Why I Like Not Working the 9 to 5

I haven’t talked a lot about my job on here, but I’ve mentioned once or twice that I basically work a non-traditional schedule. Forget the 9 to 5, I’m working a 3:30-11:30 am shift, including the normal weekend days.

Does it suck being at work when most people are still tucked into bed? How do I deal with having my days off on Mondays and Tuesdays when everyone else has normal weekends?

My "I hate being up hours before dawn" look. This didn't last too long, fortunately.

My “I hate being up hours before dawn” look. This didn’t last too long, fortunately.

No, it honestly doesn’t suck working weird hours and days! It did at first, but that’s because I was coming from the opposite shift (working 1:30-10:30 pm) and I had to get used to going to bed at 6 pm and getting ready for work before 3 am. I really thought I’d be chronically sleep-deprived because I felt zonked by the end of my shift every day. But trust me, your body adapts. And mine did after about a week or two.

And after that transition period, I began to see the perks of working a weird schedule. First of all, there’s no traffic when I leave for work. There are some random cars out on the streets (which creeps me out just a bit haha) but obviously no traffic jams and I pretty much always get the green light at all three traffic lights on my drive.

And it feels great to get home after work before noon and realize I have the rest of the afternoon to do whatever. Sure, I have to start getting ready for bed around 5, but I have those precious afternoon hours. And I definitely use them to my advantage. I hit the running trail across the street and have it mostly to myself (that might change with kids/teachers being out of school now). I can lay out by the pool on a random weekday afternoon and get the best sunlight hours and heat of the day.

Love having this view (almost) all to myself on my midday runs.

Love having this view (almost) all to myself on my midday runs.

As far as working on Saturday and Sunday, I actually love it. The morning show team I work with is great — they always make me laugh and we get along really well. And it’s a lot less stressful than during the week. Without any managers around, we can do a lot more without feeling scrutinized. And I still technically can enjoy the weekend — I get off work at 10 or 11 and then usually run errands, fit in a run or a gym session and pool time.

And working those weekends mean my days off are during the traditional work week, which is also great. While everyone else is working, I can go to the mall, or do some meal prep at home or basically whatever other people do during the weekend, but I get more satisfaction knowing that those days are my weekend. Of course, it’s also a lot better for scheduling appointments. I shouldn’t have to take time off work to see the doctor or take my car in for an oil change because I have two weekdays off to do that kind of stuff.

Or I can go to a juice bar on a random Monday afternoon on my way to do some window shopping.

Or I can go to a juice bar on a random Monday afternoon on my way to do some window shopping.

It’s crazy what a little shift in perspective will do. I remember when my supervisor called me to say that my schedule was changing (and originally it was only supposed to be for the month of May) to early mornings. I called my mom immediately and started crying about how much life sucked. Well, work still isn’t ideal for other reasons, but I’m learning to love my crazy schedule. I’m getting used to my ‘grandma’ bedtime and eating my breakfast at 4 am. I’m looking forward to my days off and secretly laughing at everyone who hates Mondays, because they’re my Saturdays. There’s always something positive to be found in every situation, and I’m so glad I was able to do just that!

Have you ever worked a non-traditional schedule? 

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11 thoughts on “Why I Like Not Working the 9 to 5

  1. It is kind of nice to work weird schedules. I’m still in a part-time thing, and this quarter I had 6:45-9:45, same as last quarter. Then I’m done with class around noon or two depending on the day and I have the rest of the afternoon to do whatever. It’s a nice feeling to get everything done early and know you can pretty much just relax for the rest of the day.

    • That’s a nice schedule! I really don’t think I’d ever like to work 9-5 just because of having to deal with everything being busy when I get off work. I pretty much never deal with traffic, or anyone in the gym or by the pool with my weird schedule and I like it that way.

  2. P says:

    I am so glad you were able to look on the bright side of things! Plus, the reasons you list are very good reasons to prefer something over the usual 9 to 5 shift!

  3. Wow I’m not sure I could do your work hours! It’s interesting how the body can adapt to situations though, and I’m glad you’ve found a good balance! Does it weird you out to go to bed while it’s still light outside? That would be the part I couldn’t get past.

    • That part still is weird to me! I usually use a sleep mask to block out the light if it’s really sunny, but since I’m up so early, I usually have no problems being able to fall asleep in the late afternoon.

  4. Aww…this makes me so happy! I love that you’ve adapted and are making the most of a wonky schedule. Happiness is all about perspective. (:

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