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Study: Mean People Save More Money

Study: Mean People Save More Money

Are you tired of being a pushover when it comes to your finances? Well, it turns out being a little meaner may actually be the key to saving more money.

According to a recent study by Columbia University and the University of Colorado Boulder, nice people finish last when it comes to managing their finances. The researchers believe this is because they prioritize socializing with friends over material wealth.

The study asked participants about their “Big Five” personality traits — agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, openness and extraversion — as well as their saving ambitions. They discovered highly conscientious people were more motivated to plan for the future and save money. On the other hand, people high in agreeableness were less likely to save than others, possibly because they’ve been taught that valuing people and valuing money are at odds with one another, and “nice people” don’t value money.

Dr. Sandra Matz of Columbia University believes that reframing one’s motivation for saving money and aligning their personality traits with their financial goals could improve their spending habits.

“We tried to think of ways we could motivate agreeable people to save more,” Matz said. “Could we simply highlight how saving money would help them protect their loved ones? This suddenly makes money a means to an end that they care about.”

Of course, you can be a nice person and still stick to a budget. If you need some help handling your finances, here’s five questions you can ask yourself to help better manage your money:

1. What goals am I working towards that require me to save money?

2. What am I getting out of the money I’m spending?

3. What can I cut out?

4. Do I need to change my budget or my spending?

5. Is there a way I can supplement my income?

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