8 hours or 16 hours or more to live/love your life

Once upon a  time in the last century  in Britain a sort of agreement was reached between the bosses and the unions who were fighting for the employed.

Go to Work  for 8 hours

Go to Sleep for 8 hours

and then that leaves

8 hours for Yourself

This was the birth of the 40 hour week.

At the time it was a great bargain, fought hard for. Of course some of those eight hours were caught inside the middle of work, with tea breaks and lunch breaks. And even outside of work we still had to find time to eat, prepare clothes for more going to work etc.

Nevertheless the notion was accepted ( mostly) that everyday you had 8 hours for your own stuff.

8 hours for your family, your friends, your hobbies, your dreams?

So what did we do with those 8 hours? What did we get sucked into.. is it productive, is it relaxing, is it when you stop to think about it what you would do, IF you did


More specifically what do YOU do with those 8 hours and do they feel like enough?

Chances are you are working some of them.

Somewhere for many of us the split was never that direct anyway.  Either we went hunting for a job we loved, OR we fell in love with it somewhere along the way. It might have been the tasks we were engaged in, or the team we were part of. It might have been the opportunity to DO stuff, that had always been elusive at school and university and now it was real.. and it was exciting. It was not always easy but there was an enthusiasm.

Eight (ANY) hours at work is nothing when it doesnt feel like work and it is easy for the day to be an expansive time with lots of different pleasures in it. And healthy too

Was it Confucious who said ( or was quoted)

” Do what you love and you will never do another day’s work again”

It is easy to love stuff when you can be yourself, when you can have your own authentic reaction to events, when you can have some real say in what you do. When you are awake most of the time, not just sleep walking through activities that you now know off pat, or which you have lost the desire to fiddle with…

So I have a question for you…

I’d love to see your answers and please feel free to pass this post and the poll on to everyone you know..


One thought on “8 hours or 16 hours or more to live/love your life

  1. Being in what I call ‘active retirement’, (I hate that ‘pensioner’ label!) I don’t fit the questionnaire very well: no one pays me to turn up and work … what this post reminds me is how lucky I am, that most of the time I can do things I love (‘most’ doesn’t include supermarket shopping or housework of any kind!). And when I earn even a tiny sum from, say, selling a poetry pamphlet, it feels more like riches than a salary ever did. But whether salaried, self-employed or in active retirement, it’s the same me, facing the same challenges: in my case, how to be less ‘busy’ … how to sit and look instead of constantly doing … thank you Sarah for reminding me!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s