Does watching TV make you unhappy? Science reveals…


After analyzing 30-years worth of national data from time-use studies and a continuing series of social attitude surveys, the Maryland researchers report:

  • Spending time watching television may contribute to viewers’ happiness in the moment, with less positive effects in the long run.
  • By contrast, unhappy people watched significantly more television in their spare time.
  • The short, temporary pleasure of television is similar to addiction: “Addictive activities produce momentary pleasure but long-term misery and regret,”

So should you stop watching TV forever? How about movies?

Look. I don’t know dude. Go read up on the original article.

Personally, I don’t endorse watching TV. Or smoking. Or juggling hand grenades. They just don’t seem like useful habits. Unless useful = avoid tuning into your own ongoing drama a.k.a your life, your personal growth, and real issues.

catThink about it. What if someone you knew spent the next month replacing the time they use to watch TV to tune into their own life instead?

How would their life change?

And our parents. We have to stop them! It’s scary how many hours our parents spend on the TV each day! Even more as they age. And they used to tell us to stay off the telly.

How times have changed.

I guess some people might actually learn stuff from TV. In the same way you might learn stuff from real life.

But what do I know. I haven’t watched TV intentionally since I was 16. And that doesn’t imply I did anything useful either ;P

In the end, the big issue isn’t just about TV. It’s up to how we choose to use/ waste our time.

Most people get ahead during the time that others waste. ~ Henry Ford

For example: We can find so many other things to use/ waste time. Who knows, maybe science will also show you that watching YouTube makes you unhappy! Or fat? Or cancerous? Or fat cancerous and unhappy?

I hope not. I spent 20 minutes watching this on replay:


And I spent an hour making this blog post. What a complete waste of time ;P

Photo credits: TV pic by joguldi Cat pic by cloudzilla

Thanks Ditesh for letting us know about the science article

5 comments on “Does watching TV make you unhappy? Science reveals…

  1. ZARA 札拉 [사랑해~] November 15, 2008 10:37 pm

    sometimes I guessed I’m still learning from Tv…

    but, after been in campus, TV never attract me so much…

    unless I need to watch news..i do want TV..not just the online TV..

  2. Ashleigh November 16, 2008 11:57 am

    Yeah, I know what you mean.

    I don’t have a TV at home because hardly anyone in my household watches TV anyway.

    Kids who watch a lot of TV have very, very, very short attention spans. I teach like a bunch of these attention deficit kids in kindergarten and they are a handful. And scientific studies have proven likewise too.

  3. Celine December 4, 2008 3:15 pm

    You ARE indeed wasting your time. But you got me too. I wasted 10 minutes reading and replying your post *wink*

    Weird as it seem, i rarely watch TV anymore RIgHT after ASTRO is subscribed at my home. I know.. I’m insane.

  4. jinxed December 14, 2008 2:52 am

    I quited watching TV about 3 years ago, to the point that I don’t even know when there is a war somewhere.

    I know I should watch the news but honnestly not watching TV anymore really made my life way cooler!

  5. joanne December 12, 2009 8:36 am

    i watch the TV 🙂 news and movies and series too 🙂 hahaha

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