We all dream of having that perfect work-life balance. It’s probably why we spend so much time debating the topic in the first place. On the one hand, we’re super into our careers. We’re ambitious and have huge dreams and sometimes that means working weekends. On the other hand, we don’t want to miss out on our actual life. But it actually pays off to work less hours, not more – especially if you don’t exactly love your job (or –let’s be real- your boss). Read on to find out the top nine benefits of working less. Yes, it won’t kill you. And yes, you will be much, much happier.
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1. You Won't Have a Heart Attack
Congrats! By cutting down on your hours, you have officially stopped yourself from getting a heart attack. Or having any heart problems. Okay, so there might be other reasons that people suffer from heart issues – like poor diet or living on unhealthy snacks and greasy pizza or ribs, for one thing. Even though those foods are pretty awesome, we all know that they’re not exactly a one-way ticket to health. But work-related illnesses are a huge deal and heart attacks are at the top of the list. You’re 23 percent more likely to have this happen to you if work is getting to you. So by working less, you’re automatically protecting your heart.
2. You Won't Be Stressed Out to the Max
Ah, stress. We all know it well. And we basically hate it. But often, work and stress go hand-in-hand and there’s nothing we can do to get rid of it. From meetings to mean bosses to irritating coworkers to having too much on your plate, we’re all overloaded at the office. Wondering exactly how stress can affect you? It can do anything from making you feel totally anxious, to making you sick 24/7, to making it impossible for you to sleep. Sounds like a ton of fun (not). So it makes sense that if we work less, we stress less, too. Plus you’ll have more time for things, like yoga, which help you calm down. It’s the perfect solution.
3. You Can Have More Fun
Some jobs are fun. Others aren’t. Chances are, your job isn’t all that amazing all the time, so you’re probably starved for some fun. By cutting down on the amount of time that you spend at work, whether you make a deal with your boss to come in an hour earlier and leave an hour earlier, or you’ve sworn against working any weekends, you’re going to enjoy your life a whole lot more. After all, no one goes to their grave wishing they’d spend more hours at the office. Make the most of the end of the summer and enjoy the beginning of fall, too. Go for a walk in the leaves on your time off and grin at the thought of being able to get away from that guy who sits next to you at work who won’t stop humming under his breath. See? Working less is more fun.
4. You Will Be More Productive
Did you know that working longer hours doesn’t actually make you more productive? Well, you do now. When we slave away at our computers, we become more interested in taking breaks and finding other stuff to focus on, and that doesn’t exactly translate to getting tons of work done. You already know the drill: you try to finally finish that project that’s been hanging over your head and you end up staring at your iPhone or iPad. So tell your boss that you’re going to be much more useful to the company when you work less. Prove it to them and they won’t be able to argue with cold hard facts.
5. You Will Actually Work Out
How many times have you sworn to yourself that this will be the week that you start working out? And how many times have you cancelled on that yoga or spinning class because you were so exhausted from work? Well those days are long gone. Now that you’re working fewer hours, you’re going to have time to hit the gym. No more excuses. There are so many amazing benefits that you can get from breaking a sweat, including being able to think better, which will definitely help you in your awesome career.
6. You Can Actually Go on Vacation
We’d probably all go on vacation all the time… if it weren’t for the fact that we have to work full-time and that vacations, of course, cost tons of money. But with less hours logged at the office, you have more time to travel. Going on a holiday can do more than chill you out by giving you the chance to spend hours lying on a beach reading a mystery novel and drinking a fruity cocktail. Holidays can make employees more loyal to a company, feel more positive, and get more stuff done. Work less, travel more, and be even more impressive at your job than you already are.
7. You'll Be Happier
Think how awesome you feel after a three-day weekend. You’re so glad to have the extra day at home and away from the office, right? So just imagine how you will feel if you work less not just every once in a while when there happens to be a national holiday, but all the time. Being in a positive mood allows you to approach any situation with an open mind and with the belief that anything is totally possible. You’ll be a much better, stronger employee since you will be able to approach problems and not totally freak out. Your coworkers will wonder what your secret is.
8. You'll Have Time to Cook
Hallelujah. You love getting creative in the kitchen but hate that your work schedule is so totally nuts that you never have time to do anything expect boil some pasta and heat up a jar of tomato sauce. People that cook for themselves are a million times healthier so this is yet another benefit of cutting down on how much you work every week.
9. You Won't Fall Out of Love With Your Career
Burn-out is a real thing and it’s awful. When we work to the point of total, complete and utter exhaustion, we can start to loathe even the best jobs. That’s definitely bad news for your career since you need motivation and inspiration in order to perform at your best. By logging less hours, you’ll keep your love for your job since you won’t be doing it 24/7. We definitely will start to hate anything that we have to do all the time. So by working less, you’ll love what you do even more. And that’s definitely a very good thing.
So there you have it. These are all valid reasons to start working less. All you have to do now is break it to your boss. Just remember to be gentle about it.
Have you tried working less? Has it benefited your life and career in any way? Please share with us in the comment section below.