Can Money Buy Us Happiness?

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What's the correlation between possessing money and being happy? Must we have money before we can be happy? If so, how much is sufficient?

Here's a wonderful YouTube clip that explores the dicey relationships we have with money and happiness. Do watch it!

Source credit: AsapScience

Once our basic physical needs - for food, water and shelter - are comfortably met, having more money doesn't correlate with happiness. These expenses vary accordingly to the living standards of different societies. In North America, it is estimated that the threshold for this amount of money is 75,000 USD per annum. This works out to be a monthly salary of 6,250 USD (which is still a rather hefty amount).

Beyond this threshold, however, more money doesn't bring more joy.

This reminds me of Maslow's hierarchy of needs. In Maslow's pyramid, the largest, most fundamental levels of needs are at the bottom with the need for self-actualisation at the apex.

Source credit: Yahoo! Images
As Maslow explained, we are more than the sum of our physical needs. We need more than just financial resources to feel fulfilled. We need people to cherish us and people whom we can cherish. We need to find our raison d'etre, our purposes for existence, callings that can empower us.

It struck me that, whatever the case, we need to have a certain pool of financial resources that'd free us from worries about the availability of food, shelter and water.

Hence, the conclusion of this question is yes, money can buy us happiness but only to a certain extent.

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