Purchase time associated with life satisfaction

Purchase time associated with life satisfaction

Researchers from the USA, Canada and the Netherlands found that buying time is associated with the subjective evaluation of life satisfaction.

The participants of the experiments, which were paid for housework (e.g., cleaning or food delivery) and thus received more time, feel happier than those who did not. A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

In recent decades, the residents of some countries began to make more money. This led to the fact that people with relatively high incomes began to complain of lack of time. The stress caused by time constraints, in turn, leads to worsening of mood, increasing of anxiety and insomnia (1, 2). Also the lack of time as one of the causes of obesity: people do not have time to exercise regularly and eat fast food. Perhaps the purchase of services, saving time (grocery delivery, cleaning or cooking), can reduce the stress caused by lack of time. But studies that have studied how the buying of time affects life satisfaction, has still not been conducted.

The authors of the new article mention the buffer hypothesis that social support serves as a human buffer and protects it from stress caused by difficulties in the family or at work. They suggested that the purchase of services, liberating free time, can have the same buffer effect and reduce the stress of lack of time.

To test the hypothesis, researchers conducted surveys of adult working people from several countries. They are invited to participate in the study, people in the US, Canada, Denmark and the Netherlands. In addition, the researchers involved a poll of US residents that perform a single task on the crowdsourcing platform Amazon Mechanical Turk, as well as more than 800 millionaires from the Netherlands. All the studies involved 6 271 people. Each participant the authors asked questions about how they spend the money for the purchase of services, saving time, and if so, how. The scientists also asked the participants to rate satisfaction with life on a scale.