Do your attitudes advance your career?

Do your attitudes toward your career advance your career development? Are your beliefs and behaviors positive, growth-oriented, or negative, constraining? Are they in harmony with the real you, and the 2030s?


Career Advancement Attitudes
Answer “yes” or “no.”

  1. I learn from my mistakes.
  2. I’m too old to compete with younger job applicants.
  3. I know and accept myself.
  4. I prefer the tried and true ways of doing things.
  5. Career success is defined personally.
  6. I do what I “should” rather than what I want.
  7. I welcome criticism as a way to grow.
  8. I won’t consider relocating for an attractive job elsewhere.
  9. My successes are the result of hard work, determination and some ability.
  10. I’ll accept a promotion to a job I don’t like for money or prestige.
  11. My job gives my life meaning and direction.
  12. I’m looking forward to retirement so that I can do what I want.
  13. I’m flexible, self reliant and optimistic.
  14. Career success means having social standing and money to buy the good things.
  15. I’ll take a salary cut to further my career.

Scoring: 1 point for each “yes” to odd numbered statements, and each “no” to even numbered ones. The higher your score, the more you possess positive, growth-oriented career attitudes. If you scored less than 6, consider reevaluating your career attitudes.

Advancing Your Career

Reevaluate your definition of career development. View career growth as a lifelong process of personal and professional development — a continuing quest to maintain harmony between who you are and what you do. Also see career as an opportunity to express yourself and pursue your mission. This gives you a sense of direction, inner peace and joy.

Know yourself and options. Identify your skills, major accomplishments, needs, purpose, and other attributes.  Specify your ideal job; include field or industry, title, tasks, type of company and location.

Don’t choose an occupation because experts predict it will be in demand or to please others. Rather, select alternatives that are in harmony with personal qualities. If you follow your heart instead of “shoulds,” money may be a by-product.

Take charge. Restructure your thinking to that of creating a job rather than applying for one. Reevaluate your career goals periodically. Modify these as you learn more about yourself and your changing environment.  Embrace and grow with change. Be flexible, resilient.

Recognize you do have options. Testing your options may mean tradeoffs, but usually they’re worth the inconvenience.

Continue to learn. Welcome opportunities to discover new technologies and enhance transferable skills, such as computer literacy and verbal communication.

Know how to market yourself (your product) to prospective buyers (employers).

Think out of the box. Develop and use your intuition. Take quiet time dally to tune into your inner self. Meditate on an object, such as a candle flame or mantra. Ask your dreams for direction before going to sleep. Keep a journal. Communicate with nature.

Enhance optimism. Believe good things will happen. Every time you hear your inner voice criticize, stop and think of something positive to say such as “I’m making progress.” Write down things you like about yourself such as “I’m flexible and creative.”  Post the list where you can see it often.

Strengthen courage to risk. Start with small risks in daily activities. Then proceed to more challenging ones. Think of an important risk you’d like to take. What’s the worst thing that would happen if it turned out badly? Where could you get information and support to make the goal less risky?  Break the goal into small steps. When can you take the first step.

Live in the present. Don’t worry about what might happen. Depersonalize failure. View setbacks as learning experiences. Persist.

Believe you’ll attain your goal. Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life offers numerous examples of Questers who are living their goals well into their 90s;

Author Bio
Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, registered psychologist and author of the award-winning, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life and the forthcoming Arouse the Force Within You!  Dr. Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz and University of Alberta, and served as visiting fellow at Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, Palo Alto, and other institutions of higher learning. Dr. Kanchier is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential.


Unemployed? Count These Blessings

Are you unemployed? Has your partner been laid off? Do stories about layoffs worry you?

Don’t despair. Unemployment can be a blessing in disguise. Regardless of age or occupation, people who have positive attitudes, work hard, and take time to reevaluate goals usually come out ahead. They become stronger, wiser, more confident and fully employed.

Weathering unemployment 

1. Understand basic psychological principles. Accept and come to terms with the layoff. Your mind and body need time to digest it. The five emotional stages dismissed employees typically go through are shock and disbelief, fear and anxiety, anger and blame, acceptance and exploration of new possibilities, and commitment to action.

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life by Carole Kanchier elaborates on these stages of unemployment.

2. Express feelings and thoughts. Advise family and friends of the layoff. Their support, information and referral sources are crucial. Discuss responsibilities, values and goals with your partner.

Write about concerns, plans and questions you want to address. Join a support group for people facing the same challenge. Meet regularly to vent anger, generate ideas and receive encouragement and feedback. Consider counseling.

3. Develop a healthy lifestyle. Take care of your mind, body, emotion and spirit. Schedule quiet times to reassess. Practice stress relievers such as exercising and meditating. Eat healthy, get sufficient sleep, reduce alcohol intake. Take time for fun.

Change perceptions. A major stressor is the perception that we can’t cope and don’t have options. Believe you can cope and DO have options.

4. Maintain optimism. Your attitude about yourself determines others’ perceptions. Reinforce the positive in yourself and others. Expect good things. Watch your “self-talk.” When you think or say something that fuels fear, replace it with a positive statement.

5. Develop a routine. Create a work area. Job search is a full-time job. Schedule job search activities like normal business appointments. Keep a log of calls and follow-up actions.

Update your resume using key words listed in job descriptions. Proof read correspondence. Then market yourself.

Leave the house. Attend seminars. Volunteer. You’ll feel good, meet people and be available when opportunities arise.

6. Manage money. Planning and willingness to live on less stretches finances.  Create a budget. Cut expenses. Look at needs rather than wants.

Use coupons, negotiate reduced payments with creditors, comparison shop. Consider a more inexpensive residence. Can family members cut expenses? Work part-time? Think about borrowing.

7. Get a part-time, survival job. Work as a sales clerk or waiter to bring money in. Register with temp agencies.

8. Know what you want. Identify your purpose and the skills, needs and other qualities you want met in your job. Explore compatible options. Clarify your goal and develop an action plan.

Don’t select a job because it’s in demand. It’s difficult to maintain enthusiasm when you’re not excited about positions.

9. Network. Join alumni or civic groups. Attend career fairs, trade shows and professional meetings. Identify people who can connect you with organizational decision makers. Maintain contact with references. Show appreciation for assistance.

10. Use varied search strategies. Don’t passively respond to ads listed in your field. Peruse ads in many fields. Management positions are often listed in construction, retail or education.

Look for hidden leads. Newspaper or television stories describing new products may suggest positions with new  or expanding companies.  Try executive recruiting firms. Consider relocating.

Contact company hiring managers. Request and prepare for interviews. Follow-up contacts. If nobody responds, call or email again. Don’t take rejection personally.

11. Develop luck-facilitating attitudes and strategies.  Luck is being prepared when opportunities arise. Become open to new experiences.  Challenge conventional beliefs. Recognize and seize opportunities.

Don’t fear mistakes. Ask: “What’s the worst that could happen?” Decide whether you could live with the worst scenario or take steps to reduce the chance of it happening. Instead of worrying about failure, think about opportunities you’ll miss if you don’t try!

12. Manage fear. Identify worrisome issues. Minimize these using appropriate information and resources. Live in the present. Don’t worry about what might happen.

13. Practice imagery daily. Imagine yourself living your goal today. See yourself performing your goal while in a relaxed state. Experience it. Notice how it feels, smells, sounds.

View unemployment as an opportunity to revitalize your career. Believe you’re beginning a wonderful new chapter in your life.

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, by Carole Kanchier, offers additional strategies for managing unemployment and starting a wonderful new chapter in your life career.

Telephone Communication Skills Crucial for Career Success

The telephone is the most common business tool and its proper use is essential for career advancement.

Talking with a potential client, customer or colleague on the phone can sometimes be challenging. Without seeing an individual’s face, messages can become muddled and meanings misinterpreted.

To strengthen telephone communication skills, ace the following:

Make a great first impression

Show the caller you’re helpful, confident, competent.

When you answer the phone, smile as you greet the person on the other end of the line.  A smile creates positive energy which translates to the person on the other end.

Speak briskly but pronounce words clearly. When you talk fast, you may sound hurried or excited, and are difficult to understand. When you speak too slowly, you may sound tired, lazy or uninterested.

Strive for an energy level that matches your normal conversation. A soft voice suggests shyness or uncertainty; a loud voice implies anger or worry. Be alert to your caller’s needs. If he’s having trouble hearing, speak louder, more slowly.

Control your rate of speech and pitch. The average individual speaks at a pace of 130 to 150 words per minute. Try to match this rate while on the phone.

Keep your voice pitch moderate. A high pitch connotes youth and may fail to suggest an authoritative image. A low pitch may sound harsh.  Find a middle ground, and vary your inflection to ensure you sound natural, interested. A monotone sounds boring, unenthusiastic.

Use the person’s name

As soon as you receive a caller or customer’s name, write it down. This will help you remember the person’s name, and will personalize the call for you.

Include it naturally throughout the conversation. Don’t be afraid to ask them for the proper pronunciation. Most customers will appreciate this gesture.  Get the spelling correct, too. Callers will value the personal touch you provide with a name

Be genuine

Avoid scripted greetings as most sound artificial, inauthentic.

When you answer the phone include the company’s name, the department, your name, and offer your assistance by giving the caller requested information. This shows you’re a professional ready and willing to be of assistance.

Provide the person with honest answers. Use positive words to ensure a pleasing exchange.  Avoid phrases such as “I don’t know,” or “I can’t do that,”  State what you can do to help, and specify how long a hypothetical task may take.

Be courteous, respectful

Always say hello and identify yourself. Ask how you can help. Use courtesy words, “Thank you for waiting.”  If you need to put the caller on hold, ask, and wait for an answer. If you need to phone back, indicate when you’ll call.

End the call positively

Ensure the caller understands the information you passed along before hanging up. Summarize your conversation. Ask the person, “Is there any other information I can give you?” Answer any final questions he or she may have to ensure complete comprehension and satisfaction. Also, provide any information that the caller might need in the future. If the person needs to call back, share optimal contact times and with whom he or she should speak.

When all of necessary information has been shared, finish the call in a friendly manner. Say, “Have a nice day” or, “It was nice talking with you.” Let the customer know you are willing to assist anytime.

Let the caller hang up first. This gives the person control of the ending as well as an opportunity to ask further questions.

To ensure mastery of telephone communication skills, review the following periodically.

Effective telephone communication skills

When making calls:

  • State your message briefly and clearly
  • Leave your name, organization and phone number, repeating these twice, slowly and clearly
  • Give the full name of the person for whom you’re leaving the message
  • State the date and time of the call
  • State whether you’ll call back or you’d like the other person to call
  • Ask for a return call at a time you’ll be available

When receiving calls:

  • Identify yourself
  • Use courtesies such as “Please hold while I complete another call
  • Offer to take messages when you’re answering for someone
  • Repeat the caller’s name and number to make sure they’re correct
  • Speak in a professional manner
  • Does your answering machine have a pleasant, professional and courteous message? Leave a good impression

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, by Carole Kanchier, offers additional strategies for succeeding in your life career.

Is It Too Much For You To Go To Work?
Are you wondering whether you should make changes in your career – and life? Are you satisfied with your job? Responding “yes” or “no” to the following questions, may help you get a clearer picture of whether you should consider a job shift.

1. Is your body sending you messages? Do you have lingering colds? Trouble getting out of bed on a work day?
2. Are you constantly thinking, “I can hardly wait till Friday?” Do you often watch the clock?
3. Do you frequently daydream on the job?
4. Do you call in sick even when you’re not?
5. Do you arrive late for work often?
6. Have your performance and productivity slipped?
7. Do you have many disagreements with colleagues or superiors?
8. Do you feel withdrawn at work?
9. Does the prospect of spending a whole day at work get you down?
10. Will leaving the organization enable you to achieve your career dreams more quickly?
11. Is your work damaging your self confidence? Your health? Your personal and family life? Other life facets?

Scoring: Two or more “yes” answers suggest you are dissatisfied. The more times you said “yes,” the more dissatisfied you seem to be.

To nurture your career, act
If you’re convinced a job move is in order, go for it! Here’s some advice:

  • Define and overcome barriers. Describe any blocks that are preventing you from making a move. Examples could be fear of losing a secure income, pension or other benefits; fear that you will lose power, prestige; fear of having to live up to an image, making a mistake, or being embarrassed; not knowing where to begin a new job search; or guilt that change may interfere with relationships.
  • Know you have many exciting options. These include changing departments in the same organization, shifting employers, changing occupational fields, becoming self employed, taking a sabbatical or going back to school for upgrading or retraining.
  • Investigate alternatives. Research and planning will reduce risk. For example, if you want to return to school or start your own business, and fear reduced income, you can learn to live on less, work part-time while pursing your goal and borrow money from family or the bank.
  • Avoid guilt. Don’t worry about letting everyone down, or what your colleagues may think.
  • Avoid idealizing your former position. Don’t mourn a job that is no longer meeting your needs.
  • Don’t stay in a job you dislike because of security. Security is wishful thinking today. But developing positive attitudes, believing in yourself, working hard, and developing the will to risk will enable you to prevail.
  • Realize that change involves tradeoffs. Change may involve some temporary personal or financial sacrifices. But most Questers agree that in the long term, their gains far outweigh their losses. Greater satisfaction, independence, flexibility and control over personal and work lives are some benefits acquired.
  • Listen to your self. Don’t base your self-respect on what other’s think. Listening to your feelings will help you identify what you really want. If you make the move that’s right for you, you will succeed. Better relationships with family and friends are often added benefits.
  • Don’t make excuses. Be honest. If you feel stagnant, deciding to stay can be as traumatic as moving. Staying in a job with no hope of advancement or satisfaction is self defeating and risky. Stress, illness, and loss of enthusiasm, self-confidence and employability may result.
  • Don’t be afraid to fail. Setbacks are learning experiences. Successful changers eliminate much failure by planning and persisting. If they do fail – and they often initially do – Do they say, “I’ve done my best. I’m only human.” Then they figure out what went wrong, modify their plans, and try again.

Dare to change
Keep the following in mind as you pursue your goal:

  • State what you really want, not what others think you should have.
  • Write a paragraph outlining why you want it.
  • Affirm how your goal will benefit yourself and others.
  • Be prepared to make tradeoffs such as living on less while you return to school.
  • Work hard.
  • Believe you will attain your goal.
  • Have a support group or positive people with whom to associate.
  • Be patient as you work toward you goal.

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, by Dr. Carole Kanchier, offers additional suggestions for enjoying your life work.



Sharpening Job Interview Skills

Do you ace job interviews? Or do you need more practice presenting yourself?

It’s crucial to make a great impression at your job interview. The interview usually determines whether you will receive a job offer.

Interviews are a two way street. Both you and the employer are evaluating each other. You want to convince the employer you’re the best candidate for the position, and get information to evaluate the company. The employer wants to determine your qualifications and motivation, whether you’ll fit into the company’s culture, and your cost effectiveness.

The Mock Interview
To sharpen your interview skills, practice a mock interview with two friends. Ask one to be the interviewer, and the second to be the observer who will evaluate your performance using the following criteria:

First Impression
1. Is well groomed and appropriately dressed.
2. Presents resume targeted to position.
3. Demonstrates optimism and energy.
4. Talks clearly and distinctly.

Body Language
5. Appears relaxed, poised.
6. Has good posture.
7. Leans forward.
8. Maintains eye contact.
9. Maintains open position (arms not crossed, etc.)

10. Communicates job objective.
11. Expresses why job is wanted.
12. Demonstrates skills relative to job sought.
13. Relates past accomplishments to job skills.
14. Demonstrates interest and enthusiasm for job.
15. Answers questions with confidence.
16. Turns weaknesses into strengths.
17. Asks questions about the job and organization.
18. Avoids “yes” or no” responses.

19. Asks when interviewer will make contact regarding the hiring decision.
20. Thanks interviewer by name for the experience.

Scoring: Two points for demonstrating excellent or very good behaviors, and one for fair behaviors on each of the 20 given criteria:
36 – 40: You’re hired!
30 – 35: You may get the job.
20 – 29: You need more interview practice.
11 – 19: You need much more practice.
0 – 10: You need to do more work on all aspects of career planning and job search.

Preparation is Key
Preparation is crucial for successful interviews. Before the interview, research the organization and the job. Call any contacts to get an insider’s perspective. Be conversant with the company’s products and services, and recent developments in the industry. Prepare questions to ask and review those that may be asked of you. Then plan how to manage and structure the interview to your advantage.

Be ready to discuss your background and to state the contribution you can make. Outline your top five selling points. Practice your delivery. Use a tape reorder or video, role-play with a friend, or get feedback from a counselor. Know the complete names and correct titles of all interviewers. Program your mind for success. Visualize yourself performing well.

Dress professionally. Take a note pad, copies of your updated resume targeted to the job, and written lists of questions and references. Radiate energy, enthusiasm and optimism. Confidently offer examples of how you’ll contribute to the company.

Be genuine; smile when appropriate. Listen carefully and answer all questions directly. If you’re unsure, ask for clarification before responding. Get information to evaluate the position by asking questions.

Don’t share negative comments about former employers. Never negotiate a salary until you’ve been offered the job. If pressed, speak in terms of a pay range based on the going salary in your field. Close the interview effectively by emphasizing your key skills and why you should be hired. Ask for a time and date to call back to learn of your status. Never turn down a job offer on the spot.

Send a thank you note within 48 hours after the interview.  Follow up with a phone call if you haven’t been notified within a month.

Before accepting any position, get all the facts. Note your gut reactions to the people and work environment. Get the offer confirmed in writing once you and the employer have reached an agreement on all aspects of the job.

Don’t take rejection personally. If you don’t get the position, ask for feedback on your qualifications and interview performance.

Practice makes perfect. You can enhance your job interview skills. Best wishes.

Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, by Carole Kanchier, offers additional tips for acing interviews:


 Embrace Change – Change Is the Only Certainty Today

 Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life Shows How

Fall is here and many are wondering what to do with their lives. Fall, a season of transformations, may be the time to dare yourself to change, welcome new opportunities!

I would love to share my experiences on the career quest with you. Questers Dare to Change answers many questions adults have related to lifelong career/personal growth.

  • Strengthen “Quester” traits to succeed
  • Recognize and become what you were born to be
  • Handle anger at work
  • Test your job satisfaction
  • Grow in your current job
  • Look at retirement in new ways
  • Strengthen resilience, authenticity, creativity, and critical thinking
  • Use mind power
  • Manage time like the Questers
  • Work with purpose
  • Understand how job dissatisfaction affects health and productivity
  • Determine whether you’re ready for a career shift
  • Overcome fear of failure
  • Use your gut for decision making
  • Identify your fit in the career and life cycles
  • Protect yourself from layoffs
  • Meet people who have made dramatic career shifts
  • Complete self-scoring quizzes, and find your truth
  • … And so much more

Additional information is on my web site: Paperback and Kindle versions of Questers may be ordered from amazon: Please request a complementary PDF edition of Questers.

I am available for consultations and keynotes; Contact:

Author Bio

Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, registered psychologist and author of the award-winning, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life and the forthcoming Arouse the Force Within You!  Dr. Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz and University of Alberta, and served as visiting fellow at Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, Palo Alto, and other institutions of higher learning. Dr. Kanchier is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential.













are you engaged in your work

Fall is approaching and many are wondering what to do with their lives. Fall, a season of transformations, may be the time to reassess life career goals, welcome new opportunities!

Current research suggest (by Aon, a global professional consulting firm, and Gallup) forces such as favorable economic conditions and greater workforce stability may be causing an all- time high in employee engagement.

Job engagement refers to the psychological and emotional extent to which people participate in their work, profession and organization. Top performers, who are engaged in their work, generally have high levels of job involvement. Studies show high job involvement contributes to high employee job satisfaction, morale and productivity. It’s also related to workers’ attainment of personal and professional goals.

Do you identify closely with your job? Are your moods and feelings affected by your work? Are you involved in your job?

Job Engagement Quiz
Answer yes or no.
1. I’m an effective team contributor.
2. I’ll stay overtime to finish a task.
3. I feel depressed when I fail at something connected with my job.
4. I dislike the type of work I do on a daily basis.
5. Most friends agree I get my energy from work.
6. I never work weekends.
7. I rarely have input into decisions made in my organization.
8. I do what I can to just get by at work.
9. I don’t feel included in team work and lack energy while at work.
10. I have sufficient resources and support to do a good job.

Scoring: one point for each yes response to statements 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, and 10; and one point for each no response to questions 4, 7, 8, and 9. Add your points. The higher your score, the more engaged you are in your work.

8 or higher. You seem to be very involved in your work, probably enjoy it, and are good at it. You may be active in implementing new ideas and bring value to your organization. Your job may be central to your identity. You generally feel good about yourself, are healthy, independent, growth-oriented, and enjoy intrinsic rewards. Your position may satisfy needs and enables you to express your purpose. You may have an infectious enthusiasm about your work that communicates to others. You take your work seriously, and your moods and feelings may be affected by work experiences. You tend to transfer your work engagement to others. But do learn to relax. Make time for fun. Spend quality time with friends and family members, enjoy leisure activities, and find time for yourself.

4 to 7. You seem to be moderately involved in your work and may be reasonably satisfied with it. If you are happy with your work and feel that you lead a balanced life, that’s fine. However, if your job satisfaction is low, consider doing something to improve it. With your superior’s help, restructure your position so that you can fulfill your needs and use desired skills. If it’s not possible to develop challenges or change your current position—and sometimes it isn’t, explore other options.

3 or lower. Your score suggests you are not even slightly involved in your work. You probably don’t feel included within the team and may also have low job satisfaction. Perhaps other aspects of your life are more interesting to you. Good! But low job involvement, which includes a lack of interest and enthusiasm, may spill over to other life components. It may even lead to poor health. If you really dislike your position, do something about it. Explore ways to restructure your job to make it more satisfying. Discuss your thoughts, feelings and job options within the organization with your supervisor. Explore other work and educational options or consider time out.

Strengthening Engagement

  • Clarify purpose. Identify themes: absorbing childhood activities, proud accomplishments, when you’re most energized, a favorite Halloween costume.
  • Be authentic. Do what’s right for you. Ensure actions are consistent with thoughts and feeling. Set goals in harmony with your purpose.
  • Build confidence. Focus on the positive. Avoid, “I can’t.”  Don’t compare yourself with others. Judge accomplishments against personal standards and strive for excellence.
  • Continue to learn. Read, take courses, volunteer. Challenge conventional beliefs. Recognize and seize opportunities. Find better ways to do things. Try! Place no limitations on yourself.
  • Strengthen courage to risk. Review three successful risks taken. Note what made these successful. Identify perceived barriers for taking another risk and explore ways to overcome these.
  • Manage fear. Identify worrisome issues. Minimize these using appropriate information and resources. Live in the present. Let go of “attachments.” Form a support system.
  • Restructure job to provide desired perks.
  • Move to a position that offers more challenge, autonomy.
  • Live a healthy, balanced life.

Take charge of your life. Become happily engaged at work! Learn from the Questers in Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life

Dr. Carole Kanchier, career and personal growth expert, and author of Questers, shows how to succeed in changing times:



Winston Churchill quote: Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel...

A female CNN journalist heard about a very old Jewish man who had been going to the Western Wall to pray, twice a day, every day, for a long, long time.So she went to check it out. She went to the Western Wall and there he was, walking slowly up to the holy site.  She watched him pray and after about 45 minutes, when he turned to leave, using a cane and moving very slowly, she approached him for an interview.
“Pardon me, sir, I’m Rebecca Smith from CNN. What’s your name?”
“Morris Feinberg,” he replied.

“Sir, how long have you been coming to the Western Wall and praying?” 

“For about 60 years.”

“60 years! That’s amazing! What do you pray for?”
“I pray for peace between the Christians, Jews, and the Muslims.””I pray for all the wars and all the hatred to stop.””I pray for all our children to grow up safely as responsible adults and to love their fellow man.””I pray that politicians tell us the truth and put the interests of the people ahead of their own interests.”And finally “I pray that everyone will be happy”.
“How do you feel after doing this for 60 years?”
“Like I’m talking to a Brick wall!


What Does Labor Day Mean to You
For most people, Labor Day means two things: a day off and a chance to say goodbye to the summer. But why is it called Labor Day?