The collection is helping to solve a slew of scientific and societal puzzles — not least, a paradox about modern life. There is a widespread perception in Western countries that life today is much busier than it once was, thanks to the unending demands of work, family, chores, smartphones and e-mails. But the diaries tell a different story: “We do not get indicators at all that people are more frantic,” says John Robinson, a sociologist who works with time-use diaries at the University of Maryland, College Park. In fact, when paid and unpaid work are totted up, the average number of hours worked every week has not changed much since the 1980s in most countries of the developed world.
You're not as busy as you say you are. "According to sociologist John Robinson, or better known as “Father Time” to his colleagues, most people have around 40 hours of free time per week." [more inside]
What did Mozart do all day? A poster breaks down the daily habits and self-reported routines of hundreds of composers, painters, writers, scientists, etc to illustrate how people find the time to construct their work.
I am not busy. I am the laziest ambitious person I know. Like most writers, I feel like a reprobate who does not deserve to live on any day that I do not write, but I also feel that four or five hours is enough to earn my stay on the planet for one more day. On the best ordinary days of my life, I write in the morning, go for a long bike ride and run errands in the afternoon, and in the evening I see friends, read or watch a movie. This, it seems to me, is a sane and pleasant pace for a day.Tim Kreider: The ‘Busy’ Trap.
The Environmental and Economic Pluses of the 4-Day Workweek: "Forget everybody working for the weekend. In Utah all government employees have shifted to a four-day workweek, and the state is calling it a win-win-win for its budget, workers and clean air. Utah has saved $1.8 million in electrical bills in the last year, the air has been spared an estimated 6,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide, and workers are thrilled. Eighty-two percent of them say they prefer the new arrangement, which still enforces the 40-hour week by requiring 10 or more hours a day Monday - [Thursday]. Is it time to ask your boss if you can take off Friday .... forever?" (via)
"Wasting time gets a bad rap", says Lisa Belkin in today's NYTimes, who argues that time often considered "unproductive" or "wasted" in today's workaholic culture is actually time well spent- "Over the years I have come to see that the hours away from the writing are the time when the real work gets done." Readers seem to agree.
You deserve a month off! The thirty hour workweek. The shorter workweek. The AFL-CIO on bargaining for alternative work schedules. Is it true that "Almost half of US workers (47%) are responsible for the care of children and/or elderly or disabled adults?" Part time work and women. "We aren't whining. We do work too much."