Episode #2: What is the 20 Hour Work Week Movement?

Mar 01, 2020

Have you ever wondered who came up with the concept of working forty hours a week? Or why we often go to great lengths to stay at the office for eight or more hours in a single day?

 We’ve all had that moment where the alarm clock goes off in the morning and we ask ourselves why we have to get up to go to a job that isn’t ideal.

Episode 2 of the 20 Hour Work Week Movement Podcast explains how this came to be and why we believe there’s a better way through starting an online business based on efficiency.

What is the history of the 40 Hour Work Week?

The history behind the traditional work week actually goes back as far as the Industrial Revolution.

In 1817, Robert Owen, a Welsh mill owner and labor rights activist, pushed for a day that consisted of eight hours work, eight hours recreation, eight hours rest for six days a week. 

The overall philosophy gained traction when Henry Ford implemented the 40 Hour Work Week without reducing worker pay in 1926. He found that workers were actually more productive working only forty hours a week instead of forty-eight. Since then, companies across America and around the globe have followed this system. Finally, in 1940, the 40-hour work week became law.

 However, as the years have passed, technology has only increased our ability to get more done at the office in an even shorter time period. In fact, productivity of American workers has nearly doubled since the 1970s.

 If this is true, why are we still spending such long days at the office? That’s why we’re digging deeper into this podcast episode about the importance of the 20 Hour Work Week Movement and why you should consider leveraging technology, experts, and the global economy in your favor.

Why is the 20 hour work week important and why do we need a movement?

Let’s face it… most of us are pretty brain fried by two or three in the afternoon. Working a full eight-hour schedule isn’t productive for any of us and the system of doing so just isn’t working anymore.

A few years ago, Oie started looking for ways to be more productive and accidentally stumbled on a book called Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Lessby Alex Soojung-Kim Pang.

 The author explores several examples of famous writers and thinkers and how they incorporated rest and exercise into their daily routine. It turns out, there are a lot of really successful people who allow themselves more rest than work time.

Darren's road to the 20 Hour Work Week was a little different.  After years of work in corporate America, entrepreneurship, and many stressful years, he was still searching for a true work-life balance. He knew he needed to find proven methods to work fewer hours with a higher level of productivity. So, we started following people who were effectively doing this for themselves.

Learning from others’ failures and successes is a powerful thing. Soon we felt ready to start a new business, built on the principles of working less by and leveraging experts, technology and the power of the internet. The key here is to making processes extremely efficient in order to work less yet still have the necessary income to be happy. Thus The 20 Hour Work Week Movement took shape.

 In fact, we aren’t the only ones that think there needs to be a change. A British think tank called the New Economic Foundation has proposed a 21-hour schedule on the basis of greater staff well-being and sustainability. Essentially, they’ve found that this type of schedule also reduces unemployment by spreading the work resulting in lower welfare needs and greater productivity.

Sounds great, right?

That’s why we support the 20 Hour Work Week Movement. As a society, we are burnt out working the traditional forty hours or more per week. By helping others see clarity in this idea, we are hoping to make the process a movement by which more people can see the value in working fewer hours to achieve a higher level of life satisfaction.

How are we making this a reality?

Part of our effort to help people learn about the 20 Hour Work Week movement is by educating them on how we got to where we are a society. It’s actually pretty interesting and knowing the events behind all of it really makes you realize whythis system is so darn outdated. 

But how are we making this a reality?

If you listened to the first episode of our podcast, you probably already know the answer to this question. We want to help people work less by working smarter and not harder!

 When you hear the idea of only working twenty hours a week, you might think this is crazy or it’s not possible. The truth is that it is possible and we are here to help and support you.

 Instead of waiting for society to catch up to this idea of a shorter work week, why not make the movement happen for ourselves?

To do this, we need your help. Our goal is to find people who share the same beliefs and support each other through this transformation. That’s why we created the 20 Hour Work Week Movement private Facebook Group for support, knowledge, and inspiration.  We'd love to have you join us!

Listen to episode #2 Now!

Are you ready to learn about the reason behind the original 40 hour work week and why using technology, experts, and the internet to leverage your productivity to work less hours is so important?

Great! Go ahead and listen. Then leave a comment on our private 20 Hour Work Week Movement Facebook Group to help support everyone in this movement.

Subscribe & Review in iTunes

Are you subscribed to our podcast? If you’re not, we want to encourage you to do that today. We don’t want you to miss an episode. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

Additionally, we would love for you to write a review on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find our podcast. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let us know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

Links mentioned in this episode:

Download on iTunes | Join the 20 Hour Work Week Facebook Group


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