Factors Of Poverty
Apathy or the lack of concern and enthusiasm about something is just one of the five recognized factors of poverty (as a social problem). The other four are ignorance, disease, dishonesty and dependency. While I am not a social policy analyst, at least I do understand what the definition of a factor (of poverty) is and what it isn’t.
A factor (of poverty) is different from a cause. A cause is anything that contributes to the existence of a problem (in this example, poverty), while a factor contributes to the problem (poverty) continuing to happen after its existence.
In this post, I am only — and briefly — going to talk about “Apathy” as a FACTOR of poverty in the Philippines as I had personally witnessed from countless Filipino employees, but most recently, from the staff of KhuaThai Oriental Dining, a Thai casual dining spot at the Festival Supermall in Alabang.
Apathy, The Filipino Working Class & Poverty In The Philippines
I’ve always had a strong compassion for the working class Filipino. I truly long to see them break free from the chains of poverty that hold them back from a more peaceful and happy life. However, please allow me to state my humble observation.
I am truly saddened to realize that many of my brother and sister Pinoys in such a situation in life will probably never achieve anything more for themselves in life not because they have no opportunity to do so, but because they don’t appreciate what they have in their jobs, so they put in just enough effort to get by from paycheck to paycheck and no more. I saw an example of this painful reality yesterday from the staff of KhuaThai Oriental Dining at Festival Supermall in Alabang. All the employees there decided to take their lunch at the same time. While they were at it, no one was attending to customers. I had to approach them at their table to ask if it is their company policy to put the business on hold while they take their break. It took a good couple of minutes before one of them finally and begrudgingly stood up to take my order. They looked at each other first, waiting to see who among them will stand up. Very sad. So really, it’s not just the economy or the government that is to blame for their poverty or lack of progress in life. It’s their whole attitude about their job and their lack of a genuine desire to serve customers, or in any other way do anything more in their job other than the bare minimum effort required to justify their existence at the company.
God save us all from such apathy!
The Evidence Of Gratitude Is In The Attitude
The way I see it, many of my fellow Filipinos who happen to be a part of the working class in the Philippines should learn a thing or two about developing a true sense of gratitude in their core being. Gratitude will most certainly affect their attitude, not just towards work but life in general. I do believe that apathy and a grateful heart cannot coexist within a person. Gratitude is at the heart of all virtues and positive behavior and outlook. A person who maintains a deep sense of gratitude will not focus on and complain about what he doesn’t have or can’t have. Instead, he will always be very thankful about all the things that he does have, regardless of how big or small, and the fact that he has them.
For the Filipino worker, yes, it might be the case that the money he gets to take home can barely make ends meet, but the grateful Filipino worker would rather focus on the fact that he has a job that at least covers the basic expenses. He will constantly remind himself of the possibility that he could just as easily be one of the unemployed Filipinos out there, but the fact that he isn’t is something that he considers to be a huge blessing from God. Therefore, he goes to work everyday with a positive attitude because he values his job, he understands how hard it is to find a job, he wants to keep his job and he wants to excel in his job because he believes in the God who promised that He will abundantly bless those who put in hard and honest work. From that belief springs forth hope and a vision of a better future.
A Final Message To My Fellow Filipinos
Although it is understandable why some of you, my fellow Filipinos, feel apathy towards your job especially when “the rich and powerful” (the bosses) continue to oppress you, keep you down in every way possible (“crab mentality”) and don’t encourage you to grow in any way, to allow yourself to be discouraged and to let it affect your attitude towards work is to yield control of your lives to those very people.
Here are some verses from the Bible and quotes from Zig Ziglar that can motivate you to rid your heart of apathy:
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.”
― Colossians 3:23
“Lazy hands make for poverty, but diligent hands bring wealth.”
― Proverbs 10:4
“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
― Philippians 4:19
“The more you are grateful for what you have the more you will have to be grateful for”
― Zig Ziglar
“Attitude, not Aptitude, determines Altitude.”
― Zig Ziglar
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