Can Money Buy Happiness?
By Susan Dunn
In studying resilience and the sweet uses of adversity, and
listening to my coaching clients, I discover the same things over and over
again. After a given point in time, the person acknowledges that a lot of good
things have come from their adversities.
Mind you it isn't a guarantee that you'll reach this resolution,
but many people do end up being not only what they call "better people," but
also happier - by their self-report and by my observations.
I like to check around about things, and I found an interesting
study done by Ronnie Janoff-Bulman, PhD, a psychologist at the University of
Massachusetts, comparing the well-being of lottery winners versus people who had
become suddenly paralyzed.
The results of the study were that after the initial high was
over for the lottery winners, they were no happier than the accident victims.
For the paralyzed individuals there was the initial shock of
adjustment, but after that early distress eased, it turns out they were "much
better able to appreciate the small pleasures and victories of life" than those
who were overnight millionaires. They felt much more optimistic about their
future than the lottery winners!
Should you go looking for adversity in order to bring character
and happiness? Of course not. But if it happens, it helps to know that for many
people, the outcomes are favorable.
Dunn, MA Clinical Psychology, The EQ Coach. Emotional intelligence coaching for
all areas of your life - career, relationships, leadership, conflict resolution,
communication, resilience, stress management, optimism.
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