Does idle chat and unhappiness go together? Eight years ago, a study was published (Mehl et al. 2010) suggesting that they do. The authors reported that “Well-Being Is Related to Having Less Small Talk and More Substantive Conversations”, triggering many alarming headlines.
Now, however, the same researchers have carried out a much larger study and have failed to confirm the chat-unhappiness association. The new paper is published in Psychological Science, the same journal where the ori