How To Turn Any Bad Job Into A Work of Art

April 9, 2013 — 2 Comments

become an artist in your work

Bad jobs stink!  Whether it’s a bad boss, a bad culture, or you are literally shoveling something that smells.  If you are stuck doing something that you hate, it’s tough to spin that any other way.  Whatever the situation though, you might as well make the best of it.  Here’s how…

We don’t use the word “artist” as often as we should.  Normally, it’s used to describe a person that makes paintings or sculptures or something like that.  But truth be told, you can be an artist in anything you do.

According to, one of the definitions of the word artist is, “a person whose work exhibits exceptional skill.”

I can read your mind right now…”If I’m shoveling sh**, how can I be an artist at that?  Why would I want to be?”.

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First off, that stuff you are shoveling may not seem important, but it is.  Trust me, if they are paying you for it, it’s important to someone!  That means people are counting on you to do it, and do it well.  According to Mark Sanborn’s book, Fred Factor:

Attitude colors everything you and I do in life.
A positive attitude works out of opportunity, not obligation.
A positive attitude looks for the best, not the worst, in circumstances.
A positive attitude is “can-do,” not “must-do.”
A positive attitude is hopeful, not pessimistic.

If you decide to spend at least some of your energy on hating what you are doing, then you will most likely give less than your best.  To add insult to injury, this also means you’re letting down the people that are counting on you to shovel it well.

I suggest you take a different approach.  Become the best shovel-er you can possibly be!  Take pride in what you are doing.  Make an extra effort to improve the lives of the people around you.  Become an artist in that your skills are “exceptional”.

Of course, this is a metaphor here, but applying this to any job will automatically make it better.  Maybe not perfect, but at least better!

By focusing on becoming the best possible “xyz-er” that you can, you not only grow personally, you instill a sense of pride in your work, and you will gain respect from you peers.  Here’s another great quote from the book Fred Factor:

Uninspired people rarely do inspired work. Passionate people in an organization are different. They do ordinary things extraordinarily.

Be passionate.  Be your best.  Let hatred and worry go for today and let your work tell a story that can only be considered art.

Question: Do you know any artists?  Have you let them know that you think they are an artist?



  • A great reminder that those who work with passion are more of an artist than we think they are. There’s a few people I know out there who give off that vibe.

    • Hey Joe!

      I respect anyone that pours passion into their work. It’s always inspiring!!

      Thanks for stopping by!!