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Does Money buy Happiness?

Importance of money

Does money really make the world go round? Money is at the forefront of almost every decision we make, as the majority of people have the focus of growing their income, savings, spending and investing. Money is used in most people's every day in one way or another and it dictates a lot of our actions. A lot of ordinary everyday tasks and aspects could not happen without money. Money acts as a general medium of exchange. Everyone has a different perspective on money depending on their upbringing, careers, relationships, day-to-day and governing. Our whole lives revolve around monetary figures. But does money really buy happiness?

Is money the main factor that contributes to happiness?

Does money buy happiness? Possibly, but it is not a simple question to answer. Money may contribute to happiness but there are lots of other factors that play a part, for example; how you spend your money, what matters to you, cultural values, where you live and who you surround yourself with. Money can be seen as important to happiness. Having higher income can result in better health, nicer homes and nicer experiences. People find joy in having nice items, going to nice places, going on holidays and having a nice house. However money can only make us happy up to a certain point. How you spend your money matters, helping others with your money and buying 'experiences' can lead to happiness. Spending money on experiences and others rather than tangible goods, results in the greatest feelings of happiness.

People with more money are probably going to be more satisfied with life then those individuals who do not have much money. People with less money are more likely to have more everyday stresses than richer individuals. Those with less money may stress over affording food and drink, a place to live, finding work and taking care of children, whereas those with more money are financially stable so do not have these worries in life.

What aspects of life make an individual truly happy?

There are certain aspects in life that make people happier. If an individual's basic needs are met then the chances are they will most likely have a happier and positive outlook on life. Aspects like good health, financial stability and a sense of fulfilment and purpose fill those basic needs. Having close relationships and friendships with other people and watching those you love succeed and be happy makes up for a lot of our happiness. As well as this, having a hobby that you love, volunteering to people in need and taking part in random acts of kindness will make an individual happy and feel a sense of joy.

Money and mental health

There is a cyclical link known between financial worries and mental health problems. Feeling down can make it really challenging to manage your money and stressing about money problems can have really negative effects on your mental wellbeing. Having monetary problems can lead to anxiety, depression, stress and even substance abuse. Some individuals may not be able to afford the essential things you need to live and stay well, like housing, food, water or medication, which could result in anxiety, panic or sleeping problems. The constant feeling of worry surrounding money could lead to sleep problems which could result in health problems. Having money problems can affect individual's social life and relationships, people may feel isolated or alone if they cannot afford to do the things they truly want to do. People with debt problems are significantly more likely to experience some sort of mental health problems. 46% of people that have debt problems also have a mental health problem.

So does money really buy happiness?

The simple answer is no, it is unlikely that money will buy happiness. However, it may help you achieve happiness to an extent. Money can buy you experiences, objects and things for others that may enable you to feel joy from. Being financially stable is more likely to make you happy but that does not mean you need to have piles of money! Money will not result in long term happiness. True happiness is more likely to be found through other non-financial means, like spending time with people you love, relationships, achievements and experiences in life. On top of this, money can also have negative effects on people's mental health which implies it does have negative effects as well as positive. So overall, money is important to happiness to a certain extent buy cannot true long lasting happiness.

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