Although the word labor seems to suggest tough, physical work that makes you sweat, any type of work, whether physical or mental, can be considered labor.

Labor is usually associated with very hard, physical work, suggesting fatigue and aching muscles. In fact, a woman giving birth is said to be in labor, giving true meaning to the phrase "labor of love." The word can also be used as a verb, as in "He had to labor many years to pay off his debt." That sense of hard work fits in with the Labor Party of some nations, a party generally favored by and supporting the working class.

Definitions of labor
  1. noun
    any piece of work that is undertaken or attempted
    synonyms: project, task, undertaking
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    Manhattan Project
    code name for the secret United States project set up in 1942 to develop atomic bombs for use in World War II
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    breeze, child's play, cinch, duck soup, picnic, piece of cake, pushover, snap, walkover
    any undertaking that is easy to do
    adventure, dangerous undertaking, escapade, risky venture
    a wild and exciting undertaking (not necessarily lawful)
    an undertaking that you have been assigned to do (as by an instructor)
    a project of personal concern to someone
    endeavor, endeavour, enterprise
    a purposeful or industrious undertaking (especially one that requires effort or boldness)
    labor of love, labour of love
    productive work performed voluntarily without material reward or compensation
    endurance contest, marathon
    any long and arduous undertaking
    anything that requires little thought
    a task to be dealt with
    large order, tall order
    a formidable task or requirement
    any venturesome undertaking especially one with an uncertain outcome
    an easy task
    school assignment, schoolwork
    a school task performed by a student to satisfy the teacher
    fraudulent scheme, illegitimate enterprise, racket
    an illegal enterprise (such as extortion or fraud or drug peddling or prostitution) carried on for profit
    joint venture
    a venture by a partnership or conglomerate designed to share risk or expertise
    a venture at something new or different
    forlorn hope
    a hopeless or desperate enterprise
    writing assignment, written assignment
    an assignment to write something
    campaign, cause, crusade, drive, effort, movement
    a series of actions advancing a principle or tending toward a particular end
    sally, sallying forth
    a venture off the beaten path
    danger, peril, risk
    a venture undertaken without regard to possible loss or injury
    business activity, commercial activity
    activity undertaken as part of a commercial enterprise
    type of:
    activity directed toward making or doing something
  2. noun
    productive work (especially physical work done for wages)
    “his labor did not require a great deal of skill”
    synonyms: labour, toil
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    capturing cattle or horses with a lasso
    unpaid labor (as for the maintenance of roads) required by a lord of his vassals in lieu of taxes
    donkeywork, drudgery, grind, plodding
    hard monotonous routine work
    effort, elbow grease, exertion, sweat, travail
    use of physical or mental energy; hard work
    hunt, hunting
    the work of finding and killing or capturing animals for food or pelts
    professional work done according to formula
    cutting grass and curing it to make hay
    manual labor, manual labour
    labor done with the hands
    overwork, overworking
    the act of working too much or too long
    work done under harsh conditions for little or no pay
    calf roping
    capturing a calf with a lasso and binding its feet
    steer roping
    capturing a steer with a lasso
    canned hunt
    a hunt for animals that have been raised on game ranches until they are mature enough to be killed for trophy collections
    strenuous effort
    difficulty, trouble
    an effort that is inconvenient
    least effort, least resistance
    the least effortful way to do something
    strain, straining
    an intense or violent exertion
    exercise, exercising, physical exercise, physical exertion, workout
    the activity of exerting your muscles in various ways to keep fit
    a sustained effort
    application, diligence
    a diligent effort
    any effort that seems to go farther than would be necessary to achieve its goal
    an effort above and beyond the call of duty
    excessive exertion; so much exertion that discomfort or injury results
    stalk, stalking, still hunt
    a hunt for game carried on by following it stealthily or waiting in ambush
    hunting for birds' nests to get the eggs
    the act of preying by a predator who kills and eats the prey
    detrition, friction, rubbing
    effort expended in moving one object over another with pressure
    application, coating, covering
    the work of applying something
    the work of making or repairing vehicle bodies
    manual (or mechanical) carrying or moving or delivering or working with something
    the act of picking (crops or fruit or hops etc.)
    the work of covering an area with planks
    the work of installing the wires for an electrical system or device
    type of:
    activity directed toward making or doing something
  3. noun
    an organized attempt by workers to improve their status by united action (particularly via labor unions) or the leaders of this movement
    synonyms: labor movement, trade union movement
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    I.W.W., IWW, Industrial Workers of the World
    a former international labor union and radical labor movement in the United States; founded in Chicago in 1905 and dedicated to the overthrow of capitalism; its membership declined after World War I
    trade unionism, unionism
    the system or principles and theory of labor unions
    type of:
    reform movement
    a movement intended to bring about social and humanitarian reforms
  4. noun
    a social class comprising those who do manual labor or work for wages
    “there is a shortage of skilled labor in this field”
    synonyms: labour, proletariat, working class
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    labor force, labor pool
    the source of trained people from which workers can be hired
    (Marxism) the unorganized lower levels of the proletariat who are not interested in revolutionary advancement
    organized labor
    employees who are represented by a labor union
    type of:
    class, social class, socio-economic class, stratum
    people having the same social, economic, or educational status
  5. verb
    strive and make an effort to reach a goal
    synonyms: drive, labour, push, tug
    bear on, push
    press, drive, or impel (someone) to action or completion of an action
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    reach, strain, strive
    to exert much effort or energy
    extend oneself
    strain to the utmost
    kill oneself, overexert oneself
    strain oneself more than is healthy
    bother, inconvenience oneself, trouble, trouble oneself
    take the trouble to do something; concern oneself
    type of:
    fight, struggle
    make a strenuous or labored effort
  6. verb
    work hard
    synonyms: dig, drudge, fag, grind, labour, moil, toil, travail
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    type of:
    do work, work
    be employed
  7. noun
    concluding state of pregnancy; from the onset of contractions to the birth of a child
    “she was in labor for six hours”
    synonyms: childbed, confinement, labour, lying-in, parturiency, travail
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    premature labor, premature labour
    labor beginning prior to the 37th week of gestation
    type of:
    birth, birthing, giving birth, parturition
    the process of giving birth
  8. verb
    undergo the efforts of childbirth
    synonyms: labour
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    type of:
    pass through
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