Mind

Being a ‘control freak’ is good for you and makes most people ‘happy’

Being obsessed with controlling aspects of your life, even small things, are good for you and can make you happy, a study has found.

Research of 2,000 adults found they feel uneasy if they’re not in charge of key aspects of their home – including the TV remote, home décor and thermostat.

Three in 10 admit being in control actually make makes them feel happier, 39 per cent find it relaxing and a third feel less inclined to worry.

And around half believe controlling these aspects of their home even saves them money.

Commissioned by smart home specialists Hive, the study found 78 per cent believe being a control freak is actually a positive trait – given today’s hectic lifestyles.

Behavioural psychologist Jo Hemmings, working with Hive, said: “Feeling in control of your home is a very healthy attribute that can leave you feeling happier and more motivated.

“In today’s unpredictable lifestyle, it is fitting that we are seeing a rise of ‘connected home controllers’ using technology to help them complete those everyday tasks and find balance in their home.”

The research also found two-fifths don’t feel in control of their home lives, leaving them feeling stressed (25 per cent) and worried (11 per cent).

To maintain control, those polled employ an array of tactics, from implementing cleaning rotas, to turning to technology in a bid to make those everyday tasks simpler.

Almost a fifth believe smart technology such as voice assistants and smart thermostats mean it is easier than ever to control the home.

The aspects of home life those polled want to control include the household finances (48 per cent) and management of the weekly food shop (44 per cent).

More than a third said they want instant control over the temperature of their home and 32 per cent ‘need’ to monitor the recycling.

Men believe they control the TV remote (63 per cent compared to 35 per cent of women).

They also think they are in charge of DIY (61 per cent compared to 26 per cent) and home security (58 per cent v 32 per cent).

However, women said they rule the roost when it comes to hosting, home décor choices and controlling the thermostat.

And the Hive study carried out through OnePoll found many are willing to revert to underhand tactics if someone else attempts to take control.

More than a quarter admitted they have emptied and reloaded the dishwasher when it wasn’t done as they would do it.

And almost half have changed the thermostat behind the backs of those they live with and a quarter have re-hung wet washing after their other half has done it “incorrectly”.

Peter Simon, managing director at Hive, said: “The research clearly shows people want a stress-free home and are beginning to use technology to help achieve this.

“Our smart devices are designed to gain better control of the home and in turn help to make your home greener and save you money.

“Whilst we’ve got people’s smart home tech covered, we didn’t want to stop there and have teamed up with the self-confessed purveyor of order, Chris Robshaw to help you get your home back under control.”

Rugby ace Robshaw added: “In sport, we have this saying – ‘control the controllables’ and I apply this to my everyday life.

“When I feel everything is in order off the pitch, I often feel more control when I am on the pitch.

“I am a big believer in tech making everyday living easier, so I’ve teamed up with Hive to help you organise your home life.

“So when it comes to those big game moments in life, you feel fully prepared to tackle them.”

Being a ‘control freak’ is good for you and makes most people ‘happy’
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