but each received the same salary. One of them remarked that he felt cheated. Jesus rebuked him, reminding him that the person hiring them was free to pay them as he wished, it was his money to do as he pleased, and the workers accepted it.

In my case, I accepted the terms and conditions of employment. That’s not to say that I can’t decide it doesn’t work for me anymore but if I remain, I accept it. There is an important and often missed exception that goes along with this.

It is common when being employed to not have a bargaining position per se. The only time an equitable agreement is made, is at the beginning of the position. After that, the employer understands they can change it as they see fit with little to no recourse. Most employees will go along and manage. Even if it hurts them emotionally and physically. The employers operate on fallen nature just as much the employees do. To that end, they operate in evil, knowing the leverage of their position and exploiting their workers.

If you can’t bargain in your position but must accept whatever comes down the pipe, it could be said you are forced labor. In any case, accepting this situation and dealing with it personally as a fault of your own, is self-destructive.

In the context of a proper business structure, the buyer of the service and the seller must always be able to remove themselves from the deal, without a sense of “punishment”. If as a client, the client asks you to do something that is outside of what you are willing to perform, either because of a moral reason or maybe it just becomes unworkable financially, then you are free to say that won’t work.

I think this process gone awry is where the idea of a “work ethic” has been perverted. In the context of modern business culture, employer to employee relations, a good work ethic means that an employee is willing to accommodate the employer in any way allowed by law. That is the actual limit an employer will take their employees and, in my experience, frequently even goes beyond that.

In these cases, I think it is important we reevaluate our interpretation of work ethic. It doesn’t mean, accepting anything that comes our way as part of the job. It means doing your job to the best of your ability, with integrity, a commitment to keeping your promises and holding your clients and employer accountable for theirs.

Set boundaries, make your needs and expectations clear from day one. When significant workplace changes occur or client needs change, re-evaluate if the business transaction you are in is still beneficial to you. If the employer or client is unable or unwilling to recognize your boundaries, it is perfectly ok to say no, shake hands and move on.