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Good on Kochie and Mark McGowan for quitting - if only we all could

Public figures aren't the only ones feeling exhausted in today's world.

OPINION

All I can say is mega bravo – and half your luck! On the same day David "Kochie" Koch said farewell to his role as co-host of Seven's Sunrise after 21 years, a similar goodbye came from Western Australia's premier, Mark McGowan, who announced his departure from politics – for reasons that are all too relatable.

McGowan's rationale for quitting is pretty damn simple: he's just absolutely, totally stuffed. "I'm tired, extremely tired. In fact, I'm exhausted," McGowan said, admitting his "relentless" job had become too much for him after leading WA through the pandemic.

Mark McGowan
Western Australian Premier Mark McGowan said he no longer has the "energy or drive" to continue in the role, something we all feel. Source: AP

We're all exhausted

The idea of being "on" 24/7 seems to be taking its toll on everyone, not just public figures. Don't know about you, but nearly everyone I speak to has a slight feeling of exhaustive resignation. And I don't mean quitting their job right away, more like: "I am sooo tired and of course I'll keep going, but I just don't know how much longer I can do it."

Working from home and the advent of more "timeless" roles means the 38-hour work week is a thing of the past, as most of us are online from early morning, throughout the day, and of course before we go to bed. Oh, and that's not counting those times you wake up at that dreaded hour of 3am and think, "I must check my emails and my news feeds."

Going, going... gone?

Unless you're in the very privileged position of not needing to work to survive, everyone is feeling totally stuffed. Aside from the cost of living going into crazy territory, in order to keep up with everyday life and the bills and expectations that go with it, you feel as though you need to be constantly going, going, going.

But in all that going, we don't want to ultimately be gone. We all know our health is actually our real wealth but prioritising it is often much easier said than done, as work and the daily/weekly/monthly pay packet is essential if you want to live a reasonable life.

David Koch
Referencing AFL, David Koch said he's "finding it harder to get off the ground to take those speccy marks" when he announced his departure from Sunrise. Source: Channel 7

To both Kochie and Mark McGowan, I say absolutely good on you both. You've decided to leave before you really "had" to – something not every employee has the joy of doing. You went out on top and you've obviously made a healthy amount of money. So go and use those dollars – take that holiday; do that motorhome trip around Australia; laze on an exotic island; and take the time to mulch around in your gardens.

To be fair, Kochie and McGowan aren't departing work life altogether – Kochie still runs a family business, hosts a finance show and is of course hugely involved with his favourite footy club, Port Adelaide; while McGowan said he plans to find another job. But quitting their main gigs will free up so much of their time, for a good while at least.

Working our lives away

I'm sure many of us would love to do exactly what Kochie and McGowan did, however time is of the essence, as is your super balance, your family and your home situation. But to use that much heralded adage (something Succession's dead patriarch Logan Roy would not have lived by) are we really planning to say we worked our life away when we're on our deathbed? No, I definitely didn't think so.

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