The Ideal Working Hours
The Melbourne Institute Worker Paper recently released a report on a 2016 study that revealed something interesting. We all work 8 hours per day, 5 days per week – that’s 40 working hours per week on average.
Of course, some work more and others work less. The 2016 study analyzed the working habits of more than 6,000 men and women. The participants took a series of cognitive tests under pressure – they had to overcome challenges that could seriously hamper their performance. After adjusting for different factors such as economic well-being, employment, quality of life, and family structure, the study revealed that people who worked 25 hours per week had the best results.
People Over 40 Should Work Only a Few Days Per Week!
The study has only confirmed what numerous experts have been saying for years. Shortening the working hours to 25-30 per week has been considered by many countries, and some have even started a pilot project. Workers aren’t really effective with the current working hours, and reducing the number of working days to 3 per week could be the solution.
According to professor Colin McKenzie from Keio University, our intellectual stimulation depends on the working hours. Work, as he says, is a double-edged sword. It does stimulate our brain, but it can also dull it. Long working hours can cause stress and exhaustion which can be potentially damaging. So, reducing the workload can actually have positive benefits for our mental health.
Geraint Jones, Professor of Economics at Lancaster University Thinks The Same.
He says that many studies have shown that our cognitive functioning declines after 25 hours of work per week. The decline is minimal up to 35 hours, but it really declines after a 40-hour work week.
This means that our brain gets overworked with the way things stand now. Apart from the cognitive decline, the 40-hour work week has been associated with stress, anxiety, depression, and several other problems. Work can even derail the relationship with your family and friends. This is why France has made it illegal to email or call employees after their shift is done.
As it seems, better times are coming for all of us. Numerous countries are already shortening the number of working hours per week, and we think it’s a matter of time before everyone accepts it.