Can Money Truly Buy Happiness?

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Chapter 11 focuses on the emotions humans experience and the motivational forces that drive human behavior. I was most interested about the myths and realities of the things that make people happy. As humans, it is in our nature to seek things that will provide us happiness. It has been widely known that happiness is associated with living longer. Thus, finding out what makes us happy is a curious topic for many.


One of the common misconceptions about finding happiness is that "money makes us happy." Research suggests that money and material items don't buy happiness once we're financially comfortable. Once we're financially stable, additional money doesn't make us much happier. Yet, most unhappy people continue to believe that they would be happier if only they had more money. However, these people tend to forget that higher salaries typically mean longer working hours and less free time, which leads to less happiness. In fact, in the past 60 years, the U.S. gross national product has increased dramatically; yet, Americans' average level of life satisfaction has stayed constant over that time span. For a further explanation of these results, visit this website.

On the other hand, some of the common realities that do make us happy include: marriage, friendships, college, religion, exercise, and giving. Of course, these items don't guarantee happiness but they're typically associated with it.

I do agree that happiness cannot be bought. Happiness arises from the simple act of enjoying what we do. As said in the textbook: "Happiness lies in the pursuit of the prize, not the prize itself (426)."

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I agree with the idea that money cannot buy happiness, but the happiness in this context talks about the ultimate or true happiness. I think that money is essential for happiness. maybe not the ultimate ones, but at least money can make people somewhat happy although it might be a short-term happiness.

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This page contains a single entry by chan0984 published on January 26, 2012 12:39 AM.

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