Do you think that earning a certain amount of income or reaching a particular level of wealth will make you happy?
I thought it was a little strange that anyone would be asking that question online. It turns out however there is some research on that very question!
In a paper titled “From wealth to well-being? Money matters but less than people think“, Akin, Norton and Dunn found that those with a comfortable income are happier than those in poverty (seems pretty obvious). But once you reach the comfortable standard (which they found was about $75,000 in the US), additional income doesn’t buy you happiness. What I found most interesting about their research is that it’s what you do with your money which is important when it comes to happiness. Spending on ourselves by buying bigger TV’s and cars is less effective than buying experiences or or even spending less when it comes to turning money into happiness.
When you think about reaching a monetary goal, do you think getting to it will actually make you happy? When you have nothing, $20,000 seems like a lot. If you’ve got $100,000 and you really want to get to $500,000 it seems like a huge deal. But when you get there you realise nothing really changes and try to work out what’s next.
As I talk about in this video, I don’t think it is reaching the $1million (or whatever the number is) that is important, it’s what that allows you to do in your life. Check out the video here:
Are you focussed just on money to make you happy?