The hope is that employees won’t just mellow out, they’ll also recharge — so they can be better workers. Go ad-free.

Four-hundred thousand employees already contract illnesses anually in the American workplace, so is death by overwork on the horizon, too? One study found sedentary adults had shorter telomeres, which are the buffers at the ends of chromosomes that stop them from fraying and clumping together. Women working in these kinds of fields have always had difficulty ascending the corporate ladder, but the long-held assumption has been the problem might be ameliorated by instituting “family-friendly policies” that allow the workday to be designed for flexibility: telecommuting, unfixed hours and the like. In Japan, employees frequently die from overwork. Officially, Japanese people work fewer hours per year than Americans, but this figure is misleading due to the prevalence of unpaid overtime work.

The hope is that employees won’t just mellow out, they’ll also recharge — so they can be better workers.

Death from overwork—referred to as karoshi—is so common that insurance companies compensated 813 families for it in 2012. Take a look at this quote from a male employee who seems to believe that all women are baby machines who are ill-prepared to do the heavy lifting required to excel: It’s just basic math, right? If there is anything that might strike today’s working women as particularly dated about the song, it is the obsolete idea that a workday might be firmly bracketed, its hours assured, secure and guaranteed. “For project managers, I want them to worry about the project. Evidence for this came from those interviewed.

Democracy is in peril. Ad free partners: & Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. And though employers may put less pressure on men to demonstrate they can be great workers as well as great fathers, there’s still a hefty penalty to be paid. Well, do you work at a standing desk?
The very well-intentioned answer is to give women benefits, but it actually derails women’s careers. Women are the project manager in the home, so it is hard for them to spend the necessary time, energy and effort to be viewed here as senior leaders.”, In some cases, women were looked down on for working the hours necessary to succeed. People who commit suicide due to overwork are called karōjisatsu (過労自殺). Officially, Japanese people work fewer hours per year than Americans, but this figure is misleading due to the prevalence of unpaid overtime work. A, Yet Japan, at the very least, demands a legal minimum of 10 paid vacation days (though many employers provide more) along with, Without any legal right to vacation, sick days or maternity leave, nearly a quarter of Americans work jobs that offer no paid time off, per a, For women working in what might be described as white-collar “professional” fields, technology, changing cultural expectations around work, and for the last few years, recessionary belt tightening now require they do more with less, a series of factors that has given rise to what the, "The readily available work-family narrative allows firms and their members to avoid this reality and the anxieties it creates by projecting the problem exclusively onto women and by projecting the image of a successful employee exclusively onto men.”, Women who don’t engage in the 24/7 work culture, who cut back on hours, choosing to spend more time with family, are often denied promotions and career advancement. Fifty are women and 50 are men. Rightfully so, too: The United States Department of Labor reported an average of 11 Americans die on the job every single day either from transportation incidents, violence in the workplace, or contact with objects and equipment. Now research suggests that the real issue is the sheer volume of work, and work hours.

Working can be deadly. Conversely, those who play the game, so to speak, giving most of their lives to their jobs — and researchers found that there were plenty — are also penalized by employers who measure them against a different yardstick than their male peers. … then let us make a small request. When Dolly Parton sang about working “9 to 5,” she was indicting the many flaws in the system — particularly for women — though not the very structure of the work day itself. Videos are often thought of as being a waste of time, but there may be some benefits to online gaming, such as social connections to combat loneliness.

This is all well and good, but it still doesn’t get to the issues at the core of why women keep getting shortchanged in their careers. Tired brains, which science tells us inevitably result from working without reprieve for longer and longer, are less creative and inventive, and more mistake-prone. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. But as for the song’s retro idea of an 8-hour workday? @2020 - AlterNet Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. Mother Jones found that the percentage of professional and middle-income Americans who worked more than 50 hours per week rose considerably in the 30 years from 1977, years that have coincided with wage growth stagnation. Why Are Americans Overworking Themselves to Death? In China, where employees often lack union protection, an estimated 1,600 people die each day from overwork. According to the National Institute of Mental Health of the National Institute of Health, “your immunity is lowered and your digestive, excretory, and reproductive systems stop working normally.” If not relieved, this level of stress increases risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and depression. But in other developed countries, work itself is the killer. This new study shows how your Facebook feed may be affecting your emotional health. Yoga is offered in offices across the country. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet. Has the Real Power of Solar Energy Arrived? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower?

That means we’re now collectively putting in more work hours each year than the country where necessity led to the invention of the term karōshi (“death from overwork"). Apple picking could be a good outing to take this fall, as it lends itself to social distancing.

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Mr Toshitsugu Yagi's death in 1987 was not recognised by the Labour Ministry as one that was caused by overwork. In an era in which Gallup reveals the American 40-hour workweek is actually far closer to 47 hours — nearly a day longer than it was 35 years ago, when Parton’s song was released— a bonafide 9-to-5 workday now seems almost quaint.

Though it's a flawed feminist anthem steeped in capitalist dreams and white-collar, middle-class aspiration, Dolly Parton’s 1980 hit song "9 to 5" still plays as an ode to America’s overworked, underappreciated women workers.
According to a surveyconducted in 1989, 45.8% of section chiefs and 66.1% of department chiefs in major companies thought they themselves would die from overwork.

At the heart of the Times piece is a Harvard Business School study titled "Gender & Work: Challenging Conventional Wisdom." Tired brains, which, shows that interrupting the work day for brief intervals of “me time,” taking vacations and getting a full night’s sleep are all key to maximizing productivity. Karoshi (過労死, Karōshi), which can be translated literally as "overwork death" is a Japanese term relating to occupational sudden mortality. Officially, Americans know this as "sitting disease." White-collar businesses with employees in high stress, high-skill positions have taken note of this, and people like Arianna Huffington — who happens to be both a woman and one of the most public workaholics of our age —, about the wonders of disconnecting and “digital detoxing.”.

Because chronic sitting is also a thing in America — and it’s scientifically proven to alter your DNA, thus shorten your life span. Let us remind you that a proper day of hooky can do wonders for stress, creativity, and overall mental health. Copyright (c) 2020 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. Twenty-five of the women are going to have kids and might want to work, but won’t want to travel every week and live the lifestyle that consulting requires of 60 or 70 hour weeks.

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Without any legal right to vacation, sick days or maternity leave, nearly a quarter of Americans work jobs that offer no paid time off, per a 2013 study from the Center for Economic and Policy Research.

Should we ever get an accurate, more up-to-date cover of the song (and let’s keep our fingers crossed that the music industry doesn’t stoop so low), the lyrics would need an intense overhaul. Workplace deaths have also surfaced in South Korea, Indonesia, and even in the United Kingdom, where a 21-year-old Bank of America intern died last year after pulling three "all-nighter" shifts in a row. In addition to longevity, prolonged sitting negatively impacts cancer and obesity risk, chronic conditions, and mental health.