Does Money Measure Happiness?

In Sonja Lyubomirsky’s article, “How to buy happiness,”  she tells us it’s not about how much money we have, but how we spend it. In other words, she values the way the money was spent in “quality” more than the “quantity” in which the money was spent. Sonja tells us that we should be wise with our money and to not just go spend it on what will make us feel happy for the moment.  Sonja collected data from a survey filled out by college freshmen in the US to figure out what were their main goals in life. She received that 77 percent of the people said being financially well. She also spoke with an Ivy league educated plastic surgeon who says he had it all and was very wealthy. However, he told her at one point he started feeling dis motivated and though he had everything he desired, he also felt miserable. This showed that even with so much money you wouldn’t necessarily be happy. Spending our money wisely makes us much happier. Sonja states in her article that you are more likely to be happier spending for someone close to you than shopping for yourself. She also collected data from Cornell University and The University of Colorado Boulder saying “it’s the experience, not things, that make us happy.” On paragraph number four she states, “most possessions don’t tend to change after we’ve bought them, so we adapt to them a great deal faster. Once we open the box and put our new item on the shelf, or in the closet or garage, it won’t be long before we feel like it’s been there forever.” Every object/material we purchase will have its time where it’s valuable to us until eventually, it will lose its value to the point where it might not matter if we have it anymore. For example, buying a car just to impress your work buddies but in reality you hate the car. You’re pretty much stuck with it now unless of course you sell it. This then leads us to the experience we have after the purchase.

Let me give you an example, I am a Yankees Fan and this is Derek Jeter’s last season before his tenure is over, I would be satisfied if I spent my money on bleacher seats, manage to make my way through the stadium and get my Derek Jeter jersey signed by himself rather than buying seats behind home plate which are much more expensive and not get anything signed. What I’m trying to say is how you should improvise and work with what you have. It is about the effort you make that makes you happy and that ten years from now you would look back and say, ” wow, I did that!” I’ll use another example for those who couldn’t understand. After the Yankees game my friend and I went to the area where the players come out from to try and get at least one to sign our ball. The effort was running to the player’s car, waving and congratulating them on their game, asking them to sign our ball and be successful! I would have rather gone through that experience than to just make no effort and go to Modell’s and buy a duplicate signed ball. This experience would be very much remembered and it will be a memory worth having a smile for. I fully agree with Sonja on Quality over Quantity.