Whether in the workplace or elsewhere, discouragement can hit from many angles, depleting energy and productivity. To lessen its paralyzing effect, wise believers learn to detect its sources and symptoms. Let’s examine some external causes.
Unresolved disappointments. This could be letdowns caused by our own failed expectations or someone else’s.
Constant criticism. Frequent put-downs can make us think, What’s wrong with me? Yet unless God reveals truth in such comments, learn to let them go.
The feeling that no one’s listening. This can leave us with a sense of rejection.
A sense we aren’t appreciated after doing our best. We at times get so tied to our work that someone’s failure to acknowledge our efforts can feel like a personal rebuff.
Bad working conditions. Many believers enjoy what they do but pick up on coworkers’ cruelty, bitterness, or refusal to recognize their investment of time, energy, or creativity. This can make it extremely difficult to get motivated about going to work each day.
Lacking opportunities to shine. A job that doesn’t make the best use of one’s gifts and abilities can wear a person down. So can tight-fisted management that limits freedom to make innovations.
Oftentimes, it’s the people we see every day who seem to have the most power for causing discouragement in our lives. Read through the list again. Do any of the above scenarios sound familiar? If so, pray for the strength to face these external discouragers with renewed confidence and grace.
Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 18-21