A young American graduate who has been working full-time for less than a year described in a letter to the American media Business Insider how his “9 am to 5 am” is an ordeal.
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Piper Hanson, 23, of Louisville, Kentucky, advocates and hopes to enjoy a better lifestyle.
Here is an excerpt from the letter he sent to the media in hopes of adding his voice to the debate about the working conditions faced by young people entering the workforce.
“I work in a YMCA office and find my job very rewarding, but it takes up most of my life. I’ve only been working full-time for a few months, since I graduated from college in the spring, and I feel so overwhelmed by it all.
How can I make sure I eat well, see my friends and have time for my hobbies? How am I supposed to fit my whole life into my work schedule.
I usually get up around 7am and I’m at work from 10am to 7pm. When I get home, I barely have time to walk the dog and make dinner before it gets dark outside. Next, I have to make sure I have something to pack for lunch the next day. I’m only home a few hours before getting ready for bed at 11pm.
Does life have to be like this?
There’s been a lot of thought lately sparked by a viral video of a Gen Z worker crying because she no longer had time to live her life with the demands of a 40-hour work week. Some people were sympathetic, saying they felt the same way and were angry with the system after decades of work. Others disagreed.
Some people judged that Generation Z was not “strong”, that young people should join and get used to it, because that’s life.
I just want to say: we know it is. But does it have to be? It is very depressing to live like this.
I try to schedule time to do things with my friend who lives nearby, but one of us is always exhausted from work or has to wake up early the next morning.
It seems like all we do is work and come home to rest before going back to work – it’s hard. It’s not how humans are supposed to live. And that’s what I love about Gen Z: we see the reality of the world as it is, but we also see that there’s an opportunity to make things better.
Maybe if more of us realize this, we can make a difference. Better living is possible.
I wish there were more options for working hours
It’s not even that I don’t like my job, because I do. But I feel like it takes up most of my life. There was a problem at work the other day and a co-worker turned to me and said, “Are you ready to deal with this for the next 45 years of your life? And I his stomach clenched.I’m not ready.
I wish there were more schedule options that allowed you to have a life outside of work. I don’t want my next 45 years to be the same as these last few months: go to work, come home for dinner, rest, then go back to work.
I want to live my life too.
I don’t know if a full-time, face-to-face job will be in my future for the rest of my career. I want to be able to have a more flexible life, where I can maybe go to the office for a meeting in the morning, then eat lunch at home and have time to run errands in the afternoon. I want to be able to work remotely more.
I see other people in more flexible situations that allow them to travel or enjoy other things outside of work, and I want that too. But in the meantime, I try to fill that void by seeing my friends and developing hobbies, in the little free time I have.»