Work To Death

The corporate world is destroying the best of humanity by demanding an excessive work load. This article will explore the current situation and offer a feasible and practical way to reverse this downward spiral.

For the purpose of this discussion, we will divide people into two groups, those who care and those who do not. This article is about the people who care about their job and their responsibilities and work at a management or executive level in larger corporations.

These are the people who guide and lead those below them in the company and have to implement the rules from above. These are the people who are intelligent, creative, hard working, and desire to be useful and productive with their life. In a word, they care.

The saddest part of the increasing degradation of the quality of life is that the better the person is, the one with more integrity, sense of responsibility, honour and devotion, is the one who suffers the most because that kind of person wants to get all the work done on time and as required. Basically, the better quality of character you are, the more you suffer.

Let’s use the example of the clothing factory in the old communist Russia. One would be given a quota of, for example, 100 shirts to produce in a day. If they produced 100 shirts, the quota would be raised to 102 for the next day. If that were met, it would be raised to 105.

Every time you met your quota, the assumption was that you’re capable of working harder so management would increase the demand.

However, if you made 98 shirts, that would be close enough to the target so you would not get in trouble, yet shows that this must be your maximum capacity. The quota remained the same. And so, the smart ones paced themselves out.

The western corporate world is the same. If you are devoted to completing the job, even if that means working all night and on the weekends, The blind bosses will increase your work load as they will see you as capable of getting the job done and not need extra help.

Head office only sees that the project is completed on time as required at the end of every month and they have no regard for how many, or how few, people work, or for how long. Their only goal is to deliver the reports to shareholders.

Upper management needs to be trained to reduce their demands which are destroying your life.

At a construction project in Thailand, workers were high up on bamboo scaffolding with no safety ropes or security. When asked what would happen if one fell and broke his leg for example, thinking in a western way of liability, the project manager said that it was no problem, the man’s brother would come and take his place.

The corporate world is no different. When you are high up enough in the plane, or the office tower, everyone down below looks just like ants.

I have seen too many high quality people die or become severely ill in their 40’s and 50’s because of this abuse, as I am sure many of you readers have. One of my students who was an executive at an international corporation changed his life when a coworker died of a heart attack at 41 years old.

A Way To Change

I am proposing the start of a movement that all overworked corporate executives begin to live a proper life and not work until completion of the project to show that the demands are unreasonable and must be reduced or more support staff provided.

Yes, one person can be fired and replaced, but not a whole team. In order for this change to succeed, it requires enough people within each company to band together and make their unified replacement more costly than the change. Or you can just quit and find a better place to work, which works fine if you can. I have helped many people find a new job or start their own business, so that is always a good option.

Consider the Indian man who conquered the British empire, when that was a true global empire. Mahatma Gandhi, a man of no substantial means, but of infinitely strong character, inspired by the abuse of the Indian people, achieved independence of India from British rule. Amazing change can be achieved if you are determined, or fed up, enough.

It’s up to you to change the direction of your increasingly shortening lifespan due to stress as well as not enjoying a moment of your life or your family.

Your life is in your hands as ethic #1 says: Accept Full Responsibility For Everything In Your Life.

Do not live by fear or intimidation. If we join together and make this a global concept for managers, executives and company workers, change must take place and we can return to living as human beings instead of slaves worked to the death.

Let’s look at the statistics. The number one cause of death globally in all ages is coronary heart disease and number two is stroke (2). You know where you feel it when you are stressed, in your heart and in your head.

Focusing on the USA, if we remove accidents and poisoning which may be accidental, suicide is the number one cause of death in ages 15 to 35 and number two after breast cancer in ages 35 to 44. It drops down to number 5 as we reach the 45 plus age group as Heart disease and Stroke, as well as cancer move up the list.

This makes sense as at that age people have children and will stay alive for their sake but increase the stress from demands of the job as they move up the corporate ladder.

These statistics are shocking but clear, life is simply too stressful as we move up in the company.

The Simple Principle of Life

Everything in our world follows a simple principle of cause and effect. If we want to fix any problem, we must understand the cause in order to find a cure.

Stress is caused by pressure to have the basics; food, clothing and shelter. We need to work to make the money to pay for those things. But humans always want more and better, and so we work harder to raise our position to make more money to have more comfort and security. This is normal and nothing at all wrong with it, it inspires progress and evolution.

We must also look at the other vital part of being human, which is having a mate, companion, someone to share life with to make it all worthwhile. And that leads us to review the incredible and still increasing divorce rate.

What causes divorce? Stress. The pressures and demands of life that prevent a couple from having the precious time together to build on their love. The higher the workload, the more stress and less time a person has, and this is not at all gender specific any more. New inventions such as the concept of ‘date night’ have been created to help a couple spend some time together. What kind of life are we living when a married couple has to put in effort to have one night a week that they will not work so they can spend that together.

I worked with a man who had a wife that wanted him to make more money. So he asked the boss for more hours to get extra overtime pay. He made the money but she then divorced him because he was not home enough.

It’s time to get back to being human. Time to start working to live and not live to work. Time to stop the madness, the stress related diseases, the stress and work priorities that cause divorces and suicide. It’s time for a peaceful and wise executive level revolution.

Work reasonable hours, stop when the work day is done, go back to the 9 to 5 life, and in time things will get better for everyone. Consider it an act of charity if not for yourself, because doing this will create more jobs, and that seems to be a very powerful motivating force, enough to even become President.

Reference links:

(1) Ethicalism org

(2) Source:




David Samuel is The Entrepreneur Monk, applying his understanding of the mind and emotions in business, relationships and personal growth.
Your mind makes you a success or failure, business skill is only a small part.
David resolved the riddle of why we do what is bad for us yet do not do what we know is beneficial and teaches that very effectively.
Read more about David
Have No Regrets, Look Forward