I love to clean! I mean it. To see windows shine, carpets fluff under the vacuum’s bristles, bathroom sinks and tubs sparkle after some elbow grease is so rewarding!
I had the blessing this week of going to do some Spring cleaning for my parents. It’s not that their house was a mess – it wasn’t. I laughingly told them that as I was cleaning and came across a rare dust bunny, I rejoiced! They were few! When my dad retired, he wanted my mom to retire, too, so he took over most of the household chores! He does a fantastic job keeping everything super clean – even as an 85 year-old heart patient!
My sister and I just came to give the whole house a deeper cleaning, doing the things my dad shouldn’t do anymore. For instance, I got up on the kitchen counters and dusted the baskets above the cabinets. But while I was standing up on my perch, I looked down to see my dad standing below me. He asked, “Can I do anything to help?” He was a blessing as he rinsed off some of the silk greenery I handed him, wiped down some cups and saucers on display and things along the backsplash.
Then I turned and saw him with coming in from the garage with a vacuum and a long hose in his hands. He showed me his technique for cleaning out the air vents in the ceiling. We did manage to keep him from doing that job, but it wasn’t easy! It’s not that he didn’t think we could do it, it’s just that he has an incredible work ethic. He can’t stand to be sitting while others are working. That same blood flows through my veins. Why? Because I am his daughter. He taught me. He taught my sisters.
Work and work hard.
Give it your best.
Don’t just do a job lazily – do it well.
Don’t stop until you’re done.
There are lots of people who love to watch work, but hate to engage in it. But you know what? Work was created by God before sin entered the world. It’s not a punishment; it is a gift.
To have things that need to be cleaned – a house, a car, a bedroom, dishes, toys – is a blessing.
To have the energy and strength to clean is a gift from God.
As moms, it is our responsibility to teach our children to have a healthy work ethic. Why?
- It honors God – Whether therefore ye eat or drink or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. I Cor. 10:31
- It also will serve them well as they seek employment.
- You’re preparing them to leave home.
- It is a blessing.
How do we teach a strong work ethic?
- Give your children age-appropriate chores to do. Google it – you’ll find lists for even pre-schoolers.
- Don’t do for your child what they can do for themselves.
- Reward a job well done. Rewards for hard work can create a desire to finish a task. God rewards us – why should we think rewards are evil? Sticker charts, allowance, or a family activity can help a child’s incentive in a task to be done.
- Model a good work ethic before your children. If you bemoan having to wash the dishes or do laundry, they’re going to pick up on your attitude. Why do I love to clean? I learned it from my parents!
- Work together as a family on some projects. Make it a fun family time. Cleaning up the yard this spring, straightening up the garage or basement, picking up trash around the yard can be done together and found that many hands make light work!
- Inspect what you expect. Many times my parents would check my work as a child and require me to go back and redo it until it was done to their specification.
As a parent you might even reap what you sow…your adult children may come home to spring clean for you!! That wouldn’t be so bad, would it?!
Who taught you to work hard?
4 thoughts on “Creating a Healthy Work Ethic in Children”
I’ll bring my brillo pads and scrub your oven when you’re 85. 🙂
Thank you! That will be a happy day!
Such a good reminder to teach our children to be responsible caring adults.