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Illustration of money with a smiley face on it
Illustration of money with a smiley face on it
Illustration of money with a smiley face on it

Published November 26, 2019.

You often hear that money doesn't buy happiness.

Yet, many people believe they'd be happier if they just had more money. Experts say the answer is more complicated.

Text transcript of infographic.

Without adequate food, clothing, and shelter, people struggle with happiness. Earning more money can increase happiness, but only to about $75,000 per year, studies have repeatedly shown. If you're still unhappy after that, money may not be the answer.

Relationships and connections are where we find happiness, so focus on those areas of your life: helping others, experiences, and time-saving services.

Retail therapy may feel good in the short-term, but often leads to impulse purchases that can add financial stress. Shopping can help sadness and powerlessness, but doesn't help anger and guilt.

Flip the script. Focus on happiness over money and you might get both. Happiness increases the likelihood of job offers and positive evaluation by supervisors.

Don't fall for the comparison trap. There's always someone with more. Do compare your past self v. your present self. Don't compare yourself to your friends, neighbors, or celebrities.

Sources: Psychology Today, Forbes, and Entrepreneur magazines.

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