While happy people reported watching an average of 19 hours of television per week, unhappy people reported 25 hours a week. The results held even after taking into account education, income, age and marital status.Well, happy people tend to have lots of friends and an active social life and, therefore, less time to sit around in front of the TV.
The researchers are not sure, though, whether unhappiness leads to more television-watching or more viewing leads to unhappiness.Oh come on. People with unfulfilling lives turn to TV for lack of better options. Whether they enjoy watching TV as an activity is irrelevant; the point is they have nothing else to do.
In fact, people say they like watching television: Past research has shown that when people watch television they enjoy it. In these studies, participants reported that on a scale from 0 (dislike) to 10 (greatly enjoy), TV-watching was nearly an 8.
But perhaps the high from watching television doesn't last.
Look, there are a number of activities people participate in that fail to enrich their lives. They might take drugs, overeat, shop, or even, yes, watch a lot of television. But it is nonsensical to turn causality on its head.
The researchers say follow-up studies are needed to tease out the relationship between television and happiness.No, really, they're not.