You work 20% more than you can safely handle

Illustration of one near empty fuel meter labelled When we should take a break

By reading this blog, you are almost certainly a Knowledge Worker. Not someone who does physical labour, but a person whose work requires knowledge and generates knowledge.

Knowledge workers tend to self regulate their workload, and they often default to a simple strategy: start saying “no” when they feel stressed. The problem with this strategy, is that they don’t start pulling back until after they have too much going on: leading to the 20% overload that’s so consistently observed.

The overload manifests in many forms, including but not limited to:

Potential remedies

Rather than the common 40 hour work week, knowledge workers should consider a 5-hour work day or Four day work week.

How to start saying no