Our society values money. Whole sections in newspapers are devoted to it, and our politicians are always promising to get us more. Because of this, many of us believe that more money will bring more happiness. But the research indicates that it isn’t so clear cut.
Of course, money is essential when it comes to meeting our basic needs for food, shelter, and safety. The reality for many people is that wellbeing is severely impacted because these basic needs are not met.
But beyond meeting our needs, does more money automatically increase our satisfaction with life? Does it matter how we spend the money we have? The relationship between money and wellbeing may be more nuanced than we think.
Does money bring happiness?
- YES if it is needed to meet basic needs (researchers agree)
- NO if it is used for luxury goods (some debate among researchers here)
- YES if it is used for fun experiences (some researchers theorize)
- YES if used to connect with friends and family (some researchers theorize)
Happiness is much more than money
Research indicates that people who buy themselves time for fun activities, friends, and family increase their wellbeing. So check out the Relationship and Community sections of the wellbeing model.