Happy Labor Day – The View of an Outsider!
Labor Day gives everyone an extra (Mon)day off in the US and Canada. In the UK people are used to 4 weeks of Holiday annually as opposed to the 2 weeks in the US and Canada – my first thought was wow this has got to be a seriously precious day off.
So what’s different about this little blog over all the others?
Well for a start it’s written by a Brit so it’s based on conversations with gorgeous Americans and Canadians, and it’s through the eyes of someone new to Labor Day – an outsider looking in. It’s all very interesting – after all what isn’t accessible via the internet today and by being bit of a chatterbox in conversations.
I found out it began in Canada and then picked up in the US where the first Labor Day celebration was traced back to 5 th Sept 1882, exactly a 134 years ago from this Labor Day. Definitely an established tradition, and I hope everyone going to this Monday’s Labor Day Parade in New York has a fabulous time. Now please excuse me for any inaccuracies and I welcome corrections via our Facebook page. We would love to hear from you, especially if you’re in a fabulous mood having begun the holiday.
Labor Day is a celebration of the social and economic achievements of the workforce, and was originally just for those in labouring or physical jobs. There was a time when people regularly worked 12 hour days 7 days a week – if we factor in 7 hours for sleep that leaves just 5 hours for travel to and from work, all other activities, and family. Put another way for the number crunchers out there, that’s an 84 hour working week, or 4,200 hours per year out of the 8,736 hours available while awake and asleep! 4,200 by the way is the equivalent of 25 weeks of non-stop work without sleep.
Wow that put’s it all into perspective hasn’t it?
Thankfully a new law, the Adamson Act, was passed in September 1916 to establish an 8 hour working day. Good news hey! Or is it? How many of you out there work just 8 hours, 5 days a week, and not a minute more? Or rather should I be asking how many of you consistently work well over that number of hours? In today’s competitive and commercialised world it’s easy to do this right?
Remember working just half an hour extra a day amounts to an extra half day a week, an extra 2 days over a month, and approximately an extra 2 weeks a year. Let’s park that thought for a bit while we look at something else.
Now in terms of the gender debate or conversation I think it’s incredibly interesting how Labor Day is as important for women as men. Of the 123 million women aged 16 years and over in the U.S., 72 million, or 58.6 %, were labor force participants – working or looking for work. Women comprised 47% of the total U.S. labour force. Women are projected to account for 51% of the increase in the total labour force growth leading up to 2018*. In Canada the picture mirrors this where women form 47.2% of the total labor force. Canada has a national goal of 30% women on boards by 2019, and at present it is almost to 21 percent**. That’s a lot of working women. Although this is very thought provoking, let’s move on to a more fun thought after these rather stark statistics hey.
This holiday was created to give people a whole day off to do what matters most to them. So it’s no surprise that what’s most important to the majority of people is ‘other people’ – their families, friends. What’s also important to people is to have fun or do things that make them feel good such as picnics, traveling, parades and parties, and sports. With the numbers above I can imagine that seeing one’s family for a whole day would seem like a monumental occasion when one may not have seen them for several months, for more than a few hours at any one time.
In England one can cross parts of the country in just a few hours’ drive, and fly across from one end to the other in just as little time. Whereas it blows my mind just how huge and vast the lands of the US and Canada are, so if your family lives in another state this will be the weekend it’s possible to go visit because you have 3 days right.
So taking all of the above into consideration it is the considered opinion of this Brit that it is only right Labor Day (weekend) be an awesome celebration. And I wish each and every one of you a truly fantastic time with your loved ones, doing what you love. If you happen to be at a sporting event then I wish I was there! But have you noticed how 3 days can literally just fly by?
Now if you have got the taste for feeling good, taking a break and spending time with those dear to you, you may be beginning to feel the benefits of downtime, and of fun time (which is just plain relaxing and nurturing). If this is the case, you may want to take a look at how ‘you’ can take it to the next level. Now what do I mean by the next level? I mean ramping up the feel good factor so it lasts beyond a few days, increasing the extent to which you feel nurtured so you can give more, filling in the emotional spaces left empty by endless hours of being busy by being with amazing people that will become like extending your family. The sum total of all of this is to end up simply feeling great in every way, and to feel able to be just still in that peaceful and blissful state – something sustainable.
I’m going to speak directly to the ladies right now – guys don’t worry there is something in the works for you for next year, but you will know wonderful ladies that this is perfect for, so stay with me just a little longer.
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Think of lavishing yourself in that feeling and learning lots of ‘tools’ on how you can recreate little windows of heavenly peace for yourself time and time again. All this in the beautiful town of Paestum, Italy which remains intact from any earthly disasters and the like. If you want all of this and more then you want to come to the Goddess Retreat especially designed for women to re-access their most beautiful selves and go home completely revamped, having been nurtured by the best.
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*Women’s U.S. Bureau – Quick facts on Women in the Labor Force in…
**Catalyst Org – Statistical Overview Women in Workforce