“There’s an enormous culture around us of capitalism that’s telling us to buy things and a hustle-achievement culture that destroys my students in terms of anxiety”
Is there any wonder why so many young people don’t understand why capitalism is the best economic system?
FOX News reports:
Yale University ‘happiness professor’ warns capitalism is destroying students with anxiety
A Yale University “happiness” professor told The New York Times Magazine that the culture of capitalism in the United States is crippling her students with anxiety.
“There’s an enormous culture around us of capitalism that’s telling us to buy things and a hustle-achievement culture that destroys my students in terms of anxiety,” Laurie Santos, a cognitive scientist, told magazine writer David Marchese.
Santos, who teaches “Psychology and the Good Life,” one of the most popular classes at Yale, said that people’s intuitions about what will make them happy and avoid anxiety are often misguided, pursuing short-term satisfaction in buying the new iPhone or chasing more money.
“After a busy day, I want to sit and watch crappy Netflix TV shows, even though I know the data suggests that if I worked out or called a friend, I’d be happier. But to do that I have to fight my intuition,” Santos said.
She also suggests that modern people are fighting cultural forces that convince them they are not happy enough, or that happy could be just right around the corner, often flooding them with a river of information that they must determine the informativeness and benefit of.
Santos also notes that religion and spirituality can oftentimes cause people to be happier, not necessarily in belief, but in the actions and community formed from such beliefs.
“It seems to not be our beliefs but our actions that are driving the fact that religious people are happier. That’s critical because what it tells us is, if you can get yourself to do it — to meditate, to volunteer, to engage with social connection — you will be happier. It’s just much easier if you have a cultural apparatus around you,” she said.
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