November 25, 2011

Page 168

..."Can money help buy happiness?" The answer: yes, used wisely, it can. Whether rich or poor, people make choices about how they spend money, and those choices can boost happiness or undermine it. It's a mistake to assume that money will affect everyone the same way. No statistical average could say how a particular individual would be affected by money--depending on that individual's circumstances and temperament.
Money doesn't buy happiness the way good health doesn't buy happiness.

When money or health is a problem, you think of little else; when it's not a problem, you don't think much about it. Both money and health contribute to happiness mostly in the negative; the lack of them brings much more unhappiness than possessing them brings happiness.

Being healthy doesn't guarantee happiness. Lots of healthy people are very unhappy.  Many of them squander their health or take it for granted.... But the fact that good health doesn't guarantee happiness doesn't mean that good health doesn't matter to happiness. Similarly, money. Used wisely, each can contribute greatly to happiness. 

The First Splendid Truth holds that to think about happiness, we should think about feeling good, feeling bad, and feeling right, in an atmosphere of growth. Money is most important for happiness in the "feeling bad" category. People's biggest worries include financial anxiety, health concerns, job insecurity, and having to do tiring and boring chores. Spent correctly, money can go a long way to solving these problems. 

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

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