Should people over 40 work a three-day week? – By Luisa Dillner – The Guardian

Should people over 40 work a three-day week?

cognitive tests

People under 40 performed better in the cognitive tests than those over that age

While some work is good for your brain, doing more than 60 hours a week into your 40s is worse than doing nothing, according to a recent survey

Working full-time after the age of 40 is not good for the brain. Doing more than three days a week once you reach this age can damage your ability to think.A paper from the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research says that, while working up to 30 hours a week is good for the brains of the over-40s, do any more than that and it goes downhill. If you were to work 60 hours a week, your cognitive ability would be worse than that of someone who didn’t work at all. Still, on the plus side, you would have more money than them.     

The researchers used data from more than 3,000 men and 3,500 women who completed the national Household Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (Hilda)survey. The survey tested the ability to read words aloud, recite lists of numbers and match letters and numbers in a speed trial.       [Read more]

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  • Rosaliene Bacchus  On September 6, 2016 at 1:19 pm

    Portent of a future to come of less work for people over forty?

  • demerwater  On September 8, 2016 at 4:31 am

    I am ‘stepping out of my wicket’ a bit here; but I believe that all cultures recognize that there are stages or phases of life.
    One legend of Kaieteur suggests that old folk were placed in a corial and sent over the falls. I read of a nomadic tribe in the Arctic who would leave their aged (slow?) near a fire with some food as the rest moved on. They identified two stages – or so it seems. Shakespeare’s “All the world’s a stage” goes into some detail – 7 stages. The Hindus’ “Four stages of life” expresses a similar philosophy.
    Which brings the topic down to ‘little ole me’. I can review my own life in its stages. From birth until 18 during which stage I acquired the ‘tools’ to live a good wholesome life. Then there was a stage where I tested a lot of what I had learnt – often at a cost! (ssh!). In my late 20’s I got married and that is a WIP still!
    A year ago, I decided to walk away from it all. All those years of ‘work and the good life’ appeared to have been almost a complete negation of all the good and wholesome things I had learned beforehand. There was an awareness that if I made up an “Einstein” (I think) list of pro’s and con’s of my life, the net sum would be a big fat “0”. This just would not do.
    So, for me to tip the balance sheet more in my favor, the very least I must do is to freeze the deficit side. And this I could do only by withdrawing from the work environment.
    It has been enjoyable for the most part. In between nurturing my physical and spiritual selves, there is very little idle time.
    My wife might have a very different perspective; so please do not ask.

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