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The study issued on the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, also discovered that the 'weekend effect' was largely related to do whatever one wanted to do and the prospect of spending time with loved ones.
Author Richard Ryan, a Professor of Psychology at the University of Rochester, said “Workers, even those with interesting, high status jobs, really are happier on the weekend. Our findings highlight just how important free time is to an individual's well-being."
The relatively unfettered time on weekends provides opportunities for bonding with others, exploring interests and relaxing — basic psychological needs.
Researchers assessed the moods of 74 adults, aged 18 to 62, who were engaged with work for nearly 30 hours per week. The participants were handed over a questionnaire in the morning, afternoon and evening for three weeks.
Volunteers filled the questionnaire describing the activity they were engaged in. They were given a seven point scale to rate their happiness, joy and pleasure and even anxiety, anger, and depression. Physical symptoms of stress like headaches, digestive problems, respiratory ills, or low energy were also noted.
They results proved that all men and women felt happier at weekends irrespective of their hours of work and earnings.
This study is one of the first substantive and theory based explanation of well being weekend trends. On weekends because a person is entitled to relaxation he experiences greater autonomy and alertness which is directly related to higher wellness.