A new study conducted by The Associated Press and MTV shows that family, friends, and religion make teens more happy and that (surprise, surprise) money and sex make them less happy. Family ties were the overwhelming winner and “mom” and “dad” were the most frequent responses when teens were asked to name their heroes.
It makes you wonder whether MTV will make the connection that they constantly bash the values and heroes of their target demographic while simultaneously promoting the very things that are shown to make teens unhappy. It makes you wonder whether us teens will make that connection as well.
Poll: Family Ties Key to Youth Happiness
WashingtonPost.com – Jocelyn Noveck and Trevor Tompson – 08/20/07
So you’re between the ages of 13 and 24. What makes you happy? A worried, weary parent might imagine the answer to sound something like this: Sex, drugs, a little rock ‘n’ roll. Maybe some cash, or at least the car keys.
Turns out the real answer is quite different. Spending time with family was the top answer to that open-ended question, according to an extensive survey — more than 100 questions asked of 1,280 people ages 13-24 — conducted by The Associated Press and MTV on the nature of happiness among America’s young people.
Next was spending time with friends, followed by time with a significant other. And even better for parents: Nearly three-quarters of young people say their relationship with their parents makes them happy.
“They’re my foundation,” says Kristiana St. John, 17, a high-school student from Queens in New York. “My mom tells me that even if I do something stupid, she’s still going to love me no matter what. Just knowing that makes me feel very happy and blessed.”
Once you’ve read the rest of the article come back here and join the discussion. For further reading on the topic of happiness you can check out one of our early articles called, A New Attitude Towards Happiness. Thanks for reading! Do Hard Things.
On a side note, thank you everyone who has been signing up for our Prayer Updates. We have the deadline for our book coming up at the end of this month. We are worn down from frequent traveling but need to make quick progress to finish on time. Please remember us in your prayers. It makes all the difference.
- What aspect of the survey was most surprising to you?
- What makes you happy? Try to come up with your Top Five things.
- Who are your heroes? Try to come up with your Top Five heroes.
- Why do you think there is a disconnect between what makes teens happy and what corporations like MTV sell them? Why do you think teens (including yourself) pursue things that we know will make us unhappy?