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Money CAN Buy Happiness
It all about needs and wants
I struggle to explain it when I use the word happiness. What does it mean to you? It’s hard to define because, like the word success, happiness means something different to everyone.
“I am happy!”
How do you know? Is it because you smile a lot of the time, or because you feel fulfilled with your life? Do you have a partner? A good job? Do you have faith in a god? Are you following your passions in life, or are you satisfied with your place in society’s pecking order?
How do you know you are happy?
For me, the standard definition of happiness is that your needs as a human being are met. You have plenty of healthy food to eat and water to drink. You have a roof over your head and clothes to wear.
Maybe, one or more of your wants are being met as well. Perhaps you have the latest iPhone, or you spent a year traveling the globe before the pandemic and plan to do it again when it’s safe to travel.
You would most likely feel happiness if your needs and wants were being fulfilled.
“The reason it’s important to satisfy our needs is because we feel emotional pain when they’re not met. You may be in pain and not know why or which needs are not being fulfilled. When our needs are met, we feel happy, grateful, safe, loved, playful, alert, and calm. When they’re not, we’re sad, fearful, angry, tired, and lonely.” — PsychCentral.com
The Thing About Money
People have strong opinions about money. Some say it’s the root of all evil. Some think capitalism is the best thing since sliced bread.
I don’t want to upset you by sharing my feelings about capitalism and money, but I will anyway. Let’s just say that capitalism is the cause of many of our most severe issues in society and the reason why humans feel the need to destroy the earth and ruin the climate.
Sadly, our lives are a constant race to see who can get enough little pieces of paper with dollar signs. One percent of the earth’s population has more little papers than they will ever need in a billion lifetimes, while most of us suffer or even starve.
It’s unequal, unfair, and barbaric, and humans should not have to spend every waking hour in search of money.
But that is how it is right now, and I don’t see it changing anytime soon, as long as the people with the money are the ones calling the shots. The few with the cash set policy for the rest of us. They own the government, military, and police so they can enforce their unfair laws and never have to be accountable for their actions.
But it is how it is.
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What sucks is that most needs and wants we have as humans can be easily bought if you have enough money.
Don’t ever let anyone tell you that money can’t buy happiness.
Think of your needs and see if you can get them with money. Food, water, shelter, and clothing. Yes! What about sex? Love?
Oh, money can’t buy love? Imagine you are wealthy, successful, have a nice body, and benefit from the best plastic surgery money can buy. Compared to me with no money, no car, poor clothing, bad teeth, and the inability to afford and the time to use a gym membership.
Which of us do you think has a better chance of meeting someone who we want to marry? Be honest!
So, if you go by the definition of happiness that we discussed earlier and believe that happiness exists if we meet our needs and wants, you know that it is a lie when someone says that money can’t buy happiness, love, or fulfillment.
The fact that money can make us happy is terrible because most of us will never have enough to satisfy all our needs in this day and age because the 1% is hoarding it all and will never, ever share.
We all would be a hell of a lot happier if we had plenty of food, shelter, water, clothing, love, and sex. Imagine how much bliss we would feel if our wants were being met as well.
Do you mean I can go out to eat once a week in my favorite restaurants with my friends and still be able to pay my rent? Do you mean I don’t have to borrow money at high-interest rates to purchase the tools I need to have a job or career? I don’t have to go into debt for the rest of my life to go to college and have a future?
Sign me up!
What Money Can’t Buy
Money can buy love and happiness, but there are still certain other things that would make us happy and don’t cost a thing.
What about the need for attention? You can pay someone to follow you around, but that is fake. It is necessary to get the attention that you crave from friends and family.
Creativity and stimulation fulfill us and you can realize those wants without spending a dime. Sit down and write, draw a picture, and sing a song. It’s guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
We will feel more satisfied and happier with our lives when we think we have control. Money is something we have minimal control over, so look to cultivate the areas of your life when you have more of a measure of control, like health and fitness.
Yes, we will always need resources to fulfill our most essential needs and wants, but it will help us look for areas of our life that bring a smile to our faces without spending anything but a little time and effort.
You may think I am jaded and angry because so much of what makes us happy is controlled by how much money we have, but I am a realist. I know it won’t be like this forever. And even if I don’t find fulfillment in my life because we as a society can’t break the hold of money and capitalism, I am satisfied knowing I did my part to break the chains of future generations.
For now, will I keep trying to get more happiness with money? Yes, I am like every single one of you. I will keep working to earn more money and find work that also fulfills my need for creativity and stimulation.
It sucks that money can buy happiness, no doubt about it, but I can’t talk about it anymore because I have to get back to work.
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