If you feel like you don’t have enough time today, you should stop what you’re doing and spend some time with others.
That seems counterintuitive, because what we actually tend to do when we feel busy is pack on the work—even clocking 2 extra hours a day by checking in on our smartphones after the workday ends.
So how can spending time with others make us feel less…compressed?
Patricipants involved in four studies conducted by the University of Harvard, Pennsylvania, and Yale reported feeling that their sense of having time increased when they did small things for others, like writing a kind note. When participants gave their time away, they actually felt that they had more time to spare, compared to participants who spent time with themselves or got more free time by leaving the experiment early.
So, maybe spending three or five minutes a day with others can make you feel less busy—and perhaps because you did something for somebody else.
To read the study, click here.