We Are Working Too Much

6 min readNov 9, 2023

There are no good reasons to work this hard.

Photo by Alex Kotliarskyi on Unsplash

Global Warming is partially explained by people working too much. The more we work, the more we pollute, the warmer the planet becomes. If we worked less, we would pollute less, the planet would not warm as fast.

So, who told us that we must work 40 hours a week? What is that based on? We already know that it is not based on all of us being provided what we truly need. That is a fairy tale no one believes in, and yet we are all following suit.

  • What is the normal speed of work so we can maintain our own needs and stay within the framework of the planet?

We can dig into this question, but a real problem with discussing this issue starts then with the very words we use already. The second a person uses the word capitalism, most babies get thrown out with the bathwater, positions are taken in on barricades. The second a person uses the word regulation, most babies get thrown out with the bathwater, more positions taken in on barricades.

Already our words are dividing us, making us ineffective in discussing the issue. What is going on?

Shouldn’t it be obvious that we involved ourselves in a divide-and-conquer reality, just so no one is in control? As a result, of course, those having their eyes on the (financial) prize walk away with more than what the planet can bear because no one is stopping the madness. There are no controls.

We work too much, more than the planet can bear. We seem out of control, all of the time, not slowing down.

When there are problems, folks like to take on the whole enchilada and can’t distinguish the front end from the back end. There are various components to this problem of our working too much.

An economy is like a horse, and we do need a horse jockey to guide the horse to where we want to go. Yet look how some governments are incredibly good at doing not-much. Not just the government in the US, but officials in some other nations sit gladly on their hands, too.

When we are not taking the reigns, then we continue our walk up the ramp of ruining the planet as we know it (killing more animal species than we already have). We should not let the horse make all decisions.

Let’s talk details.

  • The Crash of 1929 is a good example of what humans were doing who had more money than they needed.

In this case, people with money put their extra money in the stock market (buying stocks) in the hope of making more money. Placing extra money in the stock market beyond the reasonable value of the stocks inflated the entire market. When this was realized, some folks pulled their money out of the stock market in time, while others were too late to do that. The market crashed.

Though the market corrected itself, the overconsumption of stocks was not addressed. In time, people with more money than they needed put their money back into the stock market.

Why do some people have this abundance of money?

Because the horse is not reigned in properly. Money ends up going to those that have money already in greater numbers than what is essential to make the economy work well for us all. The ones with money receive ways to speed up the increase of their getting more money. This is the speed that we are not controlling and it affects why we work too much.

  • There is no stop to the increasing momentum, other than the crash. We are not controlling the speeding up of our economies. We continue to work too much.

Interestingly, those without enough money help money become most important, simply because they themselves don’t have enough of it. The folks at the less blessed levels of society end up seeing money as the most valuable essence in their lives. They are part of a tricky game played out against them.

  • The producing companies do not just pay their own workers; they want to pay the stock holders, too, of course. So far, no real problems. Yet the more the producers pay the stock holders, the more valuable their stocks will become. The more they can squeeze from the workers, therefore, the more they can pay the stock holders, including themselves.

This leaves the workers more hungry for money than necessary, and this feeds into the belief among investors that they should be more hungry for money than what is necessary, too. All levels of society want more, and of course the top does not get involved in changing its own success.

We are not just consumers and producers. We inhabit a planet, which we did not build ourselves, remember? The planet was given to all that live here. We are responsible for our own mess if we take too much.

  • Note how we do not give money to the planet, so our financial system is automatically lopsided.

We take from the planet more than it can handle. We got ourselves in a frenzy of more, more, more. Those that need more are found at all layers of society. Very few of us say “I had enough.”

We are no longer in sync with nature. We sped up and continue to speed up. The result is that we are the freaks of nature, not aligned with the natural clock of planet Earth any longer.

The worse part? Money is not even natural. We worship something as gods that we invented ourselves, and we don’t stop the worshipping, not even when it is destroying so much. We have become blind to our own invention.

The true needs of all human beings on the planet involve only a part of the global economy. Many of the goods we consume are unnecessary goods, though we consider them important when we buy them of course.

Some goods never came down in price, even when the producers received their fill of profits several times over. The producers of successful items are raking in the money for no other reason than their love for money (and their ignorance about the value of our planet). The price should come down of many products, but it doesn’t.

  • We contribute to global warming, abuse the planet with our over-consumption when we have the means to do so. Naturally, having more than two babies is also over-consumption. The third baby may be excused, but anyone having four or more babies is really not helping the planet [note: I am the fifth/5 baby].

Why do we not call out each other on our bad behaviors? Why are we contributing to the Great Speed-Up?

People are more afraid of being left behind than they are afraid of a future world in which their great-grand children have no real place to live.

  • There was a person on Easter Island who did indeed chop down the last tree. How short-sighted are we?

How many of us have their heads in the sand?

We are working too much.

Who made us get involved in this super-fast pace that is much faster than what we need and that is much faster than what the planet can take?

We see the damage plenty enough already. It is not like global warming is a bedtime story. It is real and it is keeping people up at night (and killing humans and other species, some in our past, more in the present, and a lot more in our future).

Why are we working this much?