I have Wednesday’s off. With the odd exception, Wednesday is a completely non-work day for me.
I’m a big fan of the four day week.
It’s a shift I’ve seen a number of clients make over the years.
I have a number of clients who have gone from a very strict 45-hour week running 8am to 5pm or thereabouts, to flexing their hours between work and home, having an afternoon off or doing a three or four day week.
And they say they will never go back.
They don’t even think about work being so boxed or rigid anymore. It doesn’t even make sense to them now.
And, most importantly, the number of hours they work in a day or week is no longer how they measure value.
Instead they value output: What is achieved in the day – regardless of how many hours it takes?
When we stop clock-watching (which is so 90’s anyway!) and instead start watching what we’re contributing, all sorts of cool things start happening. Like better focus, more productivity and more enjoyment.
And more satisfaction to boot.
Because now we’re focusing on what we want to achieve rather than on clocking up the hours.
And not just for ourselves, but for those around us too.
So what if your team gets better sales results in fewer hours? Isn’t it the results that matter?
And isn’t it so beautifully ironic that working fewer hours could give us more satisfaction?
How does this sit with you?
What does it bring up for you?
Do you feel envious? Judgemental? Irritated? Fearful?
Whatever it brings up in you is a clue to your internal roadblocks to having these freedoms and choices in your own life.
They are your internal beliefs and filters.
And we all have them.
I can guess what some of them are because I used to think them too!
Working a four day week? That’s not very committed. He obviously isn’t so dedicated to his career anymore.
If I do that people will just think I’m lazy. And anyway, why do I need another whole day off in the week? What’s wrong with me?
It won’t look good in the office – everyone stays late and tries to look busy. There’s no way I can leave on time.
Oh, I couldn’t do that. I wouldn’t earn enough money. We’ve got a mortgage to pay.
That wouldn’t work in my business. I have to be (hyper) available to my clients.
Get real. That doesn’t happen in the real world. It’s just not REALISTIC. Come on!
If you’re going to work fewer hours you should get paid less.
What does she do all day on a Wednesday? When everyone is at work? What’s that about?
(BTW on a Wednesday I have lots of time to myself. I attend coaching for myself. I walk the forest, see my niece, journal, garden, read, occasionally watch Netflix, study or do some online learning. I rest. I nap. Believe me, I never run out of ideas on how to spend my time…)
But it has nothing to do with what I like to do and why I choose to spend my time this way.
It has everything to do with your internal compass.
What you want. How you want to spend your time.
Right now most of the planet lives their life according to the norms, rules, expectations and precedents created by previous generations. Generations that experienced similar and different realities to the world we live in now. Rules that came out of the industrial revolution. Norms that are outdated and irrelevant. Values that came through your family line that may no longer suit who you are and how you want to live your life.
Maybe they’re not ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, but importantly: are they useful or relevant to you now?
We are each conditioned to believe that life – what we do and how we live – is meant to be a certain way – in order that we feel accepted, sensible and a good citizen.
We weren’t bought up to tune into our inner compass and feel what our heart’s desire is (actually, a select few were and if that was you, you got real lucky and here’s to that!).
We were primarily taught to conform, be sensible and work hard.
The good news is that this isn’t a life sentence.
It changes the moment you change your mind.
What would your internal compass say if you, hand on heart, asked it what you’d like your daily life to look like?
What’s your version of ‘Wednesday’s off’?
Here’s to that.