Monday, October 24, 2011

Can't Find a Job? Work Part-Time and Live a Simple Life

It seems it is in the news daily...more people can't find work, especially those over 50. I know a few people who have been looking for full-time work for two years. I also know another person who finally found work, but it took him two years, and he now has to commute. It's the same sad story all over the United States. Even recent college graduates are having a hard time finding work. Right now, the jobs that people are finding are only part-time, since many employers can't hire full-time and/or they don't want to offer health insurance.

What's the answer? Now's the time to look at your expenses and see if you can live more simply. You can live in an Intentional Community with others, or if you own your own home, you can either downsize or rent out a couple of rooms to like-minded people. Co-housing, a form of Intentional Community, is another option. I know a woman who sold her home and moved into a room with her two dogs. She also house sits for others. I also know a man who has never owned his own home. He rents a room and also house sits. These people live a simple life, unburdened by material possessions. You can get creative and find meaningful work you love, especially when the economy is in bad shape.

Since most employers are not interesting in "spreading the work load," which means less layoffs and gives more people jobs, people who are not employed have to think about the skills they have to offer and create their own work. Check out 48 Days to the Work You Love by Dan Miller. This is an excellent book for anyone in transition, whether you want to work for someone else or become an entrepreneur. Also, review the list of interesting web sites listed on the left side of my blog.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Dan Buettner and the "Blue Zones"

Dan Buettner searched the world to find out what makes people happy. In his latest book, Thrive: Finding Happiness The Blue Zones Way, he talks about "Thrive Centers" which are interconnected: community, workplace, social life, financial life, home and self. On page 216, in Chapter 6 (Lessons in Thriving), he states "Limit the Workweek. When it comes to long-term happiness, personal income fails to provide much of a boost for Americans once a household rises above the $60,000-a-year threshold. Individuals who work long hours have less time for social interaction, education, culture, sports and volunteer work. They're also more likely to suffer chronic diseases and a poor family life. The Danish-mandated maximum of 37 hours per week is a good benchmark."

On page 70 (the chapter about Denmark), he states "Most Danes work 37 hours a week and go home to their families or their associations. They take an average of six weeks vacation. If people work for money, they do so to get just enough. The lesson: Knock off at 5 p.m. and take your vacations. The Danes' Protestant work ethic is tempered by their understanding that working too hard - or too long - is a waste of time. So they get their jobs done and pursue other things they enjoy."

Dan Buettner is an internationally recognized researcher, explorer and author. He founded Blue Zones to research the world's best practices in health, longevity and happiness.

This is an excellent book.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Take Back Your Time Has YouTube Channel

Take Back Your Time now has a YouTube channel. Nearly all the lectures from their 2009 Vacation Matters Summit are available on this YouTube channel. The Vacation Matters Summit was held in Seattle, Washington, a project of Take Back Your Time. Video filming and production by Todd Boyle.

To access the videos, click HERE. On the right side of the page there are "playlists" of the talks that have been posted so far. Because posted videos have to be less than 10 minutes long, the playlists are the easiest way to collect the clips in chronological order.

Speakers include Joe Robinson, Sarah Speck, Arnold Pallay, Peter Fraenkel, Suzy Ross, Cecile Andrews and Mara Adelman.