There is a book out now called "Girl, wash your face". Honestly, I have no clue what it's about except for that fact that everyone in my Instagram is posting about it. Every time I see a post, I actually think of a totally unrelated statement from my parents... (and can hear them saying this in my head_
Girl, get your work clothes on.
Waking up the morning, getting home from school, right after church, you name it-- It was time for our work clothes. For farm families, there is always an animal or plant to care for, it seems. We had show animals like pigs, goats, and sheep so there was ALWAYS a little diva of an animal named Fluffy or Rosie that needed a bath, special skin oil, or a portion of their curated meal provided. Seriously. See why I said divas? But sometimes the agenda included a calf needing to be pulled, a neighbors driveway needing to be cleared of the snow, or hay to be hauled in the hot sun.
When we put on our boots and work clothes, we were not only prepared for the day ahead practically but our minds were, as well. I knew my life was not about sitting around waiting for someone else to do the job. My Dad told me so a couple of times, too. (Ha-- see also Farmer Joe's form of grounding children. Brillant.)
Many of us don't wear boots, jeans, and t-shirts with pockets to work. And many of us do. No matter what we wear to work, young professionals can visualize the clothing and footwear as all work clothes. And I mean REAL work clothes. Let's not be afraid to literally get our hands dirty. Getting dressed in the morning, do we put on clothes with full intent to do some work? I wonder what my Dad would define as work and should probably ask him but I imagine it would go something like...
When you might not want to do something and you do it any way. And you might sweat or get dirty doing it.
I once heard a Chick Fil A Executive speak at an event and share that when doing visits at their stores, the first thing the E-Suite team does when arriving in the parking lot is get out and pick up trash. I imagine they are all professionally dressed. But these folks view their clothing as true work attire.
I often heard this growing up- "When you do a job you love, you never work a day in your life." The intent is good but the phrase in and of itself can leave many young professionals questioning if their jobs are worth it because sometimes they do have to umm... work. I'm assuming the Exec. team of Chick Fil A wouldn't say that picking up trash at locations is the most exciting, life-giving part of their days. And sometimes, some knucklehead leaves chewing gum on the ground that he/she just picked up. Not glamorous. But it needs to be done and it is our job to do so.
I think there is an element of work as young professionals where we must learn to delegate and ask that question of-- should I be the one doing this? But our generation in the marketplace has been fed an incorrect version of this. We can love our jobs and it can feel like work-- both of those at the same time. Putting on the proper work clothes can help us frame this up better each day.
When we show up with literal and figurative work boots and work clothes, it's our job. And we're ready to do it.