To Feel Good, Give Your Money Away

May 23, 2008 05:27 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Scientists have found that giving money away brings more happiness than shopping therapy. Other studies suggest there is a biological component to selflessness.

30-Second Summary

The saying “it is better to give than to receive” may have a solid basis in scientific fact.

A new study suggests that people feel their spirits life when giving money away, a boost they don’t experience when spending on themselves.

The study followed students at the University of British Columbia who were given $5 or $20 and told how to spend the money.

Those who spent it on others, donating to charity or buying a gift, were happier at the end of the day than students who spent the money on themselves.

Furthermore, it may only take thinking about altruistic activities to make people happy.

Scientists at the National Institutes of Health reported last year that when volunteers in an experiment simply thought about performing generous acts, they “activated a primitive part of the brain that usually lights up in response to food or sex,” according to The Washington Post.

Headline Link: ‘The Secret to Happiness? Giving’

Related Topics: Other studies linking altruism and happiness

‘Oprah’s Big Give’
Money may buy some happiness, but not that much

Reference: Philanthropy and nonprofits


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