Time management: ideas to reconcile work and family
While the Greenwich meridian passes through Castellón and London, we are on the Polish schedule. Our work culture and our schedules are not "sustainable". Long and unproductive days are just the tip of the icerberg of a social problem that goes beyond the vaunted "work-family conciliation".
We live a frantic lifestyle, favored by an intensive and sometimes irrational use of the planet's resources -gasoline for daily commuting from home to work and from work to home- double housing as a symbol of social status, but without time to enjoy any of them, unbridled consumption based in credit, and finally shortage of the most precious good: time, the only currency with which we can buy our life and build the relationship with others.
The easy solution would be to divide the work and adjust our pocket, as Holland did in the post-World War. But nevertheless. Spain should aspire to more than increase the percentage of part-time work and justify full employment.
Ideas for managing time: reconciling family and work
A rational, European and productive schedule, would result in lower health costs (stress), improved care tasks (children and the elderly always in the hands of others) and the development of stronger families and more effective and stable social networks. To achieve this we can do affordable things that are really in our hands. Some have been suggested by the Time Rationalization Platform:
1. Restore the value of punctuality as a sign of reciprocal respect for social, work and family time.
2. Change the mentality. It is about giving a remuneration adjusted to the results and the contribution of the employee and not to the "hours of presence" in the office. The long days produce profitability only in the short term but in the long run "burn people".
3. Promote European time and harmonize labor, commercial, school and tourism with the rest of countries. One way to achieve this is to advance the entry and exit of work, promote continuous days and give the possibility of being more productive and more motivated, especially in the case of parents with children of school age.
4. Advance all television programming, especially that of reference spaces, as in the case of news programs. The consequence will be a "drag" effect of all social hours: lunch, dinner and, as a consequence, leisure, work and family.
5. Refocus the schedule, adjusting all occupational health prevention policies. The lack of sleep, stress, obesity and even road accidents are factors directly related to our time habits. For this, it is necessary to seek the complicity of the media and of the various public instances: local autonomic and central.
6. Encourage online services from the public administration, banks and businesses. Without a decided public bet in investment to train citizens in the electronic window, online banking transactions, or online shopping, there will hardly be a change in the simplification and saving of citizen time.
7. From school, form in the true sense of co-responsibility male-female at home. This question is something that goes beyond the distribution of tasks associated with a role. It is about training people, from a very young age, to think about the meaning and therefore the project of their lives, helping to apply time management strategies and also making free and responsible decisions, looking at the long term , fixing and then following the priorities set in the different areas - personal, family, social and work - in each moment of their life trajectory. Only in this way will we be able to live intensely each of our days.
Consuelo León Llorente. Coordinator of the Postrado in Family Policies UIC Barcelona