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How Much Leisure Time Do the Happiest People Have?

https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2019/02/free-time-life-satisfaction/583171/

theatlantic.com

How Much Leisure Time Do the Happiest People Have?
The correlation that Holmes and her collaborators hit upon persisted even after they controlled for people's age, gender, race, parental status, and other demographic variables (though they did not calculate how the optimal amount of free time varied depending on these factors).

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Happiness Paradox

Happiness Paradox
Most people are pressed for time, not having much of it to spend on doing things they love or want to do. Happiness should, therefore, be equated with more free time, but that isn't the case.
Busy people tend to be happier than the ones with no work.

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Free Time and Life Satisfaction

Free Time and Life Satisfaction
  • There is a correlation between the number of hours of free time one gets and their life satisfaction.
  • People's free time might be less fulfilling if they can't spend it with others.
  • People with a lot of free time tend to feel low in self-esteem.

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Discretionary time

Discretionary time

It is your time, doing what you want to do. People like to use their discretionary time with activities like watching TV, socializing, going to the mall or movies, spending time with their loved ones, or just doing nothing.

Discretionary time is the variable that decides how happy one is in their life.

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The actor-observer bias

The actor-observer bias

When a person experiences something negative, they will blame the circumstances. When something negative happens to another person, they will blame the individual ...

Why the actor-observer bias happens

A possible reason is that when people are the actors in the situation, they are blind to their own actions.

When they are observers, they can easily spot the behaviors of other people.

The actor-observer bias can be problematic

The actor-observer bias can often lead to misunderstandings and arguments.

In an argument, both sides my respond that the other person started it. Each side thinks their own behavior is because of the situation, but the other's behavior is because of their character. They may think the other person is unkind while they are fighting because they were attacked.

Adaptation and happiness

Adaptation is the enemy of happiness.

We buy things to make us happy. And they do, but only for a while. New things are exciting to us at first, but then we adapt to them.

Experiences vs. Objects

Objects fade and become part of the new normal. So you’ll get more happiness spending money on experiences like going to art exhibits, doing outdoor activities, learning a new skill, or traveling. 

Experiences really are part of ourselves. We are the sum total of our experiences.

Shared experiences

They connect us more than shared consumption.

Even if someone wasn’t with you when you had a particular experience, you’re much more likely to bond over both having hiked the Appalachian Trail or seeing the same show than you are over both owning Fitbits.

Get The Most Out Of Your Time

It starts with knowing what your time is worth. For instance:

  • People who spend their time doing more profitable work make more money. 
  • People who...

Monetary Value of Time

We all have some idea of how much our time is worth. On extreme ends, it is easy to know if a task is worth your time. For instance, if someone offers you $0.07 per hour and another $7,000 per hour, you would have no problem to decide.
However, in the middle of the time-value spectrum, it is less clear if a particular task is worth your time. While everyone has an hourly value, few people know the exact amount.

The Real Worth Of Your Time

Use the Realized Income Methods to calculate the value of your time. It is based on the income you received and will help you make better decisions on how to spend money day-by-day. You need two numbers for your calculations.

  1. How much time you spend to earn money.
  2. How much you earn during that time.

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