Does wealth lead to happiness?

Lee Hausner, PhD Clinical Psychologist & Author, shares advice for parents on whether kids can tell their family's wealth and whether it leads to them being happier or less happy
Does Wealth Lead To Happiness
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Does wealth lead to happiness?

Children become very aware of differences in economic standards of families, even if families don't want them to. When I was a psychologist in Beverly Hills, Beverly Hills parents wanted to pretend like there wasn't wealth, "Don't tell my children, but I'm rich." Well, the children would know that. They would know that because of the kind of homes they were living in, the kind of opportunities that they had. I think what you say children is that there's a wide variety of the amount of money that people have to develop a lifestyle. There are people that have very little, that live off the land, that farm, that have to support themselves, then there are individuals who have achieved significant financial success and will have larger homes, or will have vacation homes, or are able to afford more material things. I think the most important thing though, is that you really have to emphasize that the material things are not what is important in life and the material things are not what really makes someone feel happy or satisfied. It has nothing to do with the externals, that people can be just as happy if they're living in a small house and all they do is family picnics as someone who is flying on a jet to Aspen. And I think that the most important message that you give is that there are these differences and you have to accept the fact that there are these differences, but it doesn't have anything to do with your personal happiness in life.

Lee Hausner, PhD Clinical Psychologist & Author, shares advice for parents on whether kids can tell their family's wealth and whether it leads to them being happier or less happy


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Lee Hausner, PhD

Clinical Psychologist & Author

Dr. Lee Hausner is an internationally recognized clinical psychologist, business consultant and family wealth advisor. She served as the senior psychologist for the Beverly Hills Unified School District for 19 years. She is currently the Senior Managing Director for First Foundation Advisors. An acknowledged expert on psychological issues involving wealth and wealth transfer, she was a presenter at the World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, and is a frequent participant at the high wealth/private client conferences for major financial institutions. She is a frequent guest on national radio and television and a quoted expert in national publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Times, Forbes, Fortune, Privilege, Town and Country and Worth Magazine.

Dr. Hausner is the co-author with Doug Freeman of A Founder's Guide to the Family Foundation, published by the Council on Foundations and is the author of the seminal work regarding wealth and the family; Children of Paradise: Successful Parenting for Prosperous Families. In addition, Dr. Hausner incorporated her unique six-step transition model for succession in family business in the critically acclaimed family business resource book Hats Off to You 2: Balancing Roles and Creating Success in Family Business, of which she was a co-author.

Dr. Hausner is a graduate of Northwestern University (BA, Psychology), San Francisco State University (MA, Psychology), and Kensington University (PhD, Psychology).

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