Do You Need Money to Be Happy?


It's easy to answer "No" to this question. However, money is valuable because it buys food for people and their families and puts a roof over their heads. It also can buy us ice cream and ice cream makes me happy! LOL!


I think the important thing to think about in terms of money and happiness is not what money can do for you but what you can choose to do with the money you earn which can then can bring you happiness.


A really cool aspect to life is we get to choose how we want to live. We can choose to spend money on a cool car, the most awesome gaming system, the biggest and best flat screen TV, and none of those things are wrong to spend our hard earned money on.


I have recently read about a team of Harvard researchers who surveyed people about their spending on themselves, their spending on others and their happiness, they found that spending on oneself does not boost wellbeing/happiness. However, spending money on others does boost wellbeing/happiness and it appears to be as important to people's happiness as the total amount of money they make.


Spending Money On Experiences and Memories

A really cool way to choose to spend your money is to buy experiences such as going out to dinner or taking a vacation to increase our own happiness and the happiness of others. Get this: experiences last while material purchases fade. Even if you feel better immediately after your purchase, studies show that our satisfaction with material goods decreases over time.


But if we use our money to buy pleasant experiences, we get the benefit of looking forward to the event, the actual experience, and in some cases, decades of great memories. Material items lose their newness, but we can relive memories indefinitely. Spending on experiences boosts our spirits for the long term.


Gotta love the GREAT time I have spending time with my dog pals going out for a nice meal!

We don't get bored with fond memories like we do with tangible objects.


Now don't get me wrong, buying material things are really cool and fun but deep down inside, money and happiness may be according the the Harvard researchers more about spending on experiences, memories and spending on others.


Two Recommendations for Boosting Financial Happiness

  1. Buy experiences--such as a vacation and outings with friends or loved ones.

  2. Spend on others instead of solely on material possessions.


©2019 by Michael Brown.