This just in: Those with little to do, do less.
Rising unemployment rates may equate more time on our hands, but guess what people are doing with that time? According to a new study, they are sleeping and watching TV.
The American Time Use Survey released by the Labor Department this week revealed that time spent in front of the television rose by 12 minutes from 2007 to 2009. While that may not sound like a lot, it means Americans now spend an average of two hours and 49 minutes a day in front of the boob tube.That’s over 1,000 hours a year “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” or being trapped in endless loops of “House Hunters” and “Color Splash”.
Sleep also increased. Americans gained six minutes of shut-eye during that time, now averaging eight hours and 40 minutes a day. This is probably a good thing considering another study now claims that women sleep less than men, and those who average five or less hours a night are twice as likely to have high blood pressure and an increased risk of coronary disease.
You would think that unemployed Americans would spend more time on healthy, productive activities, like say, exercising. But they aren’t. The amount of time spent working out stayed roughly the same during the study period, proving that the “I’m too busy to get in shape” excuse is really just that — an excuse. If Americans aren’t exercising more when they’re unemployed (and a lack of income doesn’t have to mean a lack of physical activity when things like walking, hiking or running are virtually free), doesn’t that show there’s more of a lack of motivation than a lack of time? Something that we’ve suspected all along.
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