Throwing Out The Five Day Work Week

We are so conditioned to the five day work week from the time we are little kids in day care and nursery school. But some businesses and governments are changing that. Some workplaces have gone to four day work weeks with 10 hour days to save money and supposedly give people more time with their families. What does that mean? If your company is on a cost cutting budget and you are a workaholic, the work doors stay closed on Friday and either you are working at home, or finding something else to do. It also means if you have kids, someone else takes the before school and after school duties. I’m not so sure that a four day week gives you more family time either. After all, most kids and most spouses are still in school or working that fifth day. But what do I know? I am a freelancer.

As a freelancer, the notion of five day work week went out the window on Day 1. You work when you have the work. Period. That means working 18 hour days sometimes because the servers where you work have been down for three days. It may mean pulling an all nighter so that you can pay rent and other bills. Your notion of a normal week quickly changes to whatever goes. It calls for exercising some control over your schedule to keep your sanity.

Creating a weekly schedule if you can helps. Getting out of the house and making plans to meet friends also helps. While I like the flexibility of freelancing, sometimes it’s easier to for the weekend to actually feel like a weekend if I schedule it with weekend things like shopping or watching movies. But I must say, I do like going to the grocery store and the movie theaters when they are not crowded during the week. Although, doing this on a regular basis can give you a total sensory overload if you do have to go to the grocery store or out to the mall on the weekend. I’m constantly amazed at how noisy these places are on the weekend, even the public library. I usually end up making a quick get away.

Freelancing also makes me more aware of how I spend my time. I’m constantly checking if I have worked enough, will I have enough money to meet bills, to also pay for the fun stuff. This can also drive me nuts, but when I look back on the week and see how fast it has gone compared to working 5 days a week in an office, then I think that the extra effort is worth it.

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