North East UK Lifestyle Blog

What It’s Like to Work a 4-day Working Week

September 5, 2019
girl sat at table drinking a cup of tea - 4-day working week

I’m going to start off by saying, I know. Having a 4-day working week is a massive privilege and one I’m super-duper grateful for, but please, let me explain first before you get yourself all finger-waving at me.

When I came back from travelling earlier this year, I had a bit of a quarter/third life crisis. (Another one?!) I know, right. But this one was different, I didn’t know whether to have a career change.

I dabbled with the idea of training to be a wellbeing/mental health practitioner. But, I’m a bit of a crier and more than an average emotional sod so not the best route for me I don’t think.

But looking back at previous work, I was tired of not feeling inspired at work, not feeling motivated and in general, not really wanting to be there. I had watched my University friends soar in their jobs and myself just plod along. They were getting promotions and pay rises and I seemed to stay a bit stagnant, despite putting the work in and trying to expand my knowledge as much as possible.

I started applying for the odd jobs here and there, with none of them being exactly ideal but then a friend tagged me on a job role post on LinkedIn.

30 hours a week spread over 4 days. Choose your own hours. Opportunity to work from home. Full. Time. Wage.

TELL ME IT’S NOT TRUE?!

Is someone actually, you know, ‘getting’ the modern working culture?!

I got myself an interview within only a few short hours and got the role as basically an SEO & Content Executive. Something slightly new to me and something oh so familiar.

A challenge with a bit of a safety net with something I consider myself fairly ok at? Sounds like a good balance to me.

girl sat at table with breakfast

So, what’s the deal? There must be something? Some kinda catch? Do I have to sell my soul? Work silly hours? Weekends? Be on call 24/7?

Nope. My boss just kinda gets the whole work-life balance thing.

Imagine. Someone in the marketing world not putting a sh*t load of pressure on you, crazy targets that you’ll probably never meet and making you juggle things like you’re some kind of circus act. All of which causes unnecessary pressure and stress.

But rather wants you to be happy in your job, plays to your strengths and gives you an extra day off to rejuvenate.

I know I am in a really lucky situation and these jobs are probably few and far between right now. But I really have no idea why more companies aren’t taking on this initiative.

You only have to pop a quick search into Google to see all the benefits that a 4-day working week has. There are numerous studies that have shown business’ that have a 4-day working week have seen crazy increased levels of both productivity and employee happiness.

I can’t remember the last time I got the ‘Monday blues’, or rather the Tuesday woes cos Monday is now my extra day off.

I wake up feeling ready to work, ready to crack on and ready to see results.

I appreciate the extra day off so much and it makes me want to work harder. I get to spend more time with my family, my loved one, my friends.

I get to do the things I love, relax in our new flat, read more books, sleep just that little bit more, take better care of my eating.

If you’re a regular Thumbelina Lillie reader, it’ll be nothing new that last 2 years I really struggled with my mental health and my job had an impact on this.

Right now, I’ve never been happier. I have the perfect work-life balance and it’s all down to a 4-day working week.

You really don’t have to live to work.

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