People Can Work Up to 39 Hours a Week in a Healthy Way


A study by the Australian National University has shown that people can work up to 39 hours per week in a healthy way. Overwork is a global problem, not just in Japan, and recent scientific studies have provided a body of evidence that it is important to reduce working hours.

Do you work more than 39 hours a week? Your job could be killing you | Life and style | The Guardian

In 2002, less than 10% of people checked their work e-mail after work hours, but today, thanks in part to smartphones and tablets, it is estimated that 50% of people check their work e-mail before going to bed.

In a study of human activity status and health, Columbia University tracked the activity status of more than 8,000 subjects over the age of 45, and found that people averaged 12.3 hours of inactivity on weekdays. And at this time, employees who sat for 13 hours or more a day were almost twice as likely to die early than those who were inactive for 11.5 hours a day. Some researchers have concluded from multiple studies that sitting for long periods of time shortens a person’s life span as much as smoking.

In addition, researchers at University College London studied 85,000 workers, mostly middle-aged men and women, and found a link between overwork and cardiovascular disease. They found that overworking increases the risk associated with arrhythmias, particularly atrial fibrillation. Those considered “overworked” in the study were those working 55 hours or more per week, and these individuals had a 40% increased risk of atrial fibrillation over the next 10 years compared to those working 35 to 40 hours per week.

The “overwork” trend is occurring around the world, with as many as 15,000 workers at IG Metall, the German metalworkers’ union, striking for a 28-hour work week to improve their work-life balance.In February 2017, a research team from the Australian National University found that ” The striking workers in Germany also explained their demands as “self-defense, not laziness. Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, a Silicon Valley consultant, entrepreneur, and visiting scholar at Stanford University, claims that modern workers can only be creative for up to four hours a day.

Furthermore, after a two-year adoption of a six-hour workday in Sweden, workers reported that they were healthier and that their work productivity increased by 85% across the organization.

However, most of these studies focus on the numerical aspect of “working hours” and do not speak to employment conditions. Even if it is only a few hours a day, a stress-filled work environment can lead to a loss of freedom and creativity for workers. According to a study by market research firm YouGov, one-third of all workers in the UK believe their work is pointless. So without improvements in the working environment and employee morale along with working hours, the effect of reducing working hours could be less effective.