I can haz more productivity?
Fellow office workers, I have good news for you. If you occasionally indulge in a bit of lolcats when you take a break, you may actually be helping your employer by being more productive when you get back to work.
And yes, feel free to quote me on that.
Researchers at Hiroshima University in Japan have found that viewing cute images of kittens and puppies improved concentration, speed and fine motor dexterity. In a series of experiments, participants were shown images of baby animals, adult animals, pleasant food or neutral objects to test the impact on task performance.
In each experiment, there was a marked increase in performance after looking at pictures of adorable baby animals. Some experiments showed as much as a 43.9 per cent increase in speed, accuracy and dexterity for the ‘cute animals’ group, compared to just 11.9 per cent for the ‘adult animals’ group.
Here’s the graph to prove it:
Still not convinced? There’s more.
In June 2015, nearly 7,000 internet users were surveyed to understand their motivations for watching cat videos online. The resulting study found that watching cat-related media improved viewers’ energy levels and positive emotions, while decreasing negative emotions.
And it keeps getting better.
Neuroscientists at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign investigated the difference in participant performance after a ‘positive’ or ‘negative’ distraction. They found that positive images did not hamper the brain’s ability to focus on the task at hand, while negative images impaired performance. And since we know that cat videos engender warm fuzzy feelings, watching one on a break is not likely to break your concentration.
So go ahead, check out some of these adorable pictures below to enhance your mood and work performance – and while you’re at it, send them around to your colleagues and boss too. You’re welcome!