Think you’re working too hard here in the US? Or maybe you’re some sick bastard who isn’t working enough?

Life’s not the same around the globe. Other countries tend to value work very differently.

Maybe you could find your ideal working conditions here (from

South Korea: According to an interesting article on, South Korea was a completely destitute company with a practically non-existent economy around 40 years ago. Today, through government regulation and the high-technology and industrial production boom, this country enjoys the world’s 10th largest economy.

But they aren’t really enjoying too much. Apparently, all that growth has made everyone in South Korea a workaholic. South Koreans work 195 hours per month on average, compared with the average American who works 144 hours.

They are even taking after Japan with work-stress related deaths. It’s called gwarosa, and amounts to heart attacks or strokes induced by freaking out about your job too much. Jeez, relax, Koreans. Someone needs to tell humanitarian aid to dump a cargo plane full of stress balls over there in Seoul.

France: The Frenchies take it a little bit easier. Back in 1996, the Frogs were suffering a 12% unemployment rate in their country. Which is pretty substantial and leads to plenty of other socials ills. To combat this, the government shortened the work week from 40 to 35 hours. That way companies would be forced to hire more people to complete the same jobs.

It worked and the French were able to indulge in their extravagant relaxing lifestyles even more. Lunch at the top of the Eiffel Tower, picnics in the park, espresso with a croissant, shopping for baguettes and berets, and all those other hopelessly inaccurate stereotypes.

In recent months, French President Nicholas Sarkozy has been attempting to repeal this imposed shortened work week, in the hopes that it will help bolster more economic growth.

So if you’d like to work 5 hours less each week and you have a thing for tight horizontally striped shirts, France may be a good move for you.

Samoa: If that’s even too strenuous for your delicate psyche, try moving to Samoa where they only work on average 30 hours a week and 125 a month.

This is a place where tourism dollars and tropical weather are adundant, and also for some reason, American football is huge. According to an interesting article on ESPN, a Samoan male is 40 times more likely to play in the NFL than a non-Samoan American. Weird. But just look at Troy Polamalu of the Pittsburgh Steeler and Junior Seau of the New England Patriots as some case examples.

So maybe my advice for this one is to move here if you want to work very little and also raise children to be top NFL prospects.

Let us know in the comments section if any of this sounds like your cup of tea.

Minyanville: No Country For Some Men, February 2008