Because of a big project deadline, the employees had been asked to work double shifts for the next few days.
“That’s it, I’m going home,” one employee said to his colleague.
“But there are three more hours left in our shift,” the co-worker replied.
“Well, I’m exhausted now. Come to think of it, I’ll take tomorrow off, too. Watch this,” the worker said as he grabbed a lampshade and covered his head with it and stood atop a ladder in the center of the room.
The manager walked in, gasped, and said, “What on earth are you doing up there?”
“Isn’t it obvious? I’m a lightbulb,” the worker replied.
“Good grief,” the manager said. “You’ve worked so long you’ve gone mad. Come down from there, and then take the rest of the day off. While you’re at it, take tomorrow off, too.”
The worker descended the ladder and began to walk away with the lampshade still on his head. His colleague decided to follow him out.
“Just where do you think you’re going?” asked the manager.
“I’m taking the rest of the day off, too,” the co-worker replied. “I can’t work in the dark.”
We’ve all felt overworked at some point in our lives. The 40-hour work week certainly isn’t standard in the United States. In fact, a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics chart indicates the average American works 44 hours a week. A Gallup poll I found listed it as 47 hours a week.
Extra hours don’t necessarily translate to more productivity. In fact, you might even feel overworked if you work less than 40 hours a week. Feeling overworked can lead to exhaustion, stress, anxiety, irritability, burnout, lack of sleep, poor health, absenteeism, turnover, workplace conflicts … and psychiatric problems like thinking you’re a light bulb.