No one truly ‘clocks-off’ from work anymore. Thanks to email, phones and laptops, many of us are answering emails and checking in on projects long after the standard 5pm clock-off time. In fact, an Australian Institute survey of 1459 people found that Australians are working an average of six hours’ unpaid overtime a week – that’s a collective $106 billion of free work employers are collecting every year.
However, you might want to rethink your work/life balance after reading the results of this French study.
The study surveyed more than 143,000 participants and found that for people who are working for 10 hours or more per day, for more than 50 days of the year, have a 29 per cent increased risk of stroke. That means just two hours of overtime per day could put your health at risk. The study also found that people who were working overtime regularly for 10 years or more had higher risks of stroke again.
In fact, recent research indicates that even working beyond just 40 hours per week can be detrimental to mental, emotional and social health, not to mention the increase of cardiovascular issues, fatigue-related problems and a decrease in productivity and good decision-making.
So, what does a healthy work schedule look like?
According to data analysed by the Australian National University, the work limit for a healthy life should not exceed 39 hours per week. The research also suggested that, when taking into consideration the domestic work and care loads usually shouldered by women, the healthy work limit for females is 34 hours per week.
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