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A recent study shows that thinking of time in terms of hourly wages makes it harder to relax when you’re off the clock. The study, published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, had 53 undergraduates estimate how much they expected to earn after graduation. Some were asked to calculated their approximate hourly wage, while others were not.
After doing the maths, the students were asked to take a 10-minute break to surf the Web. The researchers found that the students who computed their hourly wages reported feeling less happy than those who hadn’t crunched the numbers.
They also reported a sense of impatience—not a good look for anyone trying to get rich—which led the researchers to conclude that thinking about time in terms of money not only impacts our perspective, but hampers our ability to simply let the good times roll.
With American workers desperately seeking flexible schedules—and feeling overworked in general—the time is money mindset has become the norm, though studies show not every employer is listening.