August 22, 2009
We hear again and again that money can't make you happy. But maybe it can after all.
“Just because money doesn’t buy happiness doesn’t mean money cannot buy happiness,” says Elizabeth Dunn, a social psychologist and assistant professor at the University of British Columbia, in tomorrow's Boston Globe.
According to Dunn and her fellow researchers, it all depends on how you spend it. If you spend money "prosocially"—that is, if you spend it on others—you're likelier to add to your purchase a lasting sense of well-being. And spending on "experiences"—on a vacation or taking a friend to dinner—instead of material goods is likelier to put a spring in your step (this is called "conceptual buying").
One caveat: Everything in good measure; giving all your money away is not recommended by the research team.
Read the Globe article here.