If you're not satisfied with your job, sex could be the answer to your problems. And no, we don't mean "sleeping your way to the top." According to a new study, there could actually be scientific merit to the idea that sex breaks make us more productive, happy workers.
The study, published in the Journal of Management last week, surveyed 159 married employees for two weeks, monitoring their sexual activity as well as their job satisfaction. Researchers gave them three online surveys throughout the day, during the morning, afternoon, and evening. The questions asked participants how often they had sex between work shifts, as well as evaluating their moods and how immersed they were in their work that day.
The results? Those who had sex were in a better mood at work the next day, leading to higher levels of job engagement and job satisfaction. Those who prioritized their sex lives at home had an advantage in their careers, because they were more likely to immerse themselves in their work and enjoy their jobs.
"We make jokes about people having a 'spring in their step,' but it turns out this is actually a real thing and we should pay attention to it," study author Keith Leavitt, an associate professor at Oregon State University’s College of Business, said in a press release. "Maintaining a healthy relationship that includes a healthy sex life will help employees stay happy and engaged in their work, which benefits the employees and the organizations they work for."
The study also found that work-related stress negatively impacted participants' sex lives, highlighting the importance of leaving your work at the office. In other words, a healthy work-life balance — that includes sexual activity — is linked to better career performance.
"This is a reminder that sex has social, emotional and physiological benefits, and it's important to make it a priority," Leavitt said. "Just make time for it."
While that might be easier said than done, it's good to remember that the old "work hard, play hard" saying still applies.