You're Having Fun When Time Flies: The Hedonic Consequences of Subjective Time Progression
7 Pages Posted: 8 Aug 2008 Last revised: 23 Jan 2010
Date Written: 2010
Seven studies test the hypothesis that people use subjective time progression in hedonic evaluation. When people believe that time has passed unexpectedly quickly, they rate tasks as more engaging, noises as less irritating, and songs as more enjoyable. We propose that felt time distortion operates as a metacognitive cue that people implicitly attribute to their enjoyment of an experience (i.e., time flew, so it must have been fun). Consistent with this attribution account, the effects of felt time distortion on enjoyment ratings were moderated by the need for attribution, the strength of the "time flies" naive theory, and the presence of an attribution alternative. These findings suggest a previously unexplored process through which subjective time progression can influence the hedonic evaluation of experiences.
Keywords: time, hedonic experiences, metacognition
JEL Classification: M39
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation