Here’s a conversation I can pretty much guarantee we’ve all experienced. You say, “Man, if I had a million dollars thing would be so much better.” Then your friend or loved one says, “Money can’t buy you happiness.” How many times have you heard someone say this? If you’re like me, you’ve heard this too many times. My comeback use to be, “Money may not buy you happiness, but you can pick your misery.” And then I would chuckle. This is a pretty good comeback, but it’s not accurate either. So what is accurate about money and happiness? What can money do?
1. Give You Options
When you have money, you have more options. Let’s say you and your spouse just had a huge fight and you know if you stay home, things are only going to get worse. You may not want to air your dirty laundry to anyone, so staying with a friend is out of the question. You can’t afford to spend money on a hotel room for the night. You simply don’t have the money to leave.
Well, with money, you have options. You could easily get a hotel room for the night and let things blow over. It’s funny the difference a night can make and the difference money can make. I wonder how many marriages, or even lives for that matter, have been saved because a spouse had the money to stay at a hotel.
2. Relieve Stress
Let’s say you need to buy a new car. You know you have a certain budget you have to stay under so you try to to do your best to get the most reliable car you can while keeping your payments low. You decide to buy a used car so that you can hopefully pay it off and not have a payment for a few years. You find the perfect one and the salesman quotes you a price of $305 a month. Just above the cusp of where you wanted to be, but you say fine. You then go back to do the finance and paperwork, the whole time thinking, “I can do $305 a month. This worked out.”
But then the finance guy tells you about the warranty and strongly suggest why it’s worth getting. And his case is compelling. Wanting to protect your investment, you agree. The payment now shoots up to $385.00 a month. You’re feeling the stress. You’re even a bit upset, but you’re this far in now. “It is what it is,” you think.
Lastly he says that he can’t get the numbers to work out, and needs you to put $1500 down so he can make this go through. Now, you’re spent, stressed, and angry. Could money relieve a little stress here???
3. Bring You Joy
Yes, money can bring you joy. You know how? By giving it away. No, I’m not crazy. Jim Rohn always said to give away what you can. Because, and I quote, “Giving starts the receiving process.” Money wants to move, not sit still. It needs to circulate. You need to put it out in the world to help others. Seeing the joy your money can bring to others and how it can help others will do something for you soul that just holding on to the money couldn’t do.
Now, I’m not saying to just give all your money away. But give what you can and as often as you can. There’s no greater joy than the joy received from doing something good for someone and seeing the positive impact money used the right way can bring. Figure out how much money you can afford to give to charity each month and make donating that money a priority every month.
I see what people mean when they say that money can’t buy happiness. And it’s true that you’re not going to be happy just because you have money. But having money and using it in the right way can give you options, relieve stress, and bring you joy. And the combination of those three things can result in a much happier life. So, the next time someone says, “Money can’t buy happiness,” give them examples of how you’ve used your money to improve your lives and others. Money doesn’t guarantee happiness, but it surely gives you the resources to give it a good go!!!