A recent Chicago University study is proving that people are more likely to resist their desire to consume alcohol, coffee and tobacco, than to resist their desire to check social media.
Not only that, but according to the study, people are more likely to give in to social media urges than to sexual and sleeping urges, as well as spending and sports. Basically, the only one that was harder to resist was the urge to work.
The results to this study have a good explanation, though. Social networks/media are not expensive, are very accessible and available, and do not harm your health (most of the time). As Wilhelm Hofmann (study leader) mentions, there is no direct downside to social media use. Smokers and drinkers has reasons to want to stop – both health-wise and financial. But most of the time, there is no direct downside to checking Twitter, Facebook or your e-mail. And it only takes a minute.
I have to say, though, the fact that some of the other urges can be more controlled than social networks is surprising. Urges like sleeping and sex are part of our biology. Not only a habit, but inscribed into our very core and DNA. The study states that while these urges were much stronger, people were much more able to control them.
If you want to learn more about the study, you should wait for the full research paper to be published soon. It will be featured in Psychological Science.
Are you ready for Social Networkers Anonymous?