Work and leisure patterns and globalisation

Societies among the world have undergone drastic changes throughout the years; these changes may be political, social, economic, demographic, or even environmental. Also under these several changes is the way we value our time—our time for work as well as our time for leisure and recreation. Social and technological changes have changed our way of life. Some opted to stay almost the whole inside their work place while some prefer having more time for recreation and leisure. Economic factors and dictations may also be a factor on what option should an individual would take.

Logically speaking, more time for work would mean less time for leisure and recreation and vice versa. In the past, we have witnessed individuals giving much priority to the required time of the work place. The society dictates then the importance of being economically stable ignoring the importance of having leisure and recreational activities. Undeniably, there is a connection between work and leisure; regarding the wide aspects of the term “work”, people can be divided into two groups: leisure oriented and work oriented.

Unfortunately, amidst the busy environment of the world, some people ignore the importance and benefits of having time to relax or spending a little time for leisure’s sake. Some forget that leisure is not just mere wasting one’s time but it is an opportunity to “re-charge” your energy after spending mush time to work or at home. Spending time for leisure is actually a preparation for a more productive self in the future. “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#2 Leisure and Recreation Leisure can be defined as those activities done for pleasure purposes only which do not involve family and work responsibilities.

Leisure activities are usually done to break free from the stressful environment of the workplace as well as of the home. Recreation is basic need of all humans despite different ages and interests which is important to the social, psychological, and physical being of man (National Recreation Statement, 1987). Thus, a day or more are devoted to activities which spell fun and break. Leisure and recreational activities also serve as time to relax and the “re-charge” after the stressful environment of the workplace and home.

We usually consider out-of-town trips as a form of relaxation, leisure or recreation. Unconsciously, leisure and recreation activities bring benefits not just to the group involved but to the society as well. Leisure and Recreation among societies Particular nations around the globe put much importance of having leisure and recreational activities. Several international studies have been made in support of the benefits of having leisure and recreational activities. Studies have been conducted on the effects of recreational and leisure activities among students.

Their study revealed that these kinds of activities surprisingly make the rate of school dropouts to decrease (Mahoney and Cairns 1997). “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#3 In Ireland, a study investigated the supports and barriers as well as the opportunities of having recreational and leisure activities. Their survey involved 2, 260 young individuals with ages between 12 and 18 (de Roiste and Dinneen, 2005). Some of the activities that the respondents are involved with are listening to music, watching television, and hanging around with friends.

Most of the respondents believe that there is a little opportunity within their area to conduct recreational and leisure activities. Meanwhile, respondents who have financial difficulties are most likely to avoid recreational and leisure activities; while those living in rural areas complain that they transportation difficulties thus serve as a barrier in the recreational and leisure activities. Moreover, a study was conducted on the dependency of recreational and leisure activities on poverty and social exclusion (Daly and Leonard 2002).

The research study involved 30 Irish urban and rural families who are cloaked in poverty. Findings of the study showed that respondents who are 12 to 16 years of age are usually engaged in recreational and leisure activities which are not structured. Only two out of the 25 adolescents are engaged in structured recreational and leisure activities. “Hanging around with friends” is the usual activity of the respondents. In Canada, citizens are tasked to do their own planning of their leisure and recreational activities. The changes happening in the society of Canada has also brought changes in the Canadian workforce.

Unemployment and underemployment may cause serious effects among other people; others view these situations as opportunity to have more challenges. Studies show that there people who actually opt to work less for them to have more quality time with their family and to spend some time with their own personal interests. “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#4 Disappointingly, such a social order is not yet fully accepted by the society as it is viewed as something that is not in line with our social norms. The exiting “social institutions” are perilously not apt to the current needs of the citizens.

The individuals within the society must learn how to adapt to certain social conditions for us to be able to achieve social change (Toffler 1983). In Canada focusing on the recreation needs and the behavior of the unemployed persons, based on a study, and some of the conclusions are as follows: • Rather than working alone, people seem to feel their own personal meanings during recreational and leisure activities. • Given the current social order and the economic environment that we have, the recreation delivery system has not responded to our needs adequately (Reid, 1987).

“Free time” refers to the time which remained after accomplishing tasks related to “paid labour,” “unpaid household chores” and other “personal care” (Goodin, 2005). Some people tend to work longer for them to veer away from poverty. Hence, their time for leisure and recreation suffers. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) conducted the 1992 Australian Time Use Survey which was aimed to evaluate the “time pressures” made by the concurrence of paid and unpaid household labour. The survey involved 7,056 individuals who are 15 years of age and older.

The survey focused on nuclear families as to avoid conflicts on how do responsibilities on the household and income is shared. The respondents of the study were asked to keep of a written account of what they do everyday. Their account should indicate the starting and ending points of each activity within five minutes. “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#5 In cases where there are respondents who are practice “multi-tasking” or they are doing tasks simultaneously, they are asked to list their “main activity” and “what else they were doing.

” The respondents involved in the study were also interviewed for the researcher to know their basic background information like age, employment, sex, income, and so on. The answers of the respondents pertaining to their activities were actually grouped into different categories. The categories include: “time spent in paid labour,” “time spent in unpaid household labour,” and the last, “time spent in personal care. ” The remaining times were under “free time. ” Work Patterns Much has been written about the sociology of leisure and work.

The usual definitions of work revolve around paid labour and employment with wage. During the 1970s, there were almost the same average working hours for the persons in the United States and in Europe. However, after some decades, the trend had drastically changed as the average working hours of individuals in Europe became only the half of the average working hours of the people in the United States (Alesina, Glaesar, and Sacerdote, 2005). These differences may be brought about by the “enormous” differences between the labor supply of Germany and France and the United States (Prescott, 2004).

Economies may be categorized into sub-categories which involve paid labor or simply, work (Pahl and Gershuny, 1980): “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#6 • Formal economy- a kind of economy which is recognised by the government with work recorded in official statistics. • Informal economy- this is usually called the black market economy. People working in this kind of economy evade tax that the government imposes. They are not also declaring earnings. • Household economy- this kind of economy pertains to the work accomplished within the household by its members.

• Communal economy- these include works done voluntarily. Meanwhile, there are three identified work patterns: extension pattern, neutrality pattern, and the opposition pattern (Hulme, 2000). In the extension pattern, work is extended into recreational or leisure activities. Individuals have autonomy, job satisfaction, and even a high degree of involvement. Examples of the occupations under this are: social works, business, and teaching. Work is more prioritized than any other else including family and leisure. Individuals with an extended work pattern usually do not have much time for leisure intended for their personal development.

On the other hand, individuals with a neutrality pattern of work ha a clear understanding or distinction between leisure and work. Their time for their family and leisure are equally the focus of their lives. Their occupations usually are usually of low autonomy and their job satisfaction is with wage and conditions not in the work itself. Their occupations may be into clerical worker or any semi-skilled manual job. Individuals who have this kind of work pattern have longer hours from recreational and leisure activities intended for relaxation. Meanwhile, those individuals who have an opposition work pattern put recreation and

“WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#7 leisure at the center of their lives. Their work is vividly different from mere leisure. Their occupations usually have a very low of autonomy which makes them hostile toward their jobs. Their hours devoted for leisure and very long. Their occupations may involve the usual unskilled manual work. Work pattern may refer to the concept of being part time or full time in work; or to the number of hours an individual devote to his work. Work patterns may vary among individuals and societies as there are different natures of jobs.

Among the known working patterns are: • Short-time work • Regular day time hours • Regular night time hours • Week end work • Shift work • Flexible working hours • Work with deferred work periods Also, there are circumstances in which working hours are divided in a day by long pauses or termed as the “split shift. ” This situation is usual among countries with a relatively hot climate and among individuals who are into social care and even public transport. As industrialisation is becoming more evident around the globe, changes in the work patterns are also becoming evident just like in Japan.

In Japan, the usual office hours is nine to six and their overtime is between two and three hours. These working patterns in Japan led to crowded trains and made the women “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#8 from their career tracks because of their family. Publication companies based in Japan that have obviously tight deadlines to follow cannot afford to pay the over time pay of their employees. Employees in publication companies practically have to work non stop to comply with the deadlines that they have.

But because the budget of the majority of the companies is not enough, they have resorted lately to let their employees work using “flexible time models. ” These flexible time models will allow each employee to make up for their over time before the deadline that has to be met on days after. Thus, the company will only pay as if the employees only worked for eight hours each day. This serves as one of the austerity measures of the private companies in Japan. This seems disadvantageous on the side of the employees. While they are underpaid and overworked, their time for recreational and leisure activities are eaten up by their work.

However, this flexible time model turned out to be illegal in Japan. In the present Labour Law Standards Law enacted in 1946, during the time when workers are into manufacturing, the work and leisure are clear-cut. The time spent in the work place should be equal to the output of the employee. There is an average of fourty hours of overtime among civil workers in Kasumigaseki and for the majority of the companies, the over time is even higher. If these companies would actually pay for the time spent in the work place of their employees, they are most likely to face financial problems (Nikkei Shinbun, 2006).

Because of the labour law that is no longer applicable to the current situation, the Labour Policy Advisory Council is now deliberating the “White Collar Exemption” just like what has been adopted in the United States. The executives working in offices “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#9 will be able to set their flexible hours in work for them to be able to compensate for their overtime. Tourism and Globalisation Tourism increases decreases our reliance on local resources like food, technologies, among others. Also, tourism increases the dependence of the local economy to the global market.

People of the locality will also be pushed to sell out and the prices of the services, as well as the commodities, may rise. We have witnessed different groups that are formed protesting the concept of “globalization. ” Globalisation mainly pushes for free trade and the regional agreements like the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade or GATT and the European Union. Organizations against globalisation claim that promoting expanded economy units will just result to urbanization which in essence, will destroy the wilderness and rural communities of the world.

Meanwhile, proponents said that globalisation will bring us “global cooperation” and prosperity in the long run. However, according to the International Society for Ecology and Culture, what the proponents are saying are much far from the reality. Expanding the economy units and increasing the level of world trades would mean and greater gap between the rich and the poor. More so, it could lead to environmental degradation, and progress of big corporation in expense of the citizens of the world. Tourism is a vital factor in international relations. Tourism serves as a huge business for private companies as well as for the government.

“WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#10 Work, Leisure, and Globalisation Globalisation may be defined as the “global connectivity” among nations which concerns technological, ecological, social, economic, political, and cultural spheres. The term “globalisation” originated way back in the 20th century when there no still consciousness among the nations of the world about the concept. Despite its other concerns, globalisation is mostly being related to the economic interdependency of nations. Some economic factors that are usually related with globalisation are: goods and services, capital, labour, and technology.

Globalisation promised the nations of the world more employment opportunities, economic progress, and social development, among others. Several debates and arguments have been heard from the opposing groups who are pushing and taking stand against the globalisation. In the long run, globalization may affect the work and leisure patterns of the societies around the globe. We have seen how globalisation affected the work patterns in the different parts of the world. We know that globalization mainly talks about economic development. Hence, this may mean more job opportunities and more load of work for the citizens of the

world. Our time will be spent more in the work place than in having more recreational and leisure activities. Globalisation would mean less time to relax. In the context of globalization, less recreational and leisure activities would mean more work and money. Conclusion As expected, globalisation has an adverse effect on our work and leisure patterns. “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#11 Though proponents of globalisation argue that globalisation is the betterment of each nation in the world, we cannot deny the fact that it has also negative effects.

Often neglected by some societies, work and leisure patterns truly affect our productivity as a nation. We have heard arguments from the anti-globalisation groups that extending the economy units if each country would only harm the countries that do not have stable economies yet. Also the political and cultural aspects of each nation in the world will be greatly affected. Globalisation not only intervenes in the economic autonomy of each country but also in the political and cultural characteristics of a nation.

Although some may not be conscious of the changes that have been or would soon be taking place due to globalisation, we must remain watchful of these changes that would soon effects us as individuals. By this, it means that certain social practices will be affected by globalisation. We do not know up to what extent does globalisation will “invade” each nation. What is evident is that globalisation will make the norms and usual activities of a nation will be subjected to change. As leisure tourism is connected with the political and cultural landscape of a nation, globalisation will also have adverse effect on it.

On the political aspect, the policies that will be implemented will have higher risks of having provisions that will only benefit the “outsider nations” rather than its inhabitants. Profit will the main concern of the policymakers since it is the primary concern of the proponents of globalisation. The welfare of the citizens of the country will be neglected. Although globalisation may indeed give more employment opportunities within the locality “WORK ANDLEISURE PATTERN AND GLOBALISATION” Page#12 of leisure tourism, we cannot deny the possibility of higher prices of commodities and degradation of the localities’ natural resources.

On the cultural aspect, meanwhile, the cultural orientation of the localities might change because of globalisation. Leisure tourists’ spots might be adopted according to the needs of the foreigners while serving their interests instead of the locality. This means that globalisation, later on, will greatly influence the work and leisure patterns of each citizen around the world. Leisure, indeed, has been ignored by some as they opt to have a higher earning. But then, leisure is a “way of being”; it is of great help for us to be more productive as we go back to work.

The quality of the “free time” that we could get mainly depends on the individual and the society—in a larger scale. In the end, we should not let globalisation “eat” much of our time. We should put importance to the vitality of having some time for relaxation and leisure. References: _________ (2006) “Leisure for Pleasure…How to Take Charge of Your Leisure Time” [Online] Available at: http://www. warrenshepell. com/WCMS/EN-CA/Employees+and+Families+Home/Wellness+Articles/HealthQuest+Newsletter/_Leisure+For+Pleasure+How+To+Take+Charge+Of+Your+Leisure+Time. htm __________.

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