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A new study in the journal ‘Emotion’ provides reassurance that the most of us who are NOT rich don’t necessarily enjoy LESS happiness. However, our happiness comes in ways different from the rich. Jim

“After all, they wrote, people with money are more insulated from social and environmental threats. That gives them the luxury of being able to focus on their own “internal states and goals” instead of having to worry about other people.

“Those who inhabit the lower classes, on the other hand, often find themselves at the mercy of others. They may be more vulnerable to crime, for instance, or may be forced to send their children to underfunded schools. In their case, the researchers wrote, the best coping strategy is to muddle through together. That requires them to focus on other people instead of just themselves…

“The survey probed people’s happiness by asking about seven distinct positive emotions: amusement, awe, compassion, contentment, enthusiasm, love and pride. Each emotion was described in a concise sentence, and survey-takers used a 7-point scale to show how much they agreed or disagreed with the statement…

“On the other hand, people with less money were more likely than their richer counterparts to agree with statements that indicated compassion (‘Nurturing others gives me a warm feeling inside’), love (‘I develop strong emotions toward people I can rely on’) and awe (‘I often feel awe’).”