Can money buy happiness?


An age-old and unresolved question, perhaps for this reason, that keeps on asking and wondering: can money buy happiness? Do you think you can get it? When thinking about whether money can buy happiness, you might consider some luxurious expenses such as gourmet meals, vacations abroad, expensive gifts, a house with a view, a comfortable car, and so on. Well, what’s wrong with that, of course money can buy happiness you might think. While you may be right, some research examining the relationship between money and happiness does not support this idea. But don’t worry, there are several studies supporting this idea. Let’s take a look at how the studies looked at the relationship between money and happiness.

Many studies show that we humans have unlimited needs and desire more as our desires are satisfied, in short, we never reach the saturation point, so increasing the amount of money does not have a satisfactory effect after the point. On the other hand, other research indicates that what makes us happy or triggers a positive reward response in our brain is the satisfaction of our basic biological needs. In other words, when we meet our needs, such as food, sleep, water, air, security, shelter, we experience a sense of reward and motivation. Therefore, we know that money will help us meet these needs more easily. However, according to the results of this study, there is an upper limit to how useful even biologically important things can be. For example, eating is pleasurable, but we may feel uncomfortable when we eat too much after we are full. According to the researchers, the same is true for money. Money that comfortably provides for our needs up to a certain point; While rewards induce feelings of motivation and happiness, more money does not mean more happiness.

According to another study from San Francisco State University, we are more likely to feel happy when we have financial security, but the more money is not trusted with us, the more its ability to make us happy is lost. Instead of money, emotional events like traveling, starting new relationships, helping others can make you more happy than money.

Working at Ghent University, Dr. Another study by Ruth Krebbs looks at the relationship between money and happiness from a different perspective. According to research, unexpected, surprising things are more beneficial for the human brain and therefore more satisfying than familiar things. While having a regular income and getting paid on a certain day of each month seems safe and enjoyable, receiving unexpected money, such as receiving a bonus, has a much more pleasant effect.

Harvard professor John Yakhimovich also addressed this issue. “I think we are missing something if we only focus on the happiness that money can bring. We also need to think about all the worries this can save us from.” he fits. And he states that he believes money can reduce stress in everyday life, thereby making people happier. He says the link between money and happiness is getting stronger, especially in times of global troubles, economic crises and famines, adding: “Whether money is running from the rain, calling an Uber, or solving an unexpected hospital bill; It can help us get rid of obstacles in our path and feel calmer and more in control of ourselves.”

money-happiness curve

Different studies show different results on the relationship between money and happiness, but what does the Global Wellness Institute, which has its finger on the pulse of the wellness world, say about this? According to an article by economist Thierry Malleret of the Global Wellness Institute, there is a clear link between money and happiness or subjective well-being; but up to a certain threshold. Financial health is an important route to access to all other forms of health for all who lack sufficient means; because it is impossible to feel good physically and mentally, being in a state of financial deprivation. On the other hand, while the link between money and happiness is stronger the further income falls below the scale; The higher you climb the income ladder, the weaker you become, because there are many downsides to increasing income.

About a decade ago, Nobel Prize winners in economics Angus Deaton and Daniel Kahneman discovered that $75,000 a year (about $100,000 today) is an amount that optimizes a person’s daily life, and that any extra amount can reduce negative emotions such as anxiety, restlessness and emotional disorders. stress, found that the probability is low. That is, it comes out in excess after this threshold, does not have a strong effect on reducing negative emotions and situations. On the other hand, Jan Emmanuel De Neve, Director of the Social Security Research Center at the University of Oxford, and his colleagues have found that the “saturation point” on the money-happiness curve is between $120,000 and $140,000. and the curve flattens out with income above that. That is, happiness that increased to the point with money remained stable after the point. In addition to these studies, some studies suggest that the money-happiness curve does not stay flat after the saturation point, on the contrary, the curve starts to go down. In other words, every penny after a life-optimizing income can lower happiness levels. Surprisingly, these data indicate that money cannot buy happiness. So why could it be?

According to Thierry Malleret, this is because happiness or general well-being lies both in experiencing positive emotions and avoiding negative ones. “Those who have a lot of money know that they cannot buy what we really value (for example, friendship, love, time). They also know that big money changes the nature of our relationships with others, sometimes poisoning them. Maleret said: “the relationship between money and happiness is non-linear and varies from person to person” He ends with his word.

When we look at the modern world, it becomes obvious that we need money to do most things; however, this situation can be explained by saying that the association of money with happiness is more indirect as a means to an end than the direct reward itself…

What do you think is the connection between money and happiness?

You might be interested: 7 Scientific Facts That Experience Brings Happiness That Money Can’t Buy

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