Can Money Buy Happiness?

Whether money can or cannot buy happiness is an ongoing debate, with either side presenting arguments to support its claim. Happiness is a mental state denoting positive and pleasant emotions, comprising joy, contentment, satisfaction, and fulfillment. After understanding happiness, it is right to argue that money can buy happiness by solving many problems that make people unhappy.

Many people are unhappy because they struggle to pay rent, service mortgages, pay school fees, and buy food or clothing. Billions worldwide, both in developed and developing nations, face financial challenges, and their only dream is overcoming money problems. In extreme cases, people commit suicide or abandon families because of financial challenges. Money allows such individuals to pay mortgages, school fees, utilities, and buy food or clothing, making them satisfied and contented with life.

Courtesy / Towfiqu barbhuiya

The inability to pursue one’s hobbies makes people unhappy. For example, a person who enjoys traveling and exploring new places is unhappy working 9-5 through the years. Such jobs enslave people in one place they dislike, denying them an opportunity to be happy. Money provides individuals with the freedom to resign from a 9-5 job and pursue hobbies or things that make them happy. Despite a toxic and unconducive working environment, people work daily to earn a livelihood and acquire financial security in the future. An unconducive work environment is detrimental to a person’s mental health. Money empowers employees to leave a toxic workplace and focus on a profession that makes them happy and satisfied.

Money buys happiness by allowing people to fulfill interests, dreams, and aspirations. For example, regular vacations, properties, and luxurious houses make millions of people happy. However, affording such items requires money, meaning those whose happiness relies on material wealth are unhappy until they have enough cash to live the lifestyle they visualize. Attending a good college to pursue a career that makes one happy also relies on money availability. For example, a person whose passion is flying cannot realize the dream unless they can pay for an aviation school. Money availability allows people to pursue their dreams and aspirations at an early age and live a fulfilling life.

Other people are happy eating good food and drinking fine wine at luxurious restaurants. Money allows such individuals to literally buy their happiness (foods and drinks).

Money buys happiness by mitigating mental-health problems associated with lack of money. Financial issues cause substance abuse and mental health problems including, stress, depression, and anxiety. For example, debts and subsequent financial worries make borrowers anxious and depressed. The inability to offset debts has pushed some into committing suicide. Money availability fosters happiness, satisfaction, and fulfillment the same way lack of money causes depression and anxiety.

Another item that makes people lack satisfaction and fulfillment in life is poor health. Although money does not buy good health, it allows individuals to access the best care and prevent illnesses or treat ailments before they get severe. Furthermore, a sick relative, including a parent, spouse, or child, undermines a person’s mental wellbeing, especially when they do not have the finances to pay high healthcare costs. Money calms such individuals by assuring them that their loved ones will get the best treatment available and possibly root out the disease. To conclude, money does not entirely buy happiness, but it does solve more than half the problems that make people unhappy.

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