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Happiness with Regret

A New York Times article entitled “Can Money Buy Happiness?” notes the wealthy often struggle to balance the benefit and the burden of affluence. That conclusion comes from a new study on affluent Americans aged 25 to 65.

Interestingly, the data cited says that money can buy a certain kind of happiness. But that certain kind of happiness often comes with regrets. This survey indicated that many of these affluent Americans had deep regrets about the toll on their families as they accumulated their wealth.

Reporter Paul Sullivan summarized the study this way:

Affluent Americans ages 25 to 65 were asked a series of questions about their attitudes toward wealth. About half of all respondents said the sacrifices they had made to accumulate such wealth meant that they had spent less time with friends and family. That regret rose to nearly two thirds for people at the higher end of the wealth range in the study. More than half of business owners felt it too, outpacing people who had accumulated their wealth by working for someone else.

David Murphy, head of a wealth management firm said, “It’s the guilt over the time it took away from the family. There’s a lot of emotion built into growing the business and the time it takes to do that.”

Possible Preaching Angles: This study shows that both the quest for money and success can become hollow apart from a deeper purpose and mission in Christ.

Paul Sullivan, “Balancing the Benefit and the Burden of Wealth,” The New York Times (6-8-18)

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