We live in a culture that values busyness almost to the exclusion of everything else. This has become such an ingrained attitude that a car commercial can joke about success being defined as only taking two weeks off in August.
And we get the joke.
But things may be changing. Over the past few years the minimalist movement has made a significant mark of the popular imagination thanks to sites like Joshua Becker’s, Becoming Minimalist, and Ryan Nicodemus & Joshua Fields Millburn’s The Minimalists. And while the majority of Americans are not throwing out their china sets or living out of a backpack, the knee-jerk reaction of he who has the most toys wins is eroding.
Now, this minimalist-inspired change of heart may be encroaching on the godfather of busyness and materialism, Wall Street.
Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan and Bank of America have all decided to limit the amount of weekend work for their junior employees.Bank of America sent out a memo on Friday telling its young employees to take four weekend days off per month. ~ Business Insider
Granted, four days per month doesn’t sound like much, but when you consider that this is an industry that has often prided itself on 100 hour work weeks it is a pretty big step.
Bankers are not the only ones working late hours. We are all busy people. The advent of smart phones has only made it worse with all of us effectively on call 24 hours a day. It would be one thing is all these hours lead to amazing creative breakthroughs, but all this overwork does just the opposite. It leads to diminishing returns.
Creativity and problem solving- 2 key work place abilities- are demonstrably lessened with overwork. Studies have actually shown that taking breaks leads to higher rates of productivity.
So rest. It is good for you and your job performance.
Everyone needs downtime, and taking appropriate rest will allow you to be more productive in your working hours. Do not neglect it.
Take a nap. Go for a leisurely walk. Read something for pleasure. Watch a little TV. Let both your body and mind rejuvenate.
What is your favorite way to unwind? Share your tips in the comments.
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