Our mood at work worsens over the day

People across the world tend to begin the day in a cheery state before their mood gradually worsens due to working life, it has been suggested. Researchers from Cornell University used microblogging site Twitter to monitor the attitudes of millions of individuals from 84 countries and discovered work, sleep and the amount of daylight all contribute in moulding a person's cyclical emotions.

These can include delight, alertness, enthusiasm, fear and anger - and the authors of the study, which has been published in the journal Science, claimed the results have only been made possible to obtain thanks to the increasing popularity of social networking sites.

The investigators used Twitter in conjunction with language monitoring software and discovered early morning and close to midnight were the two times of day when people posted the most positive tweets.

Funding for the study was provided by the National Science Foundation, which was created in 1950.

Professor Gail Kinman from the University of Bedfordshire, a Chartered Psychologist, commented: "The researchers concluded that most people are happier when they are not at work. This study tracked the mood of 2.4 million people across the world for more than two years. 

"Social networking sites have great potential for obtaining data from large numbers of people across time. It is difficult to challenge the findings of such a large study, there is likely to be considerable variation between people in relation to job type, work scheduling and individual difference variables.

"Moreover, other research findings indicate that many people experience high levels of job satisfaction, suggesting that work can enhance positive mood as well as make people miserable."