Jeremy puts forth the following three reasons why money doesn't make us happy:
It's relative income that's important
Jeremy says money is relative. He says “we don't mind so much about our actual level of income, so long as we're earning more than other people around us. Unfortunately as we earn more money we're likely to be surrounded by richer people so we often end up failing to take advantage of the positive comparison.”
Material goods don't make us happy
Jeremy says “acquiring things like houses and cars only have a transient effect on happiness.” Jeremy even states that materialism makes us less happy.
I think we can all somewhat relate to this comment. We often strive for a material item and sometimes, after achieving it, there is almost a letdown as the journey was more exciting than reaching the mountaintop. However, let’s say you love to jet-ski; the acquisition of the sea-doo would seem to have a lasting effect on happiness, so I am not sure I am 100% in agreement on this one.
People don't shift to enjoyable activities when they are rich
Jeremy says “people who earn more money don't spend their time enjoying themselves, they spend their time at work, in activities likely to cause them more stress and tension….In fact, to earn the money, they have to spend more time at work, and commuting to and from work.”
Although true in some cases, I certainly observe many people golfing 3-4 times a week or hanging out at their cottage in the summer enjoying themselves and their financial wealth.
Jeremy concludes that “in fact, people with more money and status are just more satisfied with their lives, not happier”.
Jeremy asks an interesting question in his blog posting and I will conclude this posting with the same question, “before you scoff at this think about whether you'd rather be satisfied or happy?”
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