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How Working On Shorter Days Can Help Your Mental Health And The Environment

How often do you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by the never-ending cycle of work, home, and more work? It’s no wonder that stress levels are rising all over the world. In this article, we are going to explore how working on shorter days can help both your mental health and the environment. Read on to learn why taking a break from your typical nine-to-five could be an important step toward improving both yourself and the planet!


In our culture, the traditional work week is Monday through Friday, 9 to 5. But what if we took a cue from the rest of the world and shortened our work days? Numerous studies have shown that working fewer hours can lead to increased productivity, improved mental health, and even a smaller carbon footprint.

The average American worker puts in more hours than employees in any other industrialized nation. In fact, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Americans work about 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers. This leaves little time for leisure activities, family time, or even taking care of our health.

shorter days improve work life balance

It’s no surprise then that shorter work days have been linked with increased productivity. In a study of nurses in Sweden who switched from an 8-hour to a 6-hour workday, nurses reported better quality of sleep, fewer sick days, and increased job satisfaction. And when Google experimented with shorter work days at their offices in Australia, they found that employees were not only happier and healthier but also more productive.

But it’s not just our health that stands to improve with shorter work days – it’s also the health of our planet. According to one estimate, if Americans reduced their workweek by just one day (from five days to four), it would save the equivalent of 100 million barrels of oil each year.

What is a Shorter Workday?

A shorter workday is any workday that is shorter than the standard 8-hour workday. There are many reasons why someone might choose to work a shorter day, including wanting to have more time for personal or family responsibilities, needing more time to complete daily tasks, or simply preferring to work fewer hours.

Spending time with family
A family spending time together

There are some benefits to working a shorter day. For one, it can help improve your mental health by reducing stress and increasing job satisfaction. It can also give you more time to enjoy activities outside of work, such as spending time with family and friends or pursuing hobbies and interests. Additionally, working a shorter day can help reduce your carbon footprint and save energy, as less time spent at work means less time commuting and using office equipment.

If you’re considering working a shorter day, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, make sure you talk to your employer about your plans; they may be open to accommodate your request if they see the potential benefits. Second, remember that a shorter workday doesn’t mean you have to cut back on hours worked per week; you can simply spread your hours out over fewer days. Finally, don’t forget to take into account how a shorter workday might affect your income; you may need to adjust your budget accordingly.

Benefits of Working on Shorter Days

There are many benefits of working on shorter days. For one, it can help improve your mental health. Studies have shown that people who work shorter days are less likely to experience depression and anxiety. They also report higher levels of job satisfaction and well-being.

In addition, working on shorter days can help the environment. Longer workdays require more energy to power buildings and lights. This results in more greenhouse gas emissions. Shorter workdays mean less demand for energy, which can help reduce environmental impact.

  • Mental Health Benefits
Playing with the dog
Shorter days mean more free time for play, exercise, and wellness

Some mental health benefits have been associated with working on shorter days. For example, it has been shown to reduce stress levels, improve mood and cognitive function, and increase job satisfaction. Additionally, shorter work days have also been linked to improved sleep quality and quantity. Finally, working fewer hours has also been found to decrease the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

  • Environmental Benefits

Working fewer hours has a host of benefits for both your mental health and the environment. For one, it can help reduce stress and anxiety levels, as well as improve work-life balance. This can in turn lead to better sleep, more time for physical activity and socializing, and overall improved mental health.

In addition, working fewer hours can help reduce your carbon footprint. This is because you would be commuting less, using less office equipment and resources, and generally consuming less energy. All of these things contribute to a healthier planet.

How to Implement a Shorter Workday

There are several ways to implement a shorter workday. Here are a few tips:

  1. Talk to your boss or HR department about the possibility of working fewer hours.
  2. If you’re self-employed, start scheduling your workday so that it ends earlier.
  3. Make sure you use your extra free time wisely by doing things that improve your mental health and well-being, such as spending time with loved ones, exercising, or pursuing hobbies.
  4. Use your shorter workday as an opportunity to be more environmentally friendly by reducing your commute, working from home more often, or carpooling.


In conclusion, working shorter days can be beneficial for both your mental health and the environment. Not only does it give you more time to focus on activities that bring joy and fulfillment, but it also reduces your carbon footprint. We hope this article has shown you why working on shorter days is a good idea and provided some tips on how to make it work for you. So, why not try out this new way of living today? You may just find that it’s exactly what your life has been missing!

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