In a clever study1, psychologists Matthew Killingsworth and Daniel Gilbert investigated how mind wandering affects people.
They developed an iPhone app that contacted people at random times to ask them what they were going, thinking, and feeling.
And when they analyzed the responses from over 5,000 people worldwide, they found something interesting.
No matter what the participants had been doing — whether it was having sex or doing the dishes — they were happier if they were entirely focused on the activity.
What they were doing was way less important than how present they were while doing it.
So, if you want to make your mind happy:
- Train your focus — Practices like mindfulness meditation can be very useful for this.
- Remove your distractions — A quick like turning off your phone notifications can make a huge difference.
Help your mind to be here and now.
Because the less it wanders, the happier it will be.
- A Wandering Mind Is an Unhappy Mind by Matthew Killingsworth & Daniel Gilbert