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.