Rich or poor, our values are not so different

ImageI don’t know what’s up with me lately. I’ve been on this quest, so to speak, to prove that rich and poor people are not so different – as people that is. I myself am not wealthy, don’t drive a sports car, and have not been paid by some secret society of the über wealthy to promote a more wholesome image of them. I think part of it is related to my desire to win the lottery, and convincing myself that having wealth will not make me greedy or selfish. The other part of it is an altruistic, cosmic quest to prove that we are all the same, rich or poor, and should love rather than envy each other, help one another, blah, blah, blah, etc. etc. etc.

So here’s what I did:

I took the data from our Values Profile and created two groups: People over 30 with a socioeconomic status of $75,000 and over, and people over 30 with a socioeconomic status of $25,000 or lower. I took the 31 values we assess on the test, and focused on the top ten for each group (#1 being the highest ranked/most important value).

Top ten values for $75,000 and over

1)     Empathy

2)     Altruism

3)     Hard work

4)     Family & Friends

5)     Stability

6)     Community

7)     Acceptance and Belonging

8)     Intellectualism

9)     Ethics/Morals

10)  Innovation

Top ten values for $25,000 and lower

1)     Empathy

2)     Altruism

3)     Family & Friends

4)     Hard work

5)     Community

6)     Acceptance and Belonging

7)     Stability

8)     Ethics/Morals

9)     Innovation

10)  Intellectualism

What do you notice? Here’s what I noticed:

  • Aside from the fact that they are not in the exact same order, they are the exact same values.
  • Money is not in the top ten for either group.
  • Power is not in the top ten for either group.
  • Recognition is not in the top ten for either group.

What does this mean? It means that there’s a strong desire to return to social values – to reconnect with other human beings. In fact, 5 of the top ten values are social values. It means rich people are not greedy, power-hungry, evil snobs (well, not all of them), and both groups recognize that “wealth” comes in many forms.

And in case you’re curious, here are the rest of the values and their rank (31 being the least important):

Values 11 to 31 for $75,000 and over

11)  Knowledge

12)  Socializing

13)  Financial Security

14)  Career

15)  Pragmatism

16)  Conventionality

17)  Entitlement

18)  Scientific Exploration

19)  Intellectual Creativity

20)  Appreciation of Beauty

21)  Free-thinking

22)  Compliance

23)  Pride

24)  Artistic Creativity

25)  Appreciation of Different Art Forms

26)  Competitiveness

27)  Power

28)  Recognition

29)  Self-Interest

30)  Religion

31)  Handiness

Values 11 to 31 for $25,000 and less

11)  Socializing

12)  Knowledge

13)  Appreciation of Beauty

14)  Free-thinking

15)  Intellectual Creativity

16)  Conventionality

17)  Pragmatism

18)  Financial Security

19)  Compliance

20)  Appreciation of Different Art Forms

21)  Artistic Creativity

22)  Career

23)  Entitlement

24)  Scientific Exploration

25)  Pride

26)  Handiness

27)  Self-Interest

28)  Power

29)  Competitiveness

30)  Recognition

31)  Religion

When I looked over the data one last time, I found myself humming the song Believe from Lenny Kravitz. I checked out the lyrics and understood why this song came to the forefront of conscious mind:

I am you and you are me

Why is that such a mystery?

If you want it you got to believe

Who are we? We’re who we are

Riding on the great big star

We’ve got to stand up if we’re gonna be free

If you want it, you got it

You just got to believe

Believe in yourself

‘Cause it’s all just a game

We just want to be loved…

 Insightfully yours,

Queen D

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