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Change the Work Day To Change Your Health

On Friday morning, I jumped on QF401 to Melbourne. For those readers who are unaware, this flight leaves Sydney at 6am.

Work TravelAnd as usual last week the airport was incredibly insanely busy – including a 25m cue to get through security. Even though it was school holidays 95% of those flying around Australia were part of the corporate world, judging on what they were wearing. Which got me thinking: when does a work day start and end for these people?

If my day was an example of a small business owner, the answer: start at 4:15am and finish when I arrive home at 8pm.

Can that be healthy?

Absolutely not and here is why?

  • I did not have 8 hours sleep the night before.
  • I missed my work out for the day.
  • The food I ate was blurk! Rushing to the flight, I had no breakfast, so I enjoyed the unhealthy breakfast that Qantas supply at 6:30am. Then with a body clock out of whack, I was grazing all day before chomping on rissoles, vegi’s and mashed potato on the way home.
  • I didn’t take my multi-vitamins.
  • I had a chocolate fix at 3pm to keep me going.
  • I didn’t see my 16 month old daughter at all on Friday.
  • And I felt rushed and stressed all day.

The point of my blog is to share insights into managing stress and creating balance while running a small business. I always want to walk my talk and set an example but I failed last Friday!

Yes I am human . . . I am no different to you.

But I truly think that this where working in 2010 sucks  – whether being an employer or employee. We ask too much of ourselves and our staff. It is not healthy for us or our relationships. We need to change the expectations we have on ourselves, our employees and our service providers.

All 3 stakeholders can come to an agreement of what is expected with a new goal in mind of not adversely affecting people’s health and happiness. It is not impossible to make this change.

How about under all conditions (including travelling) our work days are 8am to 6pm?

Malcolm Gladwell, the author of The Tipping Point, says anything is possible as he recounts his version of how the Berlin Wall was pulled down. Surely, this massive historical event has nothing in comparison to changing the average work day.

We just have to want to it.

We need to make it a priority.

We have to be committed.

We all must support and understand the movement.

We have to understand that if we don’t make the change then we are could be causing irreparable damage to our personal health and even our relationships.

Who is up for starting a movement in making a change to your working day?

What do you think?

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Justin Tamsett

Justin Tamsett

Justin is Australia’s leading fitness business management consultant. He’s worked in the industry since 1989, as a personal trainer, sales manager and health club owner. He understands the pressure that SME business owners and managers sometimes put themselves under. He’s been there and done that and now suffers from a stress-induced chronic illness! In his blog he’ll share his tips on how to stay healthy, productive and happy at work and at home, whether you’re a couch potato or a gym bunny. Follow him on Twitter @JTActiveMgmt or check out his personal blog www.JustinTamsett.com

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