Here’s What Science Has To Say About Whether You Should Work Overtime


The stress and fatigue from longer work hours isn’t worth the additional money:

Does extra work buy happiness and well-being? Unique survey data are analyzed to consider whether measures of self-reported subjective happiness, psychological health and economic satisfaction bear a net positive or negative relationship with working extra hours. Overtime work hours generally are associated with increased work stress, fatigue and work-family interference. When overtime work is required, this appears to offset the otherwise greater happiness and mental healthiness produced by its additional income. Mandatory overtime work is associated with additional work-family interference and unhappiness for some workers but the opposite for some others. Policies most fruitful for improving individual economic and social welfare should focus on minimizing the incidences where overtime is both mandatory and harmful.

Source: “To your happiness? Extra hours of labor supply and worker well-being” from Journal of Socio-Economics Volume 35, Issue 2, April 2006, Pages 382-397

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