This is my first blog entry in relation to my dream to move and live in Spain. Over time I hope to develop my knowledge of Spain, its culture, customs and its language. In the meantime I will keep my eyes open for appropriate and interesting articles to start the ball rolling. Are you moving or living in Spain, if you have interesting stories or have information then please pass it on to ACOMSDave and his Viva Espana.
Want a great work-life balance? Then head to Spain
Author: Ian Clover | June 15th, 2015
There are many Brits who live on the Costa del Sol who never intended for their extended holiday to turn into a decade-long spell in Spain. Those early, carefree days of life in Spain can stretch out across the long and languid summer like the calm seas of the glistening Mediterranean, but there is always that nagging voice inside saying “this will not – cannot – last!”
But while expats who treat life on the Costa del Sol as one long, sun-kissed holidayare in for a shock, those prepared to balance living life with knuckling down will find that Spain is actually one of the best places in the world to strike the right balance…
A recent report published by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has found that Spain ranks second behind Denmark at delivering the best work-life balance in the world.
Denmark is a fine country, with excellent public services, high wages and superb beer, but its climate gives Scotland a run for its money in the ‘bleak and chilly’ stakes. Spain, blessed with abundant sunshine and the highest average temperatures in Europe, is a fantastic place in which to enjoy the ideal work-life balance.
According to the study, Spaniards who work full time actually devoted a greater portion of their day to personal care and pursuing leisure activities than any other nation in the world, racking up an impressive 16 hours a day doing things like sports, hobbies, dining, sleeping, meeting with friends or spending time with family.
What’s more, just six per cent of Spaniards worked more than 50 hours a week. And if you’re thinking that this may play a part in Spain’s recent economic woes, then think again – rich, stable, prosperous Denmark has just two per cent of its workforceclocking up more than 50 hours at work each week.
“Finding a suitable balance between work and life is a challenge for all workers, especially working parents,” said the OECD report. “The ability to successfully combine work, family commitments and personal life is important for the well-being of all members in a household.
“Evidence suggests that long work hours may impair personal health, jeopardise safety and increase stress.”
The report formed part of the OECD’s ‘Better Life Index’, which ranks the quality of living in all OECD member nations. Spain scored highly in many other areas, including housing – the country has some of Europe’s finest, most affordable property – community and health, with Spaniards living longer than most other nationalities in the world.
However, there is still room for improvement, with Spain performing below-average on environmental quality, education and income. These things, however, are all improving as the country continues its economic recovery.
The finer things in life – friends, family, health and happiness – Spain already gets right, although most Spaniards would admit that an extra bit of cash in their pocket each month would not go amiss…