Everyone fortunate enough to be employed works a lot. The usual 9-5 means we work around 40 hours a week, but in reality we work much more. Many of us want to work fewer hours, but working fewer hours needs planning and preparation. Being able to work less hours is possible, but it cannot happen overnight. Although with some of the strategies outlined below it can be achieved.


Reducing your hours at work

Your first step is reducing your hours at work. This might include telecommuting, where immediately a saving is made as you gain your travel time. You may also be able to cut the length of your lunchtime, allowing you to knock off half an hour earlier. Small steps like this add up over time and will cut your work hours.


Reducing your need to work

Most of us like our work, but the primary goal is to provide money. You may be able to work part-time if you can cut your outgoings. Take a fine tooth comb to your finances and examine if there are items you can do without. Your yearly exotic holiday could be replaced by a less expensive alternative saving you thousands. Spending less on food and consumer goods will also provide a dramatic drop in spending. A key philosophy is "if it aint broke, it doesn't need replacing". In other words you should only purchase new things when the old things break and cannot be fixed economically.


Outsourcing to work less

There are now plenty of sites offering inexpensive outsourcing of basic work. You should check with your employer before you do this but tasks like sorting through emails, creating to do lists and more can all be done over the internet by people working in your own country or abroad. If you can have your outsourced worker complete these tasks before you start work in the morning, you could cut your workload in the day. Combine this with telecommuting and no-one need be the wiser.


Developing a passive income

A passive income stream is one which generates an income with no or very little active effort. Examples include writing for blogs or sites like InfoBarrel. If you have invested and get regular dividends from stocks and shares, or have large savings with lots of interest, this extra money will help you to work less and potentially part-time, achieving the goal of working less hours.


Physically reducing your hours at work is a difficult process that requires lots of patience and planning. Maintaining the same income is challenging but if you use passive income then it is possible to increase you earnings. Do you do anything to work less hours? Got any other hints or tips? Write them in the comments below.