Canadians are professionally burned out and angry. The 4-day workweek can easily fix that

Canadians are professionally burned out and angry. The 4-day workweek can easily fix that

"We all deserve an extra 52 paid days off a year, and the moment to claim our free time back has arrived," assures Canadian social entrepreneur Stuart Hickox.

Exactly a century ago we were all predicted that by 2023 we would only work 2 days a week. At that time, the most fashionable technical innovation was electricity and artificial light. It was predicted that this technical innovation would allow us to do normal work in much less time.

In 1923, Henry Ford pioneered the use of the industrial assembly line to produce automobiles in-line, which allowed him to reduce the 6-day workweek for his workers by one day without reducing wages. In the hundred years since then, there has been no change in this regard, despite all the technological progress.

About the same technological leap happened in the 1990s. Productivity literally took off with the advent of the Internet in our lives. Remember? Tasks like sending messages to clients that used to take days were now completed in seconds.

So what happened to all that saved time? If we can now do in two or three days the same amount of work that took a worker an entire workweek in the 1980s, why are we still working five days a week? Simply put, it's all about greed.

Economic growth insatiably consumes all the most important resources, including your life. Instead of giving people back their personal time, increased productivity has been turned into increased profits for a small segment of society. You do more work for the same pay to make the rich even richer. This urgently needs to change.

A 4-day workweek with no wage cuts would be the first visible step toward restoring work-life balance. It would also give people time to stop and pay attention to the most important social and environmental problems now facing contemporary society.

It takes time and a renewed sense of community to solve these problems. The best way to engage millions in the process of rebuilding society is to unleash social potential by giving everyone the most valuable commodity of all: time.

We have much more important things to do than spend our lives making a small group of rich people even richer.

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