Can $$$ increase your :)

In a 2013 web article; How To buy Happiness: What Good is Money if it Can’t Buy Happiness, a Ph.D; Sonja Lyubomirsky argues that the way you spend money can affect your happiness. Sonja Lyubomirsky supported her claim by pointing out how money is being spend. It’s include buying materials to buying experiences and spending on others (donations, buying something for a friend). In conclusion to the article, Sonja Lyubomirsky answered her claim by saying, “The key to buying happiness… it’s not how much high our income is, but how we allocate it.” In other words, how we spend out money can make us happy or happier.

Like the previous article we read, “How to Buy Happiness?, by Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton, which argument also includes examples on how happy can one get by buying materials, experiences,  or spending on others. These two articles provide there opinion that money can buy us happiness, according to how we use it.

I agree with Sonja Lyubomirsky’s “How to Buy Happiness: What Good Is Money If It Can’t buy Happiness?” specificity the part about the way people spend money is the key to achieve happiness. People always tell me “Money can’t buy happiness,” and I disagree and this article proof that I was right in a way. There are ways to buy happiness. I don’t believe that people see that though, especially in New York. Many New Yorkers make money just to live on it. In other words, they just put it in the bank and spend it when it is needed. Other New Yorkers only spend it in materials. They would get new apartment to getting a car. Which according to this article, Lyubomirsky suggested it would not guaranteed you being happy for a long-run. There are also some New Yorkers like me who spend their money on experience with others. There are nothing better than treating yourself and some friends to karaoke. I am happy and my friends are happy. It a big boost of happiness to me. This also made me think of Christmas. When everyone usually buy things for each other and spend the time together. It’s one of the happiest time of the year. Everyone is spending money on someone else and sharing the experience with them. I feel happy when I play “Secret Santa” with my friends. I feel really happy buying something for someone else plus we doing it all together. I hope to do it again this year. I think, we can all agree that nowadays, Christmas is another word for “buying happiness”.

However after reading two articles about money can actually buy happiness, it made be questioned myself; is there a negative outcome from using money to buy happiness?,  are happiness bought from happiness different from happiness that are “free, if it does, in a scale which one is higher. Stupidly, I also questioned myself, if money actually can buy happiness, can it also buy other emotions, sadness even. I hope not and if it does, I hope it won’t occur to me.

An investment in happiness

In the Article “How to buy happiness” by Sonja Lyubomirsky , the author stresses the point that buying happiness is possible. By this she means what the individual does with their money , the choices they make lead to happiness. She uses various studies to prove her point. One of these include a study done in Cornell university and University of Colorado , that came to the conclusion that buying experiences produce a greater feeling than buying materials. Lyubomirsky feels that spending money on memories is more worth it than buying a possession. She says this is because the feeling of happiness that comes from the possession fades away, and you get used to it, but when you create a memory you can always go back to it, you will always feel that feeling of happiness when you think of it, when you talk about it. She says you buy happiness when you spend money on something you are able to share with somebody. This means paying for a trip for you and someone else, instead of buying something that is only for you . When you do so you are creating a stronger relationship with others, you are experiencing things with someone else, the feeling of happiness accompanies this. Lyubomirsky feels that you are able to buy happiness because of the way you are able to spend money on creating experiences, memories, Moments, which produce happiness. She says you are less likely to compare your memories with others. You may talk about them, and share what happened, but you won’t say your memories are better or less than that of someone else’s. On the contrary if you buy a car (a possession) and you talk about cars with someone else , you might realize that you feel your car is better than there’s or vice versa you may feel your car is better than theirs, this doesn’t produce happiness, it might actually make an individual feel less than. The idea that it is not how much you have but what you do with what you have is a constant theme in her article. Towards the end she speaks of this idea, that you should spend money on things that will lead you to the feelings of competence, relatedness, and autonomy. This is because she believes the feeling of happiness that will be produced will be long term. And finally she says that if you should spend money on something it should be buying time , meaning don’t overwork yourself, and when you are able to pay someone to do things you can save time from doing. So you are able to spend time on more important things that contribute to your happiness.
After reading Sonja Lyubomirsky’s article I reflected on my own life. I thought back to experiences and memories I had , and found myself smiling. Then I looked at my closet and realized I have about 12 to 14 pairs of shoes, but they are nothing special, they don’t really cause any feelings of happiness. They probably did at the time I bought them, but after time has passed they are simply just shoes to me. I share this because it proves what Lyubomirsky said about the temporary feeling possessions create, that temporary happiness. I believe that she is right when she says you can buy happiness, by using your money wisely. I know that when I spend my money on creating something, like when I go out to eat with a friend or going to a mall with them, I feel good about myself, and it’s a sort of investment you make, you use your money to go somewhere or to do something and what comes from that are memories. Memories that you’ll always be able to talk about look back on and remember. You invest your money in order to create this feeling of happiness for you, in the long term. I think when someone says you can buy happiness, most of us say no you can’t. Because we create the relationship that your buying materialistic things, things for yourself and that would make us selfish right (?) But after reading this article I realized you can buy happiness. Your buying happiness all the time, when you treat someone, take them to diner, taking your mom shopping, going to a movie with someone, the feelings we get , the happiness is there, its produced. If we don’t spend our money wisely ,well than buying happiness becomes impossible. Believing that things like cars, purses, shoes etc. will make us happy is a false hope. This is because you’re not able to share an experience with someone; you are doing things for yourself. Although looking at things having them now make you feel joy or content, after a while it gets old, you get bored and the feeling of happiness is no longer there. That is why we must make wise decisions on how and where we spend our money, failing to do so will result in temporary feelings.

Happiness Archive #3: summary/response to Lyubomirsky article

In Psychology Today’s article “How To Buy Happiness” by Sonja Lyubomirsky, she writes about the association of money to happiness. She goes ahead to describe the difference between the experiences and the material things bought with money. She also tells about how spending money on others can result in sustaining ones well being and when spending money, it should be on “need-satisfying goals.

After reading the article I was convinced by the writer’s compelling points of buying happiness. Although money can’t buy happiness it can buy experiences that will leave a longer lasting impression in our memories. Making it possible to revisit at any point and time. Also when buying an experience it may bring us closer to others. A simple movie date with a loved one, can provide happiness that you both can share. Wherein the material things that we may spend allot of money on, such as, cars,jewelry, tech devices and gadgets don’t last forever. After awhile they become invalid and useless ending the temporary happiness that was created when the items were bought.

Possessions are more likely to be compared. giving us a sense of insecurities when someone comes with newest modeled car, or new version gadget. When we compare ourselves to others we are less happy. We might feel insufficient, bringing all types of self doubt; thus, not being happy.

We can also have a great deal of happiness when we spend our money on something to better ourselves, grow; Such as an education. I spend money coming to and from school, on books, on copies, on clothes, etc…. but there is a bigger picture. The fact that the money being spent is to further myself, it adds to my well being. My Bachelors degree will be very self satisfying. It will contribute to my happiness. Giving me the ability to be a better person , by helping others. Whether it be with my career or just being a strong, proud,African American, single mother. I will have something to show and prove to my children. So yes, I’m buying my happiness through experience. that I will someday share with my children, my clients or maybe even someday, THE WORLD!!!!!!!!!