Apparently, it really does hurt to think. And researchers at the University of Virginia and Harvard have demonstrated just how much it can hurt, in a series of experiments that asked people to sit alone with their thoughts. A UVA news release reports that the researchers found that study participants did not enjoy spending even brief periods of time alone in a room with nothing to do but think, ponder or daydream. Most preferred listening to music or using a smartphone, and some even preferred to give themselves mild electric shocks. Yes. Electric shocks. How do they know? Because in one experiment in which 18 men were asked to sit alone with their thoughts for 15 minutes, the men were given the option of administering a mild electric shock to themselves. Twelve of them did. Shocking? Think about this: when 24 women were given the same option, only six chose to shock themselves.