Career-focused individuals more likely to end up lonely, study finds

You know what they say, BUZZ Fam, all work and no time for family and friends make Jack a lonely boy.

And that’s what a study at the University of Buffalo in the US has proven. According to the study published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin journal, those who focus their lives on accumulating wealth are more likely to end up lonely. This is because they sacrifice social time with loved ones in order to work.

Now, don’t get us wrong, the pursuit of wealth is not a bad thing. The problem is when people base their self-value on riches, and sacrifice meaningful social relationships as a result.

So, this is why balance is important. Unless, of course, you wanna end up lonely.

“When people base their self-worth on financial success, they experience feelings of pressure and a lack of autonomy,” paper author and psychologist Lora Park said.

She explained that those feeling are “associated with negative social outcomes.”

“Feeling that pressure to achieve financial goals means we’re putting ourselves to work at the cost of spending time with loved ones,” fellow paper author and psychologist Deborah Ward added.

“It’s that lack of time spent with people close to us that’s associated with feeling lonely and disconnected.”

The study

The researchers recruited more than 2,500 people for their study to explore the relationship between the financial contingency of self-worth and a number of other factors.

These included the amount of time that participants spent socialising with others, as well as any feelings of loneliness or social disconnection.

Participants were asked to keep a daily diary for two weeks. This was used to write down how much time they spend engaged in social activities, as well as how they felt about the importance of money.

“We saw consistent associations between valuing money in terms of who you are and experiencing negative social outcomes in previous work, so this led us to ask the question of why these associations are present,” said Professor Ward.