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March 01, 2022

People who don’t feel appreciated value their stuff more highly

Are you unreasonably attached to your possessions?

AdPeople who feel loved and accepted by others attach lower monetary values to material goods compared with those who feel insecure and unloved, according to research from the University of New Hampshire.

In other words, the folks who don’t feel valued and appreciated tend to value their stuff that much more.

In their experiments, the researchers measured how much people valued specific items, such as a blanket and a pen. In some instances, those who didn’t feel secure placed a value on an item that was five times greater than those feeling more secure.  

Edward Lemay, the professor who led the research, theorizes that the study results could be used to help people with hoarding disorders, a major health hazard that is growing across North America.

“These findings seem particularly relevant to understanding why people may hang onto goods that are no longer useful. They also may be relevant to understanding why family members often fight over items from estates that they feel are rightfully theirs and to which they are already attached.”

“Inherited items may be especially valued because the associated death threatens a person’s sense of personal security,” Lemay says.

Have you or someone you know struuggled this way?

Gordon Powers, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...