4 productivity tips to maximize a 6-hour workday

You’ve probably heard how Sweden debated establishing a six-hour workday with full-time pay and benefits. The hope was to protect workers from long-term potential exploitation and make it easier for workers to achieve a positive work-life balance.

in sweden, Six-hour working days were tested among nurses in an elderly care home in Gothenburg. Nurses reported that they had more energy for their work and increased enthusiasm about working fewer hours. Part of this is because they had more time to spend with their children and families.

After the trial was over, the six-hour workday scheme was scrapped across the country due to high costs. In other words, the labor cost of paying full wages for six hours was too high to make it a sustainable model.

It’s important to remember, however, that nursing is a position that requires staffing at certain times of the day or, in some cases, around the clock. During this trial, 17 nurses were recruited to cover the hours cut off from working a six-hour schedule. A six-hour workday only works if you can compress the productive projects of an eight-hour workday into six hours.

For some people, this will be impossible, especially if the employee’s hours are dictated by staffing reasons. However, if your job is more flexible and you find that there are parts of the day where you feel behind and Decreased productivity Because of the possible length of the day, then this may be a good place to shape your productivity output.

Advantage of a 6-hour workday

Positive effects of the six-hour workday include increased energy throughout the workday without any slumps. Taking short breaks rests your mind and can make you more productive when you return to work. On the other hand, taking long breaks can stall productivity and lead to lack of motivation.

Due to the faster pace and increased value of work time, many people experience a strong productivity boost. Workers feel that every hour is more valuable than before. At the same time, they value themselves more as people, as their leisure time becomes an important consideration. This increases employee loyalty, and studies have shown that fewer employees took sick leave when working six hours. A Good work-life balance It will also help reduce burnout in those who don’t feel overly stressed by this schedule.

Disadvantages of a 6-hour workday

Some people do well with quick bursts of energy and project-oriented focus. For such people, a closed cut-off period and limited breaks are a boon. Other people, however, enjoy and even require eight-hour workdays to complete their projects. They may need a more leisurely pace or feel stressed and stagnant when they run out of time. Increase excitement and productivity. They may need a break to decompress their mind and may not mind the extra two hours they spend at the desk.

If a six-hour workday is a possibility that increases stress and reduces productivity, it’s definitely not right for you or your startup. However, if you thrive on speed challenges and hate that extended slump after lunch, give it a try for a week or two and see what you can do.

Maximize a 6-hour workday

1. Adjust your time for communication needs

Because your workday will not cover normal business hours, you should adjust your hours to facilitate communication between you and those who need to contact you. If everyone is contacting you between 1pm and 4pm, set your hours so that you are available during that stretch. This is an especially important consideration if you are traveling between different time zones.

2. Make a clear separation between work hours and holidays

If you plan to have a six-hour workday, but end up dragging your workday into the evening, it will be difficult for you to take your six-hour workday seriously. A productive six-hour workday depends on a sense of urgency when you’re at the office. It also depends on enjoying your free time away from the office when you stop working.

Many positions require fielding emergency calls and emails even when the office is closed. But try to check email at least. Reward your workdays and validate your time with late-afternoon walks or hikes, meals you don’t usually have time to cook, hobbies you’re interested in, and time with your loved ones.

3. Make a plan every day

Use the last five minutes of your workday to plan what you need to do tomorrow, so you can start without distractions.

Then, when you come into the office the next day, use your first 10 minutes to go through your emails and memos, so you can plan a solid list of what you need to do that day with notes from the previous day. . This will set you on track to work your way down by progressing through the list. It will also reduce stress by preventing you from thinking about what to do next.

4. Keep a productivity journal

Keep a short journal while you try it. It can be part of your daily planner, if that makes it easier for you. Evaluate what you did and how your workday went. It’s also important to make a note of how you feel at the end of the day. Do you still have energy for your hobby at home? Are you more tired now than if you worked the full eight hours? Or do you find yourself excited to embrace the rest of your day?

This journal is a good place to aim if you find that your work is piling up and need those extra hours. Above all, keep yourself open to change and feedback so that whether it’s this schedule or another, you can find the best work rhythm for your daily patterns.


If you’re an entrepreneur or business owner who has the flexibility to adjust your hours, the 6-hour workday may be for you. One of the main goals of any manager of a business is to Increase productivity. A shorter workday may seem counterproductive, but in reality, your business needs may change. Test different methods to see if the change will move your business forward and improve the lives of you and your employees.

This article was first published in December 2017 but has been updated and expanded.

Rebecca Moses on Twitter
Rebecca Moses

Staff Writer: Rebecca Moses is a creative writer who can’t stop meddling in the real world. While living in Colorado, he developed a special interest in small business manufacturing. He loves a writing challenge, dabbles in illustration, and reads to understand how all things work and grow. Find her at RebeccaMosesWriting.com

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Article Tags:

Business Opportunity · Featured · Grow Your Business · Leadership · Mindset · Productivity · Your Mindset

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Find Your Way · Grow Your Business · Productivity · Your Mindset

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