In 1926, Henry Ford created the eight-hour workday and five-day workweek for his employees and it soon became the norm. His motives weren’t altogether altruistic though. He wrote in the company newsletter, "Just as the 8-hour day opened our way to prosperity in America, so the 5-day workweek will open our way to still greater prosperity . . . It is high time to rid ourselves of the notion that leisure for workmen is either lost time or a class privilege . . . People who have more leisure must have more clothes. They eat a greater variety of food. They require more transportation in vehicles." (From Ancestry Jan 09 Newsletter)
Imagine having to work 10 hr days 6 days a week and it makes you thankful for Henry Ford and labor unions who pushed for shorter work hours. But then I'm also thinking of those individuals in all our families who worked 24/7 with no breaks and no pay-they were our parents, and us when we were parents.
I sometimes take my retirement for granted and not having to work. Being able to choose how and what to do to best use my time is a blessing. I've worked most of my life as a teacher-in Universities, then as an elementary school teacher, librarian and finally as a part time community education leader. The jobs I most enjoyed were part time so I had some time and energy left to be a parent. But retirement is a wonderful luxury I enjoy daily and spend most of it writing histories, doing genealogy research and blogging with a little teaching thrown in here and there. I love to teach adults!
What do you plan to do with your retirement or what are you doing if you're retired?