Column: Cash would not purchase happiness

“Money doesn’t buy happiness.”

The age-old saying always seems like a controversial saying and you may or may not agree with it depending on your financial situation.

It is undeniable that when you are rich you can participate in more opportunities and buy more things. At the same time, while we all strive for material prosperity, we must remember that money is not everything.

College students can resonate with this message, especially since we are constantly looking for new internships or jobs with good earning potential. It can be easy to get lost in the search for good careers or high salaries – but it shouldn’t be one or the other.

For some it may be material wealth, and there is nothing wrong with that. For many of us, however, I would bet that we would say that our family, friends, romantic relationships, helping others, or admiration are the things that make us happy.

Money can’t buy your partner’s real love or your friends’ friendship. Nor can it buy the good feelings associated with physically helping and serving those in need and seeing the smiles your actions bring to the less fortunate.

Here are some reminders that money is not correlated with happiness.

Happiness comes from doing the things we love, not what we buy.

Happiness is a state of mind, not a physical object. You might have material need but still be content with your life through the relationships you have or the things you do. While it is true that wealth can make life easier and give you access to more objects and activities than you otherwise would have, money cannot buy you happy relationships with friends or family.

In AMC’s Breaking Bad, for example, the main character Walter White wins everything – money, power and respect – but he also loses everything. His family hated and denied him, his partner betrayed him, and all the money in the world couldn’t cure his cancer. As college students, with money we can get dinner with friends on Franklin Street or tickets to games, but it cannot ensure happy relationships with the people we love most.

At the end of the day, the relationships we have with others and with ourselves become more important.

Another common saying is, “It doesn’t matter where you are, but who you are with”.

Although this is more likely to be associated with romantic relationships, in this case it is still true because even if you can’t afford to go on expensive vacations or buy fancy things, you can still be happy by being with Hang out with your friends in your hometown or nearby to spend quality time with your family. Likewise, money cannot guarantee that you will be satisfied with your life.

Stephen Goldbart, co-founder of the Money, Meaning & Choices Institute, explains that suddenly getting rich can be a painful psychological experience for some people, and that it is easy to find yourself in and out of an identity crisis at the same time Dealing with loneliness and frustration.

Just as money is temporary, the happiness it brings is also temporary.

While it may be nice to be able to buy whatever you want at any time, even the best cars and clothes wear out over time. Our material wealth will be useless if we all die at some point, but the memories and experiences you have with your family and friends will last a lifetime.

For example, if you look back on your early teen years, you will likely remember your first date, the times you had trouble with your friends at school, or other things you did with your friends and family , and not your first paycheck.

It will never be “enough”.

Even if people become more wealthy, many will always want more. A study by Michael Norton, a professor at Harvard Business School, suggests that even when we acquire an obscene amount of wealth, the instinct to compare ourselves with others doesn’t stop and the rhetorical question, “Am I?” better? “than before?” only drives people’s desire – including the rich – to want more. Therefore, it can turn into a vicious cycle in which you are always obsessed with getting wealthier, which means that you will never be really satisfied or happy with what you have.

Although a lot of money can solve many of your problems and offers many opportunities and experiences, I want to remind people – especially students – that their pursuit of happiness is not the same as their pursuit of wealth.

@ raymondpang17

Sign up for our email newsletter to get the day’s news and headlines in your inbox every morning.