H is for How Money Influences Our Lives

Multi ethnic friends tourists with map in old city

Spending wisely is not a bad practice, and many of us need to watch our spending, but if our primary focus is on getting the best deal for the lowest price, what message is this sending our mind, body, and soul?

Scientist have been studying the relationship between money and happiness for decades, and most find the correlation between income and happiness is positive – but minimal. A study by the Journal of Consumer Psychology states “the relationship between money and happiness is surprisingly weak, which may stem in part from the way people spend it.” The study goes on to explore “wise spending” which suggest particular types of purchases may affect our well-being and happiness more than others. When our spending helps bring us closer to other people, we tend to have positive benefits.

If you would like to use your future purchasing power to increase your levels of happiness here are a few suggestions:

  • Spend money on life experiences and fewer material goods
  • Spend money on experiences you can share with others
  • Give to others
  • Avoid the buy now – pay later mentality and instead embrace delayed gratification.
  • Avoid comparison shopping – with so many choices and features to choose from it makes our decision process more stressful and confusing, which may lead to “after purchase regret”.

The next time you start to make a purchase remember the largest gains for happiness include opportunities to connect with others, giving to others, and crafting a web of precious memories through the experiences you shared with others. Let’s be mindful of our purchases and incorporate a healthy financial practice of buying while keeping our happiness in mind.

Answers from A to Z

About Ann Zuraw

Ann Zuraw, the voice behind "Chicks, Chat and Change", is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®), and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA™).If you have comments on this post contact Ann Zuraw

, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,