Money Can Buy Happiness: Is It True?

Money is often associated with a happier life, but is it really so? Many people will agree that happiness is associated not with money but with other significant things in life, like the freedom to make deliberate decisions, social recognition, and having strong and empowering bonds with a family and community. This paper aims to argue that money cannot buy happiness, presenting supportive and opposing views.

Money cannot buy happiness since happiness encompasses not only the physical world but also the spiritual one. Steve Siebold (2015), author of many books on how money affects people’s lives, describes how higher incomes make people happier by empowering them. The author says that more money can enrich persons’ intimate and professional relationships, and help them find more friends. This perspective is partly right, but one should remember that money is only a tool, and use it wisely, for fulfilling genuine desires and values.

However, it is entirely wrong to study the connection between money and happiness as a direct relationship. For example, Carmen Ang (2021) presents the results of a study examining the relationship between reported levels of experienced well-being and money. According to the study results, even after crossing the mark $ 75,000 a year, the participants’ level of happiness continued to increase. Strangely, it did not occur to scientists that this does not prove a direct relationship between happiness and having money.

From a broader perspective, social values can be more important than money. Wdowiak (2021) rightly notes that in low-income countries in monetized societies, people with lower incomes felt less happy than people with similar incomes in minimally monetized societies. The same could be said about people with low incomes in monetized societies with generally high society well-being compared to other nations (Wdowiak, 2021). These results could mean that only personal income can make people happier since it allows them to control their lives. Control brings happiness as it is an essential security element, and security is a basic human need. Presumably, it is easier for a person to achieve happiness in low-income countries since less money is required to feel in control of life. If so, globalization and rising levels of well-being may paradoxically make more people around the world unhappy.

Thus, it was argued why money could not buy happiness, and different views were presented. Happiness is a much more complex, broad, and inclusive concept than money, which is only a tool. Happiness is more likely to depend on the owner of the money, how he or she makes money and spends it, and how well that money allows them to control their lives and implement their values.


Ang, C. (2021). “Money can buy happiness after all.” Deep Politics. Web.

Siebold, S. (2015). “Interviewing over 1,200 rich people has taught me exactly how money affects the most important things in our lives.” Insider. Web.

Wdowiak, M. (2021). “Fact or fiction: Does money really buy happiness?” The McGill Tribune. Web.

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