It’s a nice thought, isn’t it? At some point in your life, someone’s probably told you that “one can’t buy happiness,” likely to encourage you to be content with what you have. Research has already shown that isn’t true, but a new study suggests that you might even be infinitely happier with money.
“It’s a compelling possibility, the idea that money stops mattering above that point, at least for how people actually feel moment to moment,” Matthew Killingsworth, a senior fellow at Penn’s Wharton School and author of the study, told Medical Press. “But when I looked across a wide range of income levels, I found that all forms of well-being continued to rise with income. I don’t see any sort of kink in the curve, an inflection point where money stops mattering. Instead, it keeps increasing.”
The study focused on experienced well-being, which is how you feel at particular moments in life, rather than evaluative well-being, which is how you feel after further reflection. Past studies have concluded that while a higher income generally improves your evaluation of your life, your emotional well-being stops improving after an income of $75,000. But this research was based on how people remembered feeling throughout the day, rather than how they felt in the moment.
With the help of smartphones, Killingsworth was able to collect real time reports from 33,391 employed adults in the United States and found that both measures of well-being did not diverge, potentially increasing infinitely with income.
Read more at The Hill.