The Brattier The Kid, The More Successful They'll Be (Says Science)

Photo: WeHeartIt
Self, Family

Your rebellious child might turn out OK, afterall.

Is your precious little angel kind of a brat? You know they have a good heart and you love them, but their constant disobedience and talking back to almost everyone can be frustrating, to say the least.

Before you consider military school, a new study in Development Psychology suggests that your naughty child will probably grow up to earn more than his/her well-behaving peers.

Researchers with the University of Luxembourg, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the Free University of Berlin tracked data on 745 people in Luxembourg from the ages of 12 to 52, and discovered that those who defied authority as children tended to have higher incomes as grownups.

"Rule-breaking and defiance of parental authority was the best non-cognitive predictor of higher income after accounting for IQ, parental socio-economic status, and educational attainment," says the study. It turns out that kids who defied their parents tended to stay in school longer and were more likely to pursue higher education.

It should be noted that occupational success was measured by the researchers using an index that ranks careers based on prestige and socioeconomic status. The researchers floated some theories on why their conclusion might be the case.

"We might assume that students who scored high on this scale might earn a higher income because they are more willing to be more demanding during critical junctures, such as when negotiating salaries or raises," they wrote. 

There was also another more concerning reason that disobedient children can grow up to be big time money makers. "We also cannot rule out that individuals who are likely or willing to break the rules get higher pay for unethical reasons."

Next time Junior gets sent home with a note from his teacher, think to yourself that he may end up to be the next Steve Jobs or Richard Branson.


Explore YourTango