Why the French are so unhappy?
A lot of studies have shown that despite the relatively high standard of living that French people enjoy, in terms of happiness, they rank very very low. Like Baghdad low. How can this be? When you enjoy social security, 35 hours weekly work hours, and paid holidays you should be happy, right?
Well, the truth is elsewhere. One of the reasons might be the fact that French education and work culture is dominated by a top-down hierarchical style. Meaning that you have no freedom to speak out your opinion and that you have to conform. And basically, your boss is right. More than anywhere else in civilized western countries. The fact that other french speaking countries like Switzerland and Canada (Quebec) aren’t as unhappy as France tends to support this idea.
If we extend this reasoning to management and the success of companies to retain talents, then the right company culture, with the right management will produce happier employees and less employee turnover. Talented workers will flock to these better companies.
As individuals, we should learn from this. Wealth does contribute to happiness. But our mindset and the mindset of the society you live in (the culture) are way more important to achieve happiness. You can be the wealthiest person in the room but if your entourage is hierarchical, not egalitarian, and has a tendency to shun you up, chances are the least well-off economically but with better support from the environment will have more happiness and lower level of hypertension and stroke.
The difference is the source of wealth. Inclusivity produces value. The homogeneous french culture is a problem, not something to be proud of. Children in France should be thought to respect different opinions and to express freely their opinions without fear. Voltaire said, ‘I disagree with you strongly but I ardently defend your right to say your opinion.’ If only the French listened more to what their great philosophers said and think less that they are better than everyone else about everything.
Funny thing is that one day a French guy told me that France is a beautiful country. The problem is the French.
#french #voltaire #complaining #mindset #culture #openness #education #inclusivity #future