Can money really buy you happiness?

Can money really buy you happiness?

According to a study it can, but it comes at a cost...

A man in a sweater celebrating with money in the air
A man in a sweater celebrating with money in the air/Pexels

We never really doubted it, but there have been some with the contention that even the richest man can be unhappy at times. 

But researcher and Nobel prize-winning psychologist, Daniel Kahneman, and a group of scientists have revealed that money can indeed buy happiness. 

In 2010, a paper put forth by Kahneman and economist Angus Deaton suggested that "happiness goes up with income until the relationship starts to 'flatten' at between $60,000 and $90,000 a year." (The National News)

An updated study that was conducted in March 2023 revealed that as long as a person enjoys a baseline level of happiness, the more money they have increases their overall happiness. 

All are based on an income that totals more than $100,000 a year. That's a total of approximately R1.9-million. 

"That is according to a study of 33,391 people living in the US, published on March 1 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal. It found the effect can be observed in salaries up to $500,000, though conclusive data beyond that level was not available." (The National News)

Software product manager Matthew Killingsworth, who researched the same topic in 2021, did not find any plateau. 

He also noted: “For very poor people, money clearly helps a lot”, Mr Killingsworth told the New Scientist. “But if you have a decent income and you’re still miserable, the source of your misery probably isn’t something money can fix.” (The National News)

What we found interesting though, researchers found that the "overall emotional effect of more money on a person is small in comparison to other circumstances". 

A simple example was the comparison to the feeling one gets with two days off at the end of a week. Clearly there are some things that are better than the feeling money gives you...

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