Alternative work models: the theory of The exit

For some, Downshifting an emergency brake, you will feel overwhelmed and burned out. Others choose from the desire for less work. The dream of Downshifting: N

Alternative work models: the theory of The exit

For some, Downshifting an emergency brake, you will feel overwhelmed and burned out. Others choose from the desire for less work.

The dream of Downshifting: Not more driven cog in the wheel photo: Courtesy of the Everett Collection

Eva box (53, not his real Name) could not be more simple. She has worked for almost twenty years full time in a Berlin kindergarten as an educator. With a lot of effort and for little money. You could have been a year ago, head of the nursery. More work, more responsibility, a little more money. She realized that the Job ate it slowly. There is no Burn-out, it wasn't, but she no longer wanted to live.

Now she works only half a day. It was, she says, "a difficult decision". She felt responsible for the day-care centre. The money is not enough now just. Your car has to be abolished, the holiday is only a low budget is possible. In order to cope. The luxury to have a lot of free time, compensate you for it. She plays in a Club of chess and moves a lot in the area. Old dreams that cost nothing. Fear makes you sometimes the views of the small pension. Nevertheless, "it was right,"she says.

field is part of the down shiftern, without more or less voluntarily to money and career, in order to have more time. Both the concept and the term come from California. It's a promise: to get Out of the rat race, finally into the open. A Motto of the down shifter movement is, in effect: "life is the standard, if you with money you don't have things to buy, you don't need, to impress people you don't like".

people who switch in, Germany down, do this, roughly speaking, for two reasons. For some, it is the handle for the emergency brake, you will feel overwhelmed, overworked, burnt out. Others choose from the desire for less work. It is often, as in the case of Eva field, a mixture of both.

During Christmas for some, the epitome of gift madness and gluttony is, others are aware of the opposite: An empty home apply some as a status symbol. Others feel digital overwhelmed and do without a Smartphone. Others find that they consume in everyday life, too much plastic. After decades of a barely braked consumer enthusiasm of conscious waiver is announced. A shaft mucking out and tidying up goes by the households. Others want more time for themselves and dispense even more work, but also on wages. In a series, the taz presents the various currents of the new abstinence.

Downshifting Coaches to help in the often complex decision-making processes. The consultants often make a similar experience with your clients. Many come with the pressing desire to escape the corset of the work, and want to do everything differently. However, the majority of the trust at the end only small Changes, to renounce a career move, or to say right now, no Overtime. It is no coincidence that the English terms Downshifting, and Sabbatical leave – an unpaid work – free year-no useful German words.

surveys expressed regularly to take each and every Second, like a year off. However, gape at the Sabbatical, such as when Downshifting between desire and fact, large gaps. Many want, but few do it. Eva's field is an exception.

teachers, PolizstInnen, civil servants have, for decades, the possibility of a one-year free up. The model: you get four years, only 75 percent of the salary for the Sabbatical to the same amount. However, the resonance is manageable, although in the public service to return to your old Job is often secured. In lower Saxony, in 2018, three police officers took a Sabbatical of 22,000.

As a self-contradiction occurs. The Germans tick post material, if you believe the polls. You don't keep possession of money, work for is as important as personal happiness. More than 80 percent say in surveys for decades, that you friends and family are most important to you. Two-thirds is social justice at the heart. And only a minority, namely, a third, a good income is essential in life.

The old virtues of industrial society – of duty, ambition, rise – apply already for a long time. Self-realization is the new Norm.

However, there is a remarkable contradiction between the stable post-material self-image of the center of the society and the reality of the world of work. In Germany, working more and more. 2018, more than 61 billion hours were worked in 2010 to 58 billion. The number of socially-insured Jobs has increased in the same period, from 28 to 34 Million.

working Time radically less appears to many as a logical way to lead a good life. It is within our grasp, and yet strangely out of reach. Downshifting and Sabbatical leave are like the ciphers of a society, the dream is to escape the constraints of the world of work, and work crashes.

Updated Date: 05 January 2020, 16:00

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