Why you need to work part-time

Since the industrial revolution we workers have been following the employment model advocating a 40-hour week. In Australia getting agreement on a cap of 40 hours work/week took 93 years (1855 until 1948).

So I’d like to point out the obvious; guys we’re not in 1948 anymore and this 40-hour work week model is way out of date. I think the next shift is underway (and may take another 93 years) towards having a “portfolio” of work activities rather than one 40-hour / week job.

I don’t mean to say there aren’t flexible work options out there but I think you would agree part-time professional work is very hard to find. I’m not talking about working at a café or bookkeeping here (no offense) but 6-figure middle to high-income roles.

During our mid-life we all start asking questions of ourselves and the world. It may not lead to a crisis but we start to look for a different mix of things in life that align with our changing values (at some point we realise life/work is more than earning a big income).

Most people I talk to would give up a day per week of work to pursue activities that add meaning to their life or at least allow them to explore other interests outside of their chosen profession.

This does not mean they aren’t committed to their work but allows room for a person to explore and widen their perspective. Google gets this allowing people to work one-day per week on their pet “project”.

Recently I have been trying (very hard) to create my work portfolio with a mix of professional consulting and coaching/blogging. So far I would give myself a 4/10 score. But I am persisting because I truly believe this is how I can best serve others. Too much time consulting and I lose touch with what nourishes my soul (heart), too much time away from the corporate world and I feel my intellect (head) is being under-used/wasted. What about you, what’s your story..?

Close you eyes for a sec and try this visualisation:

Imagine you have re-structured your work life, imagine what it would be like to work a four-day week; exploring other things or generally unwinding and spending more time on nourishing pursuits…

What immediately comes into your head? Write it down. Any of these come up..?

“that’s selfish”

“that would never work in my company”

“I can’t afford to”

“if only…”

“that would be great BUT…”

This self-talk points to your source of “unhappiness” (blockers to fulfilment) in your current work/life portfolio. If you are currently frustrated and/or unsatisfied at work maybe all you need is some time out every week to help reset and reconnect back to what nourishes you. Don’t know what nourishes you…? then you definitely need to consider a re-structure of your work and maybe give me a call ;-)

Please forward this on to people who may benefit, thanks.



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2 comments on “Why you need to work part-time
  1. Tom says:

    I really enjoyed reading this blog. It is for sure the way of the future. Things have changed so much in 60 years…

  2. Raksha says:

    Wow! I love this thinking Niall! I’ve often fantasised about working this way but always seem to pull myself back to ‘reality’ and the pressures or expectation of clients around being available for them. Thanks for the food for thought, I’ll spend more time ‘working’ on this one. Take care!

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