MTV survey says spiritual teens are happier

MTV and the Associated Press recently surveyed the happiness of young people ages 13-24.   Guess what they found?   Young people who consider spirituality the most important thing in their lives are happier than those who don’t.  That’s the good news.

The not-so-good news is that only 44% consider themselves “spiritual,” and only 10% say that spirituality is the most important thing in their lives.  We’ve got our work cut out for us.  Here’s a summary of the survey results:

  1. General happiness — 65% of young people say they’re happy.  But, when ethnicity is considered, 72% of whites are happy, but only 56% of blacks and 51% of Hispanics.  I am sure that poverty and opportunity are factors here, but these statistics warrant further review.
  2. Parents, family, and relationships — Amazingly, parents are seen as an “overwhelmingly positive influence” in the lives of young people.  But, here’s an interesting reversal of #1 — 30% of blacks and Hispanics identify family as the thing that brings them the most happiness, contrasted to only 15% of whites!   
  3. Religion and spirituality — 44% say that religion and spirituality are either “a very important or the single most important” thing in their lives.  80% of those who say that spirituality is the most important are happy with life in general; in contrast 60% who say spirituality is not important at all are happy with life in general. 
  4. Fortune and fame — Almost no respondents said money was the source of their happiness, but many cited financial problems as a source of unhappiness.  70% want to be rich, but just 29% want to be famous. 
  5. Technology — 50% say the internet alone makes them feel happier, and 50% say they never turn off their cell phones. 

Obviously, the implications for church and youth ministry are trememdous here.  You can read more about the survey at or

One thought on “MTV survey says spiritual teens are happier”

Comments are closed.