The myth of “long hours = business/career success” has largely been debunked and nothing makes me happier.
Seeing successful founders and tech workers speak out against the daft propaganda is exactly what the industry needed to hear. Long hours are proof that something in your business or the business you’re working for is broken. It isn’t a badge of honour.
Still, I raise an eyebrow at claims that there is a set number of working hours we should all strive for, or that being at your desk in the evenings is wrong. While the 40 hour maximum is a sensible default base, there’ll be weeks where I only feel productive for half of that, or weeks when I enjoy doubling it, whether it’s all on a single project or a variety. Inspiration is a crazily effective motivation, and to not utilise it when it’s at its peak seems silly.
Long hours become dangerous when they become dictated by external demands. A simple rule; if it feels like work, recognise that you shouldn’t be working those extra hours, then look to fix it.
Ultimately, humans are inconsistent beings. While I don’t strive for long desk-bound days, sometimes they can be what I enjoy most.