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Happiness is Love — and $75,000

“Happiness is actually the result of the fulfillment of two abstract psychological states — emotional well being and life evaluation”

Here are some tidbits from the article Happiness is Love — and $75,000:

  • people with an annual household income of $75,000 are about as happy as anyone gets
  • people with an annual household income of more than $75,000 don’t have commensurately higher levels of emotional wellbeing, even though their life evaluation rating continues to increase even in large expensive cities
  • Moreover, other research suggests that wealthy people don’t take as much pleasure in actual pleasure as do poor people. In one test, social researchers primed some test subjects to feel rich and found that the “wealthy” subjects didn’t enjoy luxury chocolate as much as the control group, the “non-wealthy,” did. 
  • So people who have achieved their goals, who spend a lot of time with friends, and who make a lot of money have the most life satisfaction, while those who earn at least $75,000 a year have the greatest emotional wellbeing. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t stressed.
  • It is worse to be alone, it is worse to be divorced, it is worse to be unemployed, and it is worse to be sick if you’re poor, and you get less benefit from the things that create emotional wellbeing,” says Dr. Kahneman. “There are huge emotional costs to poverty.
  • while warm puppies really can improve emotional wellbeing, your emotional life depends primarily on your relationships with people

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