#3 Using Money the Right Way to Be Happy

In “How to Buy Happiness” by Sonja Lyubomirsky, She  discusses how others may use money as a reason to be “happy”. Many people have money and buy themselves luxuries that they want and then claim to be happy. But in this article an Ivy League educated plastic surgeon says that he ” had difficulty feeling motivated”. This shows that “he realized he had everything wanted, but was completely miserable”. With this being shown, one can see that having a lot of money and everything you want, is not necessarily being happy. Many wealthy people out there have so many luxuries and an abundance of money yet there wealthiness doesn’t compliment their happiness. As people say that money is power, both Sonja Lyubomirsky, Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton, from the op-ed article “How to Buy Happiness” argue that money is better related to peoples happiness when they use the money for unselfish reasons other than material possessions. Both articles support the fact that “buying happiness is to spend money on others instead of ourselves”. Many studies show that experiences and memories make us happier than materialistic possessions. Luxurious things like the latest phone that came out may make you happy temporarily, it is only a matter of time until it gets scratched, dull, and broken. As in spending money on a family trip may be more meaningful because even months after you come back you can remember those good times and it can spark a smile any day. Sonja says in her article that some research has shown that “spending money on need-satisfying goals…can trigger  ‘upward spirals’ -that is, streams of happy moods etc.” Spending money to satisfy others can make people feel better and happier. So that is to say that spending your money on a movie for your little brother can bring you more happiness than buying yourself a new watch. Money supplies our well-being and helps us survive this is true, but using money to be happy is more complicated then that. We think we are happy because we have money but happiness is deeper than that. Studies show that we are more happy when we use our money to do “satisfying pursuits”. In other words we feel good about ourselves when we give to others. Using money to have more “free” times with those who we love, can increase our happiness level. like Sonja says in her article “Sharing with others also stimulates positive social interactions, spawns new friendships and relationships, and improves old ones… extending generosity is one of the simplest and most powerful ways to bolster and sustain well-being”. We buy happiness by choosing to spend money on meaningful things.

Money, Happiness, and “the American Dream”

After reading “How to Buy Happiness: by Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norman i came to comprehend their opinion on happiness, money and “the american dream”. The article states “how we use are money may matter as much or more than how much of it we’ve got”. This statement is true, if you think about it, alot of people believe and say money makes you happy or money buys you happiness but in reality it does not. Its more like what we choose to do with the money that’s what makes us happy. The articles says “a growing body of reaserch shows that the mere whiff of money draws out our selfish sides”. This is true in many occasions, many people have betrayed their close friends and family for just a couple of bucks. With just a bit of money coming towards them many people become selfish without noticing. In addition if you notice as soon as one gets paid we want to spoil ourselves with material things. As i read the article i asked my friend what she would do with one million dollars and with no hesitation she replied “move out”. This as addition to evidence from the article shows that when we have money we think about our wants confusing them with what we need, we dont think about what we could do for others as our first priority. My friend like many other people want the “american dream” of buying there own land or house, but we dont care to see that the land or house will only be temprary happiness. The article states “Dozens of studies show that people get more happiness from buying experiences than from buying material things”. The article supports this by saying that these experiences “makes us who we are” and i suppor it by saying that sharing wonderful experiences  that we can later remember is way much better than buying something that can break. As you see the diffrence is alot, material happiness is only temporary while experiences can last a life time. Many people want to live ” the american dream” and buy a house with luxurius things but even the wealthiest man with the ideal house can not be as happy as a regular citezen renting an apartment. The difference is enjoying money or things with others will make you happier than wasting your money on things you would enjoy more yourself.