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Can money buy happiness?

Hello, everyone! Today, let’s discuss an eternal topic: Can money buy happiness? Do you think having money can…

Hello, everyone! Today, let’s discuss an eternal topic: Can money buy happiness? Do you think having money can bring happiness? Fancy cars, mansions, traveling the world—doing whatever you want? Or do you believe happiness cannot be measured by money, and true love, friendship, and health are the most important?

I once interviewed a billionaire who told me he feels lonely every day. This made me ponder: Can money buy happiness? “Did you know that the wealthiest 1% of the world’s population owns half of the global wealth? So, are they happier than ordinary people?

Viewpoint 1: Positive correlation between money and happiness

Firstly, let’s explore the positive correlation between money and happiness.

  • Money can satisfy basic needs like food, housing, and healthcare, providing security.
  • For example, someone living in a slum, if able to own their own house, would experience increased happiness.
  • Money can enable better education, job opportunities, and leisure experiences, improving quality of life.
  • For instance, someone with a good education is more likely to find a well-paying job and have a comfortable living environment.
  • Princeton University’s research suggests that in the United States, happiness increases with income until it reaches $75,000 per year.
  • A survey of Chinese people found a positive correlation between subjective happiness and income levels.
  • Mr. Wang used to be an ordinary laborer with a meager income and high life stress. After working hard and starting his own business, he became a millionaire. Now, with his own company, luxury home, and worry-free life, he says he is much happier.

Viewpoint 2: Non-linear relationship between money and happiness

However, the relationship between money and happiness is not positively correlated.

  • Experiential happiness: Research indicates that experiential happiness tends to plateau or decline after a certain income level.
  • For example, a person with a billion-dollar fortune may not be happier than someone with a million-dollar fortune.
  • Money can’t buy true love: Money can buy material pleasures but not genuine emotions, friendships, and health.
  • For instance, a wealthy person may have many friends, but those friends may only value their wealth.
  • Excessive pursuit of money: Chasing after money excessively can lead to strained relationships, high work stress, and decreased happiness.
  • For example, someone solely focused on wealth might neglect family and friends, ultimately feeling lonely and empty.
  • Research from the University of Pennsylvania shows that experiential happiness increases with income, even with an income exceeding $75,000.
  • A survey of wealthy individuals found that, despite having more wealth, their happiness is not necessarily higher than that of ordinary people.
  • Ms. Li, a successful entrepreneur with a fortune in the billions, feels lonely because of her busy work schedule despite her wealth.

Money is like seawater—the more you drink, the thirstier you become. The relationship between money and happiness is complex. For most people, higher income can bring greater happiness. However, money is not the sole determinant of happiness. Other factors, such as relationships, health, personal values, etc., also significantly affect happiness.

So, can money buy happiness? The answer depends on how you define “happiness.” If you believe happiness is having more material pleasures, then money can help you achieve that. However, if you see happiness as a broader concept, including true love, friendship, health, etc., money is just one factor influencing happiness. Remember, money is only a part of happiness, not the whole. In conclusion, here’s a quote for everyone: “Money can’t buy true love, but true love can make you happier.”

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