Frequent “texters” have more than just a sore thumb to worry about! New study has shown that teens and young adults who are inclined to send a lot of text messages in a day are likely to ignore their complete personality development, that includes inward growth, and take to shallow materialistic desires. According to professor of psychology at University of Winnipeg, Canada, Paul Trapnell, frequent texting is a sign of lack of interest in reflective thought.
The study was able to show that those who texted a lot were more concerned about wealth and their image than those who did not. According to Trapnell, there could be hundreds of reasons for such linkages to exist even though the data under study is not very large. But one thing is in favour of the research finding is that it takes a look at data over a long period of 5 years.
Heavy Texting Study Details
More than 2200 psychology class students were asked to note their frequency of texting. They were asked to tell the highest no. of received or sent messages in a day, for a month. This was continued from 2007 to 2011 and this data was collected. Only the non-work related messages had to be counted. The finding of this data is that 30 percent of students peaked at 200 messages per day. Around 12 percent of them peaked at 300 or more.
These subjects were then given a personality test in order to test -
- Traits of extroversion and being open to experiences.
- The tendency of self-introspection or reflecting on the experiences of life. This included answering to questions such as “I am often philosophical about my life!”
- The answers to their life goals which included wealth, image, fame, power, morality, community, achievement, family, spirituality, health, and others.
The findings revealed that compared to people who texted 50 times a day, those who texted 100 times a day were 30 percent less likely to feel that leading a life of principle and ethics was important. Scientists are of the opinion that the relationship between heavy texting and shallowness towards life can be explained by the fact that frequent texters do not use their spare time for reflecting on moral, social, emotional and in general, long-term consequences of any situation.