Soul Talk

Work 4 Days A Week And Rest 3 Days A Week : Moving Towards Happiness

This conversation about having a 4-day work week instead of the usual 5-day work week started out on a train as Xue Ying and I were heading back home. We were just talking about how tiring work can be after working for such long hours during the day.

An average Singaporean office worker starts work at 9 am and ends at 5pm. That is like 8 hours a day with your mornings and afternoons all spent at the office desk, typing and working your way through. What’s left is your precious evenings where you get to spend some time alone but this isn’t a case for many people because they still need to spend time with their family and children. It’s physically and mentally exhausting to be working straight in a row for 5 days from 9 am to 5pm! If only the working hours are cut down to 5 to 6 hours or reduce the number of working days to 4, then we humans have more than to breathe, think and get a life.

With the extra day, we can schedule for our personal appointments to visit the doctor, run our errands or spending time to take care of our children or elderly.

Many people often attribute family breakdowns, divorce, stress and other family issues to the lack of money and high living costs. But perhaps time is actually the root cause of such societal problems that weakens relationship and pull human ties further apart.

I work from 7 am to 3pm but sometimes I knock off at 5pm. As an unmarried single, I have the freedom to rest, update my social media channels and sometimes watch some YouTube videos to unwind and get back to bed early. But for those who have a family, I can imagine how little time is left for themselves after having to juggle between cooking meals, tutoring children and spending time with their spouses. Sometimes we get too comfortable and used to this lifestyle that we accepted this harsh reality and abide to this form of social standards.

Wouldn’t you rejoice if you only have to work 4 days a week or fewer hours in a day? Let’s face the truth. The truth is we aren’t very productive at work all the time. Sometimes, we are piled up with work but sometimes we are not. And to play that fair game, whether you are free or not, you just have to be present in the office like everyone else. Sounds familiar? And those were the times you wish you weren’t wasting time here in office and suddenly your working morale dropped by a notch.

Of course, there are going to be some jobs that can’t stick to the 4-day work week. If that’s the case, then the other alternative is to limit the working hours. We aren’t machines that can keep churning out the deliverables at a constant rate. We are merely humans. Work for us should be something that allows us to tap on our creativity which we are blessed with. It should be fun and exciting not mundane and exhausting.

Too many a times we would hear nagging complains about work and I am a victim too. Sometimes I wish I could step out this societal realm and go against the human flow then venture out on my own. I know that time has come and it is time to step out of my comfort zone. If you are with me, I hope the best for you too. Step out, take one deep breath and I call this world your very own. It’s afterall a playing field for us to live once and enjoy this journey whether it is a smooth or bumpy ride. If you want to make a difference, take charge and fly.

Watch the video below and you will know what I really mean.

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