This is an article many of us just simply need to know by heart. So the next time, we feel compelled to buy or acquire that one extra thing we feel gives eternal happiness, we can pull a print out of this article and read it out aloudto it. And for those amongst you too lazy to read this...here are some good excerpts:
"Psychologists have spent decades studying the relation between wealth and happiness," writes Harvard University psychologist Daniel Gilbert in his best-selling "Stumbling on Happiness," "and they have generally concluded that wealth increases human happiness when it lifts people out of abject poverty and into the middle class but that it does little to increase happiness thereafter."
In a typical survey people are asked to rank their sense of well-being or happiness on a scale of 1 to 7, where 1 means "not at all satisfied with my life" and 7 means "completely satisfied." Of the American multimillionaires who responded, the average happiness score was 5.8. Homeless people in Calcutta came in at 2.9. But before you assume that money does buy happiness after all, consider who else rated themselves around 5.8: the Inuit of northern Greenland, who do not exactly lead a life of luxury, and the cattle-herding Masai of Kenya, whose dung huts have no electricity or running water. And proving Gilbert's point about money buying happiness only when it lifts you out of abject poverty, slum dwellers in Calcutta—one economic rung above the homeless—rate themselves at 4.6."Americans who earn $50,000 per year are much happier than those who earn $10,000 per year," writes Gilbert, "but Americans who earn $5 million per year are not much happier than those who earn $100,000 per year."(Curiously, although money doesn't buy happiness, happiness can buy money. Young people who describe themselves as happy typically earn higher incomes, years later, than those who said they were unhappy. It seems that a sense of well-being can make you more productive and more likely to show initiative and other traits that lead to a higher income.
The last excerpt above is my favorite.
Why Money Doesn’t Buy Happiness | Print Article | Newsweek.com:
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