Episode 61

Published on:

9th Jun 2023

061: Carol Graham - The Power of Hope

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Carol Graham is interim Vice President and Director of the Economic Studies program at Brookings, College Park Professor at the University of Maryland, and a Senior Scientist at Gallup. Her books include: The Power of Hope: How Wellbeing Science Can Save us from Despair , The Pursuit of Happiness: An Economy of Well-Being , and Happiness Around the World: The Paradox of Happy Peasants and Miserable Millionaires , among others.

Today, she joins the show to expound on her passion for helping to improve the lives of others, the power of mentorship and the connection between hope and life satisfaction.

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Key Takeaways

00:54 – Jonathan introduces today’s guest, Carol Graham, who joins the show to discuss her background as an immigrant from Peru, why America is no longer the land of opportunity, and her passion for helping to improve lives and end poverty

15:41 – Measuring hope and life satisfaction

22:20 – Why hope matters

31:36 – The power of mentorship

36:27 – How do we manage for hope

42:47 – The impact of technology and social media on despair

51:04 – One thing Carol would change about the system

54:20 – One thing Carol would like others to know about her and the one question she would want to know the answer to

56:24 – Jonathan thanks Carol for joining the show and lets listeners know where to connect with her

Tweetable Quotes

“More recently, I would say what has been eroding our democracy in part is that erosion of our shared cohesiveness as a society and the shared belief that people used to have that they could get ahead, that this was the land of opportunity. And it’s really not.” (06:14) (Carol)

“Less happy people care more about money. Happy people care more about learning and creativity.” (14:26) (Carol)

“Hope is really linked to better future outcomes for people. People who have hope for the future end up doing better in life. It’s not rocket science. If you believe you have a future, you’re more likely to invest in it.” (22:35) (Carol)

“Despair actually takes people’s agency away. And it isn’t just their income or their employment. It’s their ability to conceive of a different future and to do something about it.” (34:42) (Carol)

“People with low levels of well-being have worse outcomes in life. And part of it is because low levels of well-being affect your behavior.” (38:53) (Carol)

“To get people out of their isolated, desperate shells and back into the community is a first step. It’s the first step towards restoring meaning and purpose in life which, again, starts to restore hope.” (49:24) (Carol)

Guest Resources

Carol’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/carol-graham-45a2a82a/

Carol’s Profile on Brookings: https://www.brookings.edu/experts/carol-graham/

Carol’s Email: cgraham@brookings.edu

Carol’s Books:

Improving the Odds: Political Strategies for Institutional Reform in Latin America: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Carol_Graham_Improving_the_Odds?id=r9B5DwAAQBAJ&hl=en&gl=US

Safety Nets, Politics, and the Poor: Transitions to Market Economies: https://www.amazon.com/Safety-Nets-Politics-Poor-Transitions/dp/0815732287

Private Markets for Public Goods: Raising the Stakes in Economic Reform: https://www.amazon.com/Private-Markets-Public-Goods-Economic/dp/0815732295

Happiness and Hardship: Opportunity and Insecurity in New Market Economies: https://www.amazon.com/Happiness-Hardship-Opportunity-Insecurity-Economies/dp/0815702418

Happiness Around the World: The Paradox of Happy Peasants and Miserable Millionaires: https://www.amazon.com/Happiness-Around-World-Miserable-Millionaires/dp/0199606285

The Pursuit of Happiness: An Economy of Well-Being: https://www.amazon.com/Pursuit-Happiness-Economy-Well-Being-Brookings/dp/0815724047#:~:text=Book%20details&text=In%20The%20Pursuit%20of%20Happiness,happiness%22%22%20into%20public%20policymaking

Happiness for All?: Unequal Hopes and Lives in Pursuit of the American Dream: https://www.amazon.com/Happiness-All-Unequal-Pursuit-American/dp/0691204551

Other Books Mentioned:

Our Kids: https://www.amazon.com/Our-Kids-American-Dream-Crisis/dp/1476769907

Mindful Money Resources

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Website: https://mindful.money

Jonathan on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jonathandeyoe


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About the Podcast

Mindful Money
Do you struggle with money? You’re not alone.
Money is a means, not an end. It’s a necessity of life for sure, but more money does not always guarantee a “good life”. Money enables many aspects of modern life, but as a dominant consideration it becomes destructive. 
The paradox is that more time and energy spent on personal finance does NOT create better outcomes. Unlike many other parts of life, we can’t create better outcomes by being smarter, spending more time, or putting in more effort.
Join Mindful Money author and experienced 40-year investor Jonathan DeYoe as he shares stories from artists, authors, entrepreneurs, and other advisors about how they mindfully minimize their need to think about money and get more out of life.
If you aren’t happy with your finances, feel like money takes more time that it should, or want to place your financial decisions into the broader context of your life, this show is for you. 
Each episode will draw the line between the “enough” activities that the academics tell us are additive to family outcomes, and those “little bit more” efforts that take time and sap energy, but do NOT improve outcomes.

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Jonathan DeYoe

Jonathan DeYoe is a best-selling author, speaker, financial advisor and angel investor. He is a husband, father and a practicing Buddhist. His simple underlying message brings a welcomed sense of order to financial chaos and restores a calm center to your financial life.