A common assumption in the media and everywhere else is that being rich means that one is happy. The debate on money and happiness has been going on for a while. There is a belief that the more money one has, the more comfortable he/she becomes. With money, one can buy the basic needs. Though money can satisfy our physical needs, we need to understand that happiness is not material. Instead, satisfaction is a more profound natural feeling that comes out of a person and is not necessarily dependent on money. What we need to understand, therefore, is that money does not bring happiness as many people would imagine.
For long, people have not understood that money can only help a person in making individual choices. Having large amounts of money does not necessarily lead to happiness. The belief that being rich is having a lot of money is often misconstrued (Badiou 75). Given a chance, it is evident that most people are likely to choose riches. However, we should ask ourselves if money can make others to love us. The desire of human beings is the need to love and be loved in return. It is the feeling that we possess that should be of importance compared to the financial status of an individual. Regardless of the amount of money that one possesses, happiness cannot be bought. Cases of pretense to get monetary gains from other people have been on the rise. People have shown superficial love to others to satisfy their selfish interest. In most cases, relationships of this kind do not end up in the best way. Therefore, the perception that riches bring happiness in a relationship should not be taken seriously.
Riches cannot be considered to be a source of happiness. Riches can enable a person to have access to more resources and luxuries in life. However, the excitement that is brought about by monetary gains temporary. In some instances, you might find people with riches indulging in precarious activities as a way of self-fulfillment. It explains that wealth only helps us to focus on wants instead of needs. Happiness is one of the requirements in n life which can only be fulfilled if one has peace of mind (Badiou 90). The misconception we have that money is the source of happiness ought to change if we are to experience the real meaning of happiness. Contrary to the popular belief that money can offer us happiness, the contrary has proven to be true. People with less money do not have many luxuries in life as rich.
In relationships, riches cannot guarantee a person the happiness they need. It is the personality of a person that matters. A person may be wealthy, but if his/her character is terrible, people may not want to be associated with them. A person with a better personality is likely to attract friends or lovers, who can, in turn, offer them the gratification that they may need thus leading to happiness. People with evil personalities, on the other hand, are likely to be shunned by other people. Few individuals can wish to be around a person with a lousy personality. Even when the person has money, the few friends who hang around them are likely to be there because of money.
Similar sentiments are evident when it comes to love (Pischke 120). Money cannot buy happiness or make people love you. Buying the feelings of another person is impossible. It is not strange to married people who do not love each other. They might be in the marriage because of monetary gains. In most cases, these marriages are likely to end up in catastrophe. In many relationships, it is the valuable time that a person spends with his/ her family that brings about happiness. Money can be a fuelling factor in the strengthening of a relationship but it ought not to be seen as the source of happiness. In all situations, the family has to be put in the front. The time an individual spends with his/her family is crucial I comparison to the amount of money that a person has. Though rich people think that money is a source of happiness, this notion is often misconstrued. For instance, a person can use the money to buy gifts and other presents for another but what matters in a relationship is the time and affection that people share. It is the time spent together in a relationship that gives people a sense of identity and selfhood.
Money is crucial since it enables people to cater for their primary needs. However, money should not form the basic underlying principle for our source of happiness. It is the reason why I believe that contrary to the belief by many people that money brings joy, happiness is not long lasting and can only be for a temporary period (Burke 100). Until we realize that money is just a source of temporary happiness, then we are likely to suffer heartbreaks. True happiness can only come from within a person. People who idolize money are likely to be frustrated in the long run. They are likely to focus more on looking for money and forget that their loved ones expect to be shown love. Money can be a cause of stress and frustrations in any relationship. People who have money often think that their money can buy them any form of happiness. However, in most cases, they end up with frustrations especially when they are rejected. Instead of using the money to gain happiness in a relationship, a person can try to adopt other means. For instance, developing hobbies that bring fun and relaxation can be a way of bringing happiness.
We often torture ourselves looking for happiness in the wrong places, yet there are better ways of creating our happiness. For instance, having time to relax is the best solution for a healthy life. We ought to learn therefore that though money is necessary, it should not be the definition of happiness in our lives. Wealthy people put emphasis more on their luxuries compared to the attention they give to their necessities. However, this perception ought to change since material things are likely to fade off over time. People also tend to look for other things that can get them occupied. In life, we should focus more on better ways of gaining happiness which is a primary need for every person.
Money has also been associated more with misery more than bringing happiness. While searching for more money, people are likely to compete against each other (Burke 150). As a result, they may end up looking for options of making more money and lose interest in the things that satisfy them. When a person is focused on searching for money he/she rarely finds time to do other things that can make them happy. It is because they usually spend all their time working and rarely have time to relax. Good health symbolizes happiness. However, most of us think that having more money is a guarantee that one can cover their health schemes. Though money can cater to good medical covers and pay for proper medical services, it is not a guarantee of happiness and good health for an individual.
It is clear that even if a person has money, the money cannot be a cure for certain terminal illnesses. Health is more important than money. One might have a lot of money, but if he or she is not healthy, then happiness remains an illusion. Therefore, good health is better than having lots of money in the banks. It is high time that people realize that money is not a source of happiness and look for other ways of finding happiness.
It is essential to notice that money can only contribute to the happiness of meeting the basic needs. A person’s level of income does not directly determine his/ her level of happiness. It is the way that the individual can channel the earnings to purposes that can probably bring satisfaction and happiness. People who have a lot of money have been known to get their comfort and happiness by giving to charity. There are satisfaction and gratuity in the act of giving. Having vast amounts of money does not guarantee happiness, but it is the deeds of an individual that matter.
Findings have shown that having large quantities of money does not guarantee happiness. Having vast social networks can be a better source of satisfaction. Strong social networks are likely to develop mutual affection among people compared to what money can do (Berk 78). Earning a lot of money can be significant. Equally essential however is having people who care and whose company one can enjoy. The satisfaction that is brought through bonding has longer lasting effects than what money can do for a person.
There have been cases of people who have a lot of money but lack happiness. When searching for money, most of us forget that we have people who love and care for us. The focus is normally on how to gain more money which in the end makes people to even lose their families. In some instances, rich people have committed suicide after missing people who are ready to bond with them (Burke 85). It is therefore important to realize that even though money is an essential part of our lives, it cannot give us all the satisfaction and happiness that we need.
Aristotle defines happiness as, “the meaning and purpose of life, the whole aim, and end of human existence.” Aristotle expresses displeasure in the way people spend a lot of time searching for material pleasures which cannot bring them happiness. Having a lot of money can be stressful. First, a person does not have peace of mind since he/she has to plan, manage and grow the money. As a result, one is likely to slump into depression whenever the level of cash declines. Numerous surveys conducted in the United States on the life of lottery owners before and after they win the money shows different levels of happiness (Burke 100). Before they earn money, most of them live modest lifestyles. They are said to be in close ties to other people who provide them with the happiness that they may need. However, findings in the survey indicate that there were changes after people win large sums of money in lotteries. Most winners of lottery money leave their jobs despite the happiness that they found in working. Similarly, the research further indicated that their lifestyles also changed after winning the money. A couple of the winners were said to have gone on a shopping spree which eventually diminished al their money leaving them miserable than they were (Berk 115). Kahneman in his research on how happiness related to the levels of income found out that the more people earn, the less happy they are likely to experience. It is an indication that money is not a guarantee of happiness. Happiness has to come from the inner being of a person.
In conclusion, it is essential to note that happiness is a state of mind. Whether a person is poor or rich, happiness comes from deep within oneself. Though the issue of whether money is a source of joy is debated over time, the fact remains that the happiness of a person comes from their inner feelings. Though other people argue that satisfaction and money are inseparable, it is crucial to note that cash offers only a temporal form of happiness. In my view, people should strive to build intimate and mutual relationships with their loved ones before the issue of money comes in. There is no essence of having money without any source of satisfaction. Thus, the notion that wealth is a primary component of happiness should be deconstructed and looked at from a different perspective.
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