- It’s but natural to believe and accept that the rich are different from the rest of the population
- However, did you know that they are different not only because they have more money than they know what to do with?
- You might wonder what you’re doing wrong, especially when you’re hitting rock bottom and some others are living extravagant lives far beyond your wildest dreams
- These people are fundamentally different from the rest of the population, so says a recent study conducted by a team of German economists and psychologists
- Apparently, the disparity stretches way beyond anything imaginable, and in aspects of life most people don’t even pay attention to
People are always thinking, one way or another, that the rich are different from everyone else. Some say it’s because they have more money than everybody else, others think they are luckier, more skilled, or even better people. Some actually believe that the wealthy became so because they discovered the perfect formula that make life work. But among all the theories about how the rich differs from everybody, one fact remain: They are different. In fact, they usually look bigger than life itself for the rest of us. Today, however, a new study tells everyone what we already know: the rich are fundamentally different from everybody else.
Several authors have explicitly stated differences between the rich and everybody else. F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernst Hemingway, Steve Siebold, and even the Bible all talk about these differences one way or another. Social scientists, politicians, and financial managers also agree that there exist a disparity not only in the amount of wealth but in many other things between the rich and the rest of the population.
In this new study conducted by six German economists and psychologists, a psychological profile of 130 wealthy people were derived using the Big Five personality typing system to distinguish the rich from the rest of the population. The study focuses on identifying patterns based on the five core personality traits which include conscientiousness, neuroticism, agreeableness, extraversion, and openness to experience.
After a thorough comparison of the core personalities of the wealthy respondents and those of the rest of the population, the research team were able to isolate the following patterns:
- The rich are more emotionally stable so they exhibit less nervous tendencies. They react impulsively with less worries about everything in life.
- The rich are especially enterprising. They are also talkative, determined, energetic, and are generally more courageous than most.
- The rich are imaginative, creative, and curious so they are more open to new experiences.
- The rich are less trusting and less agreeable, which means they less likely to back down or even shy away from conflicts.
- The rich are more thorough, meticulous, efficient, ambitious, and generally more conscientious than everybody else.
In addition to these patterns from the core traits which happens to be the focus of the Big Five personality typing system, the study also revealed two other traits common to wealthy people.
- The rich are narcissistic.
- The rich have a strong locus of control.
Apparently, the rich also differs from the rest of the population because of their narcissistic tendencies. They have a strong sense of entitlement and self-belief in addition to having a strong internal locus of control. As such, they are more accepting of the concepts of determining the outcome of their lives themselves rather than luck or destiny. Statements such as “I determine how my life turns out” is apparently more acceptable for the rich compared to other people.
This is not a unique study. In fact, the results of this new study is significantly similar to the results from a dissertation entitled “The Wealth Elite”. The dissertation had a smaller sample size, mostly self-made and with net worth ranging from 30 million to over one billion euros.
This smaller study on the psychology of the superrich also utilized the Big Five personality typing system, but in more detail. The results were basically similar, but the detailed version also resulted in a conclusion that the rich are nonconformists who act on indicators based more on intuition or gut feeling rather than detailed analysis. This study also added that unlike most people who look at others to assign blame during setbacks, the superrich look into themselves to identify the cause and change it.
There are many reasons why some are rich and others aren’t, but the specific combination of the unique way that some people, usually the superrich, think, make decisions, and react, make them act differently from the rest. Consequently, whether the person is old or nouveau riche doesn’t matter, the different nature of the rich is something they have lived with all their lives, having been imbued in every fiber of their being since childhood. In the end, Fitzgerald’s statement was right all along: “The rich are different from you and me.”
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