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Sweden Just Implemented Something That Is Changing Lives… Could the U.S. Follow Suit?


I love living here in the United States and wouldn’t trade it for anything. That being said, what Sweden is doing is sorta making me rethink things.

Sweden is moving towards a standard 6-hour work day, with businesses across the country having already implemented the change, and a retirement home embarking on a year-long experiment to compare the costs and benefits of a shorter working day.

“I think the 8-hour work day is not as effective as one would think. To stay focused on a specific work task for 8 hours is a huge challenge. In order to cope, we mix in things and pauses to make the work day more endurable. At the same time, we are having it hard to manage our private life outside of work,” Linus Feldt, CEO of Stockholm-based app developer Filimundus, told Adele Peters at Fast Company.

Are you packing your bags?

Filimundus switched to a 6-hour day last year, and Feldt says their staff haven’t looked back. “We want to spend more time with our families, we want to learn new things or exercise more. I wanted to see if there could be a way to mix these things,” he said.

Feldt reports that not only has productivity stayed the same, there are less staff conflicts because people are happier and better rested. In February, the Svartedalens retirement home in Gothenburg, Sweden, implemented a 6-hour work day for their nurses with no changes to wage, and will be running the experiment until the end of 2016 to figure out if the high cost of hiring 14 new staff members to cover the lost hours is worth the improvements to patient care and employee morale.

I am telling you this sounds great. I am daydreaming while trying to finish this article. “The Svartedalens experiment is inspiring others around Sweden: at Gothenburg’s Sahlgrenska University hospital, orthopaedic surgery has moved to a 6-hour day, as have doctors and nurses in two hospital departments in Umeå to the north,” The Guardian reports.

I guess until the rest of the world catches up with Sweden – which is also making moves to become the world’s first fossil fuel-free nation – we’ll all just have to move there. Are you in?

While you think about it, share this on your timeline for discussion, then add your comments below to let us know if you’re in for the trip.

H/T – fastcoexistThe Guardian, Science Alert