Good news for moms everywhere who are constantly feeling that dreaded "mom guilt" every time they order in dinner for the family instead of preparing a home cooked meal. Mothers often feel pressure to be "super mom." The pressure to work either inside the home or outside, or even stay home to take care of the kids is a lot, but add in to it keeping the home clean and preparing home cooked meals for the family every day and it's often too much to handle.
Thankfully, a new study has shown that mothers who "buy time" — meaning they order take out, hire someone to clean their home, and even do their groceries for them — makes them happier.
A new study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America found that working adults were happier when they spent their money on things that saved them time, instead of material things.
The study focused on a large, diverse group of working adults from across the United States, Canada, Denmark, and The Netherlands. The study was conducted because it found that the more money people made, the less free time they had. Presumably because they were working more. Less free time has shown to increase stress because they lacked the time to do all the things they felt they needed to do, and people will less free time were found to have poorer eating habits.
Those involved in the study were asked whether they spent money each month on things that would save them time, like ordering take out or have a cleaning person come and clean their homes. They were also asked how much they spent on these time saving services.
The study found that those who spend money each month on services such as this, who 'buy time' seem to have a greater life satisfaction. The study also calls out working women and mothers who benefit from spending money on time saving services, stating that it's women often feel 'obligated' to perform much of the time intensive chores around the home.
"Within many cultures, women may feel obligated to complete household tasks themselves, working a “second-shift” at home, even when they can afford to pay someone to help," the study stated. "In recent decades, women have made gains, such as improved access to education, but their life satisfaction has declined; increasing uptake of timesaving services may provide a pathway toward reducing the harmful effects of women’s second-shift."
Basically if you're a working mother, or even an overwhelmed mother who stays home with your kids, you shouldn't feel guilty about ordering take out or delivery for dinner, or having that cleaning person at your house every week, or even ordering your groceries online. All those things that buy you time to spend with your family or even just for your own mental health are making you happier in the long run.