TECH

Humans Choose Electric Shock Over Time With Their Own Thoughts

04/07/2014 15:57 BST | Updated 04/07/2014 15:59 BST

So it turns out we really hate spending time with our own thoughts, so much so in fact that we'd rather send electric shocks through out bodies than do it.

A new study has revealed that rather than spend 11-15 minutes in a room, people would rather electrocute themselves than spend time thinking alone.

Conducted by a team at the University of Virginia the study has found that ultimately human beings would rather be actively doing something than nothing, even if it's negative.

Rather than suggesting we're all just really self-deprecating the truth is far more scientific. Humans have evolved to use our intelligence to analyse the environment around us, detecting and evaluating dangers so to devote that resource in an introverted way is simply unnatural.

boredom

With this in mind you suddenly realise just how tough a job Plato had on his hands; constantly fighting the urge to stab himself in the knee over becoming one of our most prominent philosophers.

Talking in Science Magazine, one of the papers main authors Timothy Wilson offered some insight into how us as humans might be able to move away from the urge to electrocute ourselves.

“I suspect that a little practice with just thinking pleasant thoughts in one form or another could work too,” Wilson offered, before laughing. “As I say that, it sounds sort of audacious to say, well, the Buddhists have had two thousand years of mediation training, but I can train people to do it easier. We certainly haven’t succeeded in doing it yet. This is something I want to test.”