Thursday, February 02, 2012

Money and Self Esteem

A new study out of Taiwan has some interesting findings.  What they did was get people to feel shame in the present by remembering and thinking about an event from their past where they felt shame.  Then they had them (and a control group not feeling shame) make various decisions regarding money.  What they found was the people feeling shame valued money more and were less generous with it.  Essentially, they used money to restore the self-esteem that was lost through the feeling of shame.  It is too bad that money has become an easy crutch to restore self-esteem.  It suggests that people who have low self-esteem in general will be less generous, more selfish, and maybe even more likely to steal (yeah, I am making a little bit of a jump here, but it based on related studies I have read).