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Old 01.11.2017, 22:38
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Should I go part-time?

Hi all you great EF sources of wisdom. This is my current dilemma. Approaching my 57th birthday, and starting to feel the wear and tear of a mon-fri office job. Sitting. It's so unhealthy, both physically and mentally. Starting to think about going to 90%... equals every Wed. afternoon off to work on my health, go to the club, bike, swim, go to the spa, work in the garden, do chores that would otherwise eat up my weekend. For my body, soul and mind. Downside: about 800 CHFs a month. Should I go for it? Life is too short to spend it slowly dying behind a computer at job that will mean nothing to me once I'm done.
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Old 01.11.2017, 22:46
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Re: Should I go part-time?

Nobody on their death bed has ever wished they had spent more time at the office... A step in the right direction in my opinion assuming you can afford it... if you can afford more go 80% why not? You could have 3 day weekends
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Old 01.11.2017, 22:46
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Re: Should I go part-time?

Whether or not you can afford to live and be happy on Fr. 800 a month less depends largely on
  • whether you are currently financially responsible for anyone else besides yourself,
  • to what extent you could lower your expenditure to compensate for some or all of the income drop, (or whether that even matters) and
  • the provisions you have made for your old-age, given that your future pension through your employer will end up correspondingly lower.
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Old 01.11.2017, 23:13
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Re: Should I go part-time?

I think you know the answer Karl Enjoy that extra afternoon off
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Old 01.11.2017, 23:17
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Re: Should I go part-time?

instead of taking a Wednesday afternoon off, I would try to convert it into additional holiday. an afternoon is easily wasted as it is generally not easy to leave the office and lunch time and you also have commuting time.

alternatively, take every second Wednesday off.
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Old 02.11.2017, 07:19
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Re: Should I go part-time?

Can you afford it? Is your 2nd Pillar full? Same question for 3d Pillar?
If yes, go for it and enjoy your extra time.
However, if you are not absolutely set up for retirement, consider the conservative route. There are hard times ahead (I hate sounding like Cassandra, but still).
You know, you can probably "find" 4 extra hours during the day. Actually, my husband leaves work every Tuesday at 15:00 and he compensates by starting work earlier on all other days.

Note: I recently had to reduce my hours by 10% and take the paycut accordingly (similar amount of money). The reason was practical: School hours combined with our specific location (isolated village). I can tell you that I can see the difference in my personal finances, because this CHF800/month comes directly out of my savings! My savings rate is reduced by 50%, actually.
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Old 02.11.2017, 07:34
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Re: Should I go part-time?

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Hi all you great EF sources of wisdom. This is my current dilemma. Approaching my 57th birthday, and starting to feel the wear and tear of a mon-fri office job. Sitting. It's so unhealthy, both physically and mentally. Starting to think about going to 90%... equals every Wed. afternoon off to work on my health, go to the club, bike, swim, go to the spa, work in the garden, do chores that would otherwise eat up my weekend. For my body, soul and mind. Downside: about 800 CHFs a month. Should I go for it? Life is too short to spend it slowly dying behind a computer at job that will mean nothing to me once I'm done.
Lol, my husband is much younger than you and wants to go on 80% or 90% which will mean that he will actually work 100%....
I would say that in this situation you won't give up 800 francs a month, you'll gain something more valuable than those money: time!

Of course, only you know how "disposable" this income really is. Nobody can decide for you. I would say give this idea some time because who knows, you might grow out of it and probably for good reasons too.
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Old 02.11.2017, 08:01
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Re: Should I go part-time?

I would suggest 80% if you can afford it. "Karl is off on Wednesdays" is much easier to explain to colleagues than 90%...
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Old 02.11.2017, 08:53
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Re: Should I go part-time?

Karl, is your company really, truly, supportive of working part time?

At some companies asking to reduce your schedule in effect means you have just volunteered for the next round of layoffs. Work-life balance is just an empty platitude. Hopefully you don't work for such a company...

Or if you do, do you care?
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Old 02.11.2017, 09:03
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Re: Should I go part-time?

Many companies offer lower% working. But few employees take up the offer as it is perceived (wrongly) as a sign of weakness/less commitment.

Provided your pension is not adversely affected. I would seriously look into having all Friday off. We did this for the last 15 years of our working lives - giving us a 3 day weekend.

Now, of course, we have a 7 day weekend...
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Old 02.11.2017, 09:05
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Re: Should I go part-time?

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Karl, is your company really, truly, supportive of working part time?

At some companies asking to reduce your schedule in effect means you have just volunteered for the next round of layoffs. Work-life balance is just an empty platitude. Hopefully you don't work for such a company...

Or if you do, do you care?
My thought too. Past companies claimed to support work life balance, but part timers were considered people who couldn't hack it (and were the first to go in layoffs). They also worked the same amount, but got paid less (did same work in 4 days and often worked the day off).

Move closer to work. 45 mins saved each day is equal to that half day.

Last edited by Phil_MCR; 02.11.2017 at 09:43.
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Old 02.11.2017, 09:30
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Re: Should I go part-time?

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Hi all you great EF sources of wisdom. This is my current dilemma. Approaching my 57th birthday, and starting to feel the wear and tear of a mon-fri office job. Sitting. It's so unhealthy, both physically and mentally. Starting to think about going to 90%... equals every Wed. afternoon off to work on my health, go to the club, bike, swim, go to the spa, work in the garden, do chores that would otherwise eat up my weekend. For my body, soul and mind. Downside: about 800 CHFs a month. Should I go for it? Life is too short to spend it slowly dying behind a computer at job that will mean nothing to me once I'm done.
You say your health is at risk and tha tlife is too short and yet are asking if we think if it is worth it? It's your life, and only you know your own mind, career, health, budget and finances.

If your work supports it and you can afford it now and in the future then on the surface the answer is pretty clear.
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Old 02.11.2017, 09:53
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Re: Should I go part-time?

Take 80% work and then take two half days in the week (TUE/THU) so you will always be saying to yourself "tomorrow I work half-time!" - nice!
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Old 02.11.2017, 10:03
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Re: Should I go part-time?

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My thought too. Past companies claimed to support work life balance, but part timers were considered people who couldn't hack it (and were the first to go in layoffs). They also worked the same amount, but got paid less (did same work in 4 days and often worked the day off).

Move closer to work. 45 mins saved each day is equal to that half day.
This. Not to mention that one needs to talk with the HR who'll try to talk you out of this, and if you really insist you'll have to give better reasons than - I need more time to live, not just live to work.
If OP had young kids or a new baby coming soon, now that could have been a good reason, and I'm not even sure about that. There are companies who advertise themselves as offering a good balance between work and private life but they're far, far away from that. They really make sure they squeeze every drop of energy for the money they pay.
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Old 02.11.2017, 10:09
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Re: Should I go part-time?

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Hi all you great EF sources of wisdom. This is my current dilemma. Approaching my 57th birthday, and starting to feel the wear and tear of a mon-fri office job. Sitting. It's so unhealthy, both physically and mentally. Starting to think about going to 90%... equals every Wed. afternoon off to work on my health, go to the club, bike, swim, go to the spa, work in the garden, do chores that would otherwise eat up my weekend. For my body, soul and mind. Downside: about 800 CHFs a month. Should I go for it? Life is too short to spend it slowly dying behind a computer at job that will mean nothing to me once I'm done.
Part time would be a great solution, if you can manage it (as others have said) but, if you are worried about your health and sedentary day-to-day, is there anyway you can move more at work?

Ask if you can install a standing desk.
Take regular breaks where you can walk around or take a trip up the stairs to the top floor and back every couple of hours or so.
Does your company have showers onsite? If so, you could go for a run or do some other exercise at lunchtime.
Is your office anywhere near a swimming pool? You could take a couple of lunchtimes each week to do an hour's swimming.
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Old 02.11.2017, 10:12
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Re: Should I go part-time?

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Should I go for it?
Yes.

Jos .

Who has no Ferrari, but is working 20%. Certainly beats working 120% and having that Ferrari.....
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Old 02.11.2017, 11:17
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Re: Should I go part-time?

just be careful you do not take say 80% but end up working 100%
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Old 02.11.2017, 11:23
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Re: Should I go part-time?

Provided the 90% actually do equal 90%, provided you can indeed take off Wednesday afternoons without any problem and do not have to compensate the time elsewhere, provided it is not a "trap" to get less salary yet work the same amount as before - then of course, I see no reason why you wouldn't go for a free afternoon. Money is just money, as others say, you're unlikely to look back and say to yourself, oh boy, if only I had worked more...

However, I do find half days are tricky to take off - full days are easier.
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Old 02.11.2017, 12:06
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Re: Should I go part-time?

With travelling time, having to wake up as usual in the morning and dress and prepare for work - you have lost 2 out of the 4 hours that you are trying to gain for relaxing.
80 percent is the only real option - also your tax will be less, so you will not lose all the money.
Problems are later with RAV, pension, IV, BVG - you never know which direction life takes you (Speaking from experience)
Can your doctor prescribe 20 % preventative stress related Zeugnis for a few months and see if you feel better?
Only a suggestion!
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Old 02.11.2017, 12:15
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Re: Should I go part-time?

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just be careful you do not take say 80% but end up working 100%
This bound to happen to a certain extent. Karl will be doing what it took 100% of his time to do in 80% - still worth it though...
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