Can’t resist checking that late-night office email or tweet? You have plenty of company.
Chicago University researchers have found most people have a harder time resisting their desire for work-related and media updates than cravings for cigarettes and alcohol.
The research, reported by the University’s Booth Business School in the journal Psychological Science, analyzed the willpower of 205 German people -- 18 to 85 years old.
Participants wore devices for one week that recorded 7,827 reports about their daily desires. Researchers found their reports indicated the desire for media and work were the hardest to resist. Desires for sleep and sex were the strongest, while cravings for tobacco and alcohol were the weakest, according to the study.
"Modern life is a welter of assorted desires marked by frequent conflict and resistance, the latter with uneven success," said lead author Wilhelm Hofmann, in a release posted on the Chicago University Website. He added that sleep- and leisure-related desires were the most problematic, suggesting "pervasive tension between natural inclinations to rest and relax and the multitude of work and other obligations".
The researchers also found that as the day wore on, willpower became lower.