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Who Says Money Can't Buy Happiness?

Taking a closer look at the pros and cons of having a ton of dosh

Stacks of money

We need money for everything; food, clothes, transport, the list goes on. But at what point does enough mean enough? And when does money stop buying our happiness?

What is happiness?

happy, happiness, smiley face, laughing

Happiness can be put quite simply as the state of well-being and contentment. It is the experience of joy. In a more scientific sense, happiness is managed in the control centre of the brain, the frontal lobe. When we do or see something we love our brain releases dopamine and seranotnin - chemicals corresponding to happiness.

So where does money come into this?

Well, in order to do some of the things we love, such as shopping, travelling, or even buying essentials, we need money to do so. Money is used globally as a medium of exchange for products and services within an economy and those without it struggle, being unable to afford basic necessities such as food and shelter. Money is a priority in the life we live.

This is where the commonly known phrase 'money buys happiness' comes along, suggesting we experience the sensation of happiness through making buying.

Money can buy happiness

money, rich, grandma, dollars

Imagine having so much money that you could buy anything, we'd all like that. No more working, no more stressing about how much something costs or if you have the money to pay for your bills. You can buy whatever you want whenever you want. Had a rough day? No worries, just go shopping!

Knowing you have security and are financially covered for anything is something that provides great joy and relief. Without the stress caused by worrying about money, we are able to free up our minds to think about other things that make us happy - we have more time to think about the things we love.

With enough money for everything we can plan experiences, creating memories that stick around for a lifetime, we can find new hobbies to pass time or even buy ourselves new things.

Money allows us to give to others. Not only can we look after ourselves, we can look after family too, through helping them with basic needs, sharing gifts and treating them to nice things. Money has the potential to open new doors, with opportunities such as wealth and fame, which is highly sought after.

Or can it?

little money, sad, bored, money

Money can only get you so far, sure you're free to buy anything, but is that all that makes you happy?

Other things in life can cause a person to be happy, a main one being family and relationships. These things cannot be bought, especially if you desire true, meaningful connections. Nine times out of ten, those with large amounts of money seeking this sense of happiness will struggle, as they are only seen as a figure by others. They are only wanted for their money, not for themselves. Theres nothing happy about fake relationships and lacking the experience of real heart-felt love from someone.

Many people jump straight to the shops to give them that boost of happiness, even in times of sadness. But this is only temporary, you can only buy so much. What do you do when you get bored of the things you've bought, do you just buy more? Buying things to bring you happiness will never leave you fully satisfied, it is temporary happiness.

Take retail therapy into account, when one feels depressed they go shopping to feel better, causing a dependancy on it until it stops making them happy, leaving them just as depressed as before.

Earning money through working, vocation, gives you a purpose. You worked for that, you earnt it. This is what gives you true satisfaction, knowing you not only got that money fair and square but you also contributed to someone else's happiness by working with them, contributing to a society. When one has a purpose, one experiences joy and therefore happiness. Money cannot buy this happiness.

So whats the verdict?


Money can definitely make life more comfortable and open up opportunities for new experiences, but the connection between money and happiness is complicated. Even though money can bring some happiness, it is not long-lasting, only temporary.

Whats the limit? Studies have shown that there is a correlation between high income and increased

happiness up to a certain point. Beyond this, the relationship becomes weaker. Factors such as relationships, personal values, and experiences also play a significant role in determining overall life satisfaction and happiness.

So while money is great and can bring happiness, it's not the only factor. To feel truly happy, you need to balance life with non-monetary things too, such as surrounding yourself with friends and family, developing yourself, and having a sense of purpose. This will give you a well-rounded, happier life.

Money cannot buy all happiness.

What should I do?

If the key to happiness is having a balance between money and non-monetary things why not create a balance for yourself?

If you have a job you'll know that feeling of payday anticipation, wondering what to spend your hard-earned money on. But why not save it? I find it is best to both save and spend. Save the money for future purposes like a trip away with loved ones or put it towards paying for bills to have that sense of security. Spend some money to treat yourself every now and then with things like clothes or on a night out. Make spending money special, not a dependancy.

Money is not needed for everything, enjoy the little things like hanging out with friends or going on walks in your free time, both of which are free of cost and I personally couldn't live without them! Take time to focus on the little things we often take for granted, they're worth just as much as the things that we buy.


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