A recent study conducted by the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign and the University of Pennsylvania find this astonishing fact to be true. I find it funny, though not so much as to deserve an Ig Nobel Prize, the one awarded by the magazine Annals of Improbable Research (AIR) for the most unusual research. For me, this study cannot compete with one that proved dog fleas jump higher than cat fleas, or another that confirmed rats do not always distinguish between Japanese and Dutch spoken backwards (this had to be tested on rats?).
Perhaps it is not as shocking as the study that claims a vanilla flavour can be extracted from cow droppings, or the one recommending a rectal massage as the best remedy to cure hiccups. In any case, the new study’s findings are a good excuse to be ill-tempered towards your co-workers and not get fired for it. Thanks for explaining everything, science!
The results of this study on labour productivity, published in the journal Social Psychology, contend that workers with bad attitudes are beneficial and vital to a company. The reasoning dispels any doubt: moody workers are the most efficient with their tasks, they plan far better and their attitude gives them greater focus. In contrast, friendlier workers tend to divide their attention.
Occupational Benefits of Moodiness
Finally, somebody who doesn’t conform to the same old idea of remaining positive 24 hours a day! Still need more convincing?
Some time ago, the University of New South Wales published a study the same vein. It concluded that while it is true having our positive mode activated does make us more creative, open to compromise and supportive, temporary bad moods in small doses have many other advantages.
In general, moods affect us because they prepare our body to deal with our environment. Positive moods transmit a sense of security, while negative moods give us feelings of distrust and of finding ourselves in an unfamiliar situation. This awakens all our alert mechanisms and instincts: we are more receptive to all that surrounds us.
It seems that being cranky will help us to cope with difficult situations, since this is precisely when the brain promotes the most information processing strategies.
Bad moods have a way of making us pay more attention to what we are doing and to the external factors that affect us. So, let’s stop looking at life through rose coloured glasses, and start appreciating its nuances. In addition, we think more in detail and improve our written communication skills. Our concentration rises through the roof!
And when it comes to negotiating, a small dose of a bad mood will make us more persuasive, as we tune in more to what’s going on around us and our capacity for empathy grows.
Who knows, maybe in a few years, testing our level of “productive” bad attitude will become part of athe hiring process.
I hope that after reading this article you will be equipped with some arguments to justify your cloudy days, and yes, that you will someday again try the vanilla ice cream.