How Did Daylight Savings Time Make Us Feel? Facebook Knows the Answer, Of Course
If you’re anything like me, you groaned when you realized that this past Sunday was the first week of Daylight Savings Time. Sure, the sun may be up for one hour later every day until the end of October; but ugh, losing an hour of sleep sucks. Apparently we’re in the minority with our groanage, however, because according to Facebook, Daylight Savings Time makes us tired, but also happy. Or something.
Facebook’s Data Science blog conducted a little study into how Daylight Savings Time affects the mood of Americans by taking a look at what types of words the social networking site’s users were putting in their status updates on the Monday following the event. They found that “tired” was one of the most listed feelings, with a 25 percent increase in its occurrence compared to the previous week. “Sleepy” also went up 28 percent and “exhausted” went up 20 percent. And the phrase “feeling tired?” It went up a whopping 86 percent overall on the Monday after DST. Here, have a handy chart illustrating the trends:
Weirdly, though, there were also some pretty significant increases in the use of words describing positive moods and decreases in those describing negative moods, too. Usage of “wonderful” went up 21 percent the Monday following DST and “great” went up 19 percent; meanwhile, “annoyed” went down 14 percent and “bored,” 12 percent. Huh. I mean, I know correlation is not causation, but…well, that’s just a wee bit interesting, no?
The effects seem to wear off by the Tuesday following DST, which is what leads Facebook to believe that the happiness and tiredness boosts are both related to the time change. I’m still skeptical, though, because I mean really — who actually enjoys losing an hour’s sleep? Not me, that’s for sure.
Looks like it’s time for another cup of coffee…