Summary of “Don’t worry about feeling sad: on the benefits of a blue period”

Negative moods correlated with low life satisfaction only in people who did not perceive adverse feelings as helpful or pleasant.
In a study published in 2017, Bastian and his colleagues conducted two experiments examining how this societal expectation to seek happiness affects people, especially when they face failure.
After completing the task, all the participants took a worry test that measured their responses to failing the anagram task, and filled out a questionnaire designed to evaluate whether societal expectations to be happy affected how they processed negative emotions.
‘The idea is that when people find themselves in a context where happiness is highly valued, it sets up a sense of pressure that they should feel that way,’ Bastian told me.
In the second experiment, 202 people filled out two questionnaires online.
The second – in which people were asked to rate sentences such as: ‘I think society accepts people who feel depressed or anxious’ – measured to what extent societal expectations to seek positive feelings and inhibit negative ones affected their emotional state.
As it turns out, people who thought that society expects them to always be cheerful and never sad experienced negative emotional states of stress, anxiety, depression and sadness more often.
‘The point is that when we try and avoid sadness, see it as a problem, and strive for endless happiness, we are in fact not very happy and cannot enjoy the benefits of true happiness.

The orginal article.