Is leisure a waste of time?
A study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology suggests people who think that feeling like leisure is wasteful and unproductive may lead to less happiness and higher levels of stress and depression. In different series of studies, researchers examined a common belief that existed in out current modern society that productivity is the only end and ultimate goal and time is wasted when we just having fun and enjoy leisure activities. The new study suggests that feeling like leisure is wasteful may lead to poorer mental health outcomes. Selin Malkoc, co-author of the study and associate professor of marketing at Ohio State University's Fisher College of Business said people who believe this strongly did not enjoy leisure time and also reported poorer mental health. She added that many pieces of research suggest that leisure has psychological state benefits and makes us more productive and less stressed. But the issue is people consider leisure to be wasteful and end up being stressed and depressed.
In a study, 199 college students rated on what proportion they enjoyed a spread of leisure activities and completed assessments that measured their levels of happiness, depression, anxiety, and stress. They were also asked what proportion they agreed with some statements which assess the degree to which they believed leisure is wasteful (such as "Time spent on leisure activities is often wasted time.") Results showed that the more the participants believed leisure is wasteful, the less they enjoyed leisure activities. In addition to it, the more they thought leisure is wasteful, the lower their levels of happiness and therefore the higher their levels of depression, anxiety, and stress.
In one among the study, more than 300 online participants were asked what they did to celebrate Halloween a few days. Activities they choose can be for fun and their own likings, like going to a party. Others served a bigger goal, like taking your kids out for a treat which is more often a responsibility. The participants were asked to rate what proportion they enjoyed their Halloween experience? Results showed up that people who thought leisure was more wasteful of your time reported less enjoyment of leisure activities, like parties, that were only about the fun. "But people who participated in fun activities that fulfilled responsibilities, like treating together with your kids, didn't see such a reduction in what proportion they enjoyed their Halloween," said study co-author Gabriela Tonietto, a professor of selling at the Rutgers graduate school. One study that compares people within the us , India, and France found that the people in France are less likely to believe that leisure is wasteful as compared to the United States and India as this is consistent with cultural stereotypes(1).
Reczek said."We sleep during a worldwide society and there are people everywhere that hear the same message about how important it's to be busy and productive," "And once you think that, and internalize the message that leisure may be a waste, our results suggest you are going to be more depressed and fewer happy, regardless of where you reside ."(1) Tonietto said for people who believe leisure is wasteful, "it could even be helpful to believe the productive ways during which individual leisure activities can serve their long-term goals," In other words, connect each leisure activity to something you want to accomplish in a long run. If leisure is often framed as having some quite productive goal, that helps people that think leisure is wasteful to urge several equivalent benefits."said Rebecca Reczek, study co-author, professor of marketing at Ohio State (1). We need to stop this myth about leisure activities are waste of time. They are as important as our work life to be more efficient and focused. In the Covid19 Pandemic where all age groups are experiencing stress, anxiety and depression spending time with loved ones and indulging ourselves in the leisure activities like Gardening, any Sport, Cooking or whatever your stress reliever is also even something in excess is always harmful a balanced approach should be adopted between the leisure activities and work life.