Have you ever wondered if a belief in God has an effect on your professional life? You might be surprised to find that it actually does--and a positive one at that.
An analysis of data from the Baylor Religion Survey showed that those who feel attached to God are actually more likely to be emotionally committed to their workplaces, as well as more satisfied with their jobs.
But why does religion play such a strong role in job perception? The correlation, as it turns out, is not necessarily direct. Instead, those who have an attachment to God--or another higher power--experience more of a buffer to negative emotions than those who do not. They have elevated levels of optimism, as well as a greater sense that things will ultimately work out in the end. The reduced levels of stress, worry, and anticipation that accompany such trust in the universe ultimately allow for greater enjoyment of their work.
In the study--reported in the Review of Religious Research--860 full or part-time employees or volunteers who reported a belief in God or another higher power were surveyed about the way they felt about their jobs. Some reported that viewing their work as a "mission from God" or even as a way to "serve God" resulted in heightened motivation levels, fewer missed days, and greater overall job satisfaction.
Blake Kent, the lead author of the study from Baylor University in Texas, noted that "Research suggests that workplaces which allow their employees to engage in spiritual activity at work--even if it's just 15 minutes a day of meditation--tend to see boosts in employee satisfaction."
What truly matters in workplace perception and job satisfaction, then, is not necessarily a belief in God itself; instead, what counts is how religion, and other modes of spiritual engagement, affects the individual and his or her way of viewing the world.
Ultimately, it's important to have effective coping mechanisms for dealing with negativity in our lives, whether that be through religion or another means--and trusting that the small bumps in the road won't prevent us from getting to our end goals.