Long Weekend? Really?!

So after almost a year now of working only 80% time at my day job I can firmly say that one of the oddest things that I have noticed has changed is long weekends are now effectively meaningless to me most of the time.  You see when you have every Friday off already, having another day off after that doesn’t seem as important anymore.

In some regards I’m drifting a little bit towards the concept that many retirees have of long weekends…they only realize they exist if someone reminds them since the concept have often ceased to have the same meaning anymore.  When you have every day ‘off’ the point of a long weekend is really lost.

I think my transition has more to do with the fact that a two weekend doesn’t give you much time to really get a lot done, yet three does.  At least to me it always seemed to be after your required chores around the house, errands and other ‘to do’ items you would lose most of one day.  That then leaves you really only one day to relax and perhaps do something fun or go visiting some friends or family.  So when you already had three days for a long period of time, you don’t have the same backlog of things to do as if you were working a full time job.  The result is I don’t really look forward to long weekends the same way anymore, despite the fact it means a four day weekend for me.

It’s not to say I’ve gotten everything I would like to get done during my three day weekends, as I often use them to balance off work that come up from my other jobs (school board and freelance writing).  Yet I have to be honest that even if my other jobs are ‘work’ I do enjoy it so much for the most part it really doesn’t feel like the regular job at all.  I think that is really the difference between doing work you like versus doing work you love.  Doing work you love on your ‘day off’ doesn’t really bother you since it is more like play than work.  That is in essence the reason I’m working towards financial independence, I don’t want to stop working, but I certain want more control over what I choose to work on.

Has anyone else who worked part time for a while run into a similar issue with long weekends?  Or if you have never worked part time, would you like to try a four day week?

9 thoughts on “Long Weekend? Really?!”

  1. During my first year of full time employment, I worked without taking any vacation and accrued 15 days off. My works allows us to carry days over, so now I am able to take off Fridays in July and August and still have time banked for longer vacations every couple of years. I LOVE having Fridays off in the summer, and I totally agree with your assessment, having that extra day to run around and get stuff done really helps reduce the weekend workload. Plus it’s nice to have some alone time!

  2. Back in 2000, my last year of full-time employment and my first (and only) year of having 4 weeks of vacation, I took every other Wednesday off during the summer with those extra days. I liked having the midweek break, working only 2 days in a row while having a weekday to spend doing errands I normally had to fit in on weekends.

    In the 2000s, I worked part-time for most of the years (3 days or less per week), so I almost always had Mondays off, giving me a 3-day weekend. Sometimes, I also had Fridays off, giving me a 4-day weekend. What that meant was being able to more easily schedule my midweek, nonwork activities while still being able to avoid the weekends to do my errands.

    Eventually, working even 2 days a week become too burdensome because it was becoming difficult to schedule my other stuff without encountering schedule conflicts. Retiring fully in late 2008 alleviated nearly all of those conflicts.

  3. I’m self-employed and very, very booked, with clients both inside and outside of Canada’s borders. As a result, holidays in general and by default long-weekends don’t really have any meaning to my workflow.

    Deadlines are deadlines, and I manage my time accordingly – arbitrary “days off” assigned by the federal or provincial government don’t come into play.

  4. I am currently working 10 hour days on Mon, Tues and Wed with the remainder of the week off. Nice schedule although I am fairly tired by Wed. When I have an extra day off, such as a holiday on Monday, I DO appreciate it, not so much for the day itself, but that it makes my work week even shorter.

    I am retiring at the end of June and wondering what it will feel like not to have a schedule at all. I am a nurse practitioner so I plan to do some per-diem work for my present employer but I wonder if, like @deegee, even that will feel burdensome. I am keeping an open mind about this retirement thing and how I will adjust to it, but doing some work for a local Hospice sounds meaningful and less stressful.

  5. @kaye, I don’t know how much flexibility you have in your scheduling, but would a schedule which does not include working on consecutive days be possible for you? One thing which helpd me to a degree when I reduced my weekly hours worked in 2007 was to assure my never working on consecutive days any more. After a day with the long commute (is your commute long, too?) it was somewhat reassuring to not have to go through it again the next day.

    For me, this improvement was short-lived, as I needed to have zero work and zero commute.

  6. I have taught 4 days a week for 6 years now, and would agree that long weekends are not as exciting as they used to be.
    Unfortunately I am going back to work 5 days a week this fall – for a year at least. I am not really looking forward to it (except for the budget boost) but my rights to recall to full time will end this year. By going back for a year, I earn myself 5 more years part time, with a guarantee of full time if needed.

  7. I look at long weekends as the perfect opportunity to work on my online side business. The eventual hope is that this will lead to me being in the position you are currently describing!

  8. @deegee, at the end of June I will be working per-diem which means my employers calls when/if they need help and I can say yes or no. I agree that working consecutive days is tiring and I plan NOT to do that after July 1. Thanks for the input.

    I may end up in your camp, though, where any days at all will be too many!

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