Does Winning the Lottery Bring Happiness? - Does Money Bring Happiness?
The total lack of money in a capitalist society brings unhappiness and a constant struggle for survival: you need money to buy basic necessities. But after that there isn’t so much money can do.
Happiness is subjective and genetic. There are happy people by nature and there are sad people.
Shortly after winning the lottery, we will enter a temporary euphoria and happiness that can last for weeks or months, in that time we will buy new appliances, the new Flat Screen TV, a two floor apartment, the new BMW, the most advanced electronic devices in the world. But after a few months we will quickly adjust to the possession of all that. The flat screen TV, no matter how much quality it may have, is nothing but a TV where we see information like we did before, the BMW is only good for transportation, we'll quickly get used to the compliments that people give us when they see us with it on the street, the apartment, no matter how beautiful it is, is just an object, a house.
Humans have a happiness state of their own and will always return to this state, no matter if we get the car of our dreams, if we spend time with it every day we'll get used to it and all the novelty will be lost.
All this is caused by a phenomenon that psychologists call hedonic adaptation, where the word hedonic refers to pleasure. This phenomenon is the tendency that humans have of quickly return to a stable state of happiness despite major changes in their lives, whether negative or positive.
Therefore for someone who just won the lottery remain happy, he would have to be buying a BMW every month, or a new home, or yachts, or making trips, which makes most of them declare bankruptcy very quickly.
But as if that were not enough, the lottery winner still suffers other problems. People will not acknowledge that he won the money fairly. Thieves will therefore feel justified in wanting to rob him what will make him suffer many theft attempts, his family will demand that he shares the money with them, and everything that people made freely for him now they will want to do it for a price, that person's life will be at risk. And still there's the case of people who will not care for his wealth and that will just want him out of their lives, they will never want friendship or conversation with him, because they will feel inferior to him.
Quickly this victory, this winning lottery ticket, becomes an incredible nightmare.
But Then How Is Happiness Possible?
Happiness is with us, within us. It's the way we look at life, the way we face people and events. Objects won’t make us happy, objects are useful and facilitate our lives but they will never guarantee our happiness. We can lose our house today with everything in it and still be able to live a life full of happiness.
Avoid going after objects, go after experiences. A group of psychologists did a study and came to the conclusion that experiences provide longer lasting happiness in relation to objects. Experiences such as live concerts, trips, fancy restaurants, Cinemas, Theatres, etc., provide lasting pleasure, because we can relive them in our memory.
Live and do useful things that match your personality, nothing is better than doing what we love to do, nothing is better than organizing our entire lives around our passion, whatever it may be. We must live for ourselves and not for others. Life is just one. Work and make enough money to survive and have a decent life, the rest is of little value, merely whims.
In short: If you want to be happy, make enough money to survive and have a decent life, be at peace with yourself, because you have to live with yourself 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. We are the greatest source of our own happiness, and know that objects, no matter what objects, no matter how much you wish them, will not bring any absolute happiness, they are just things you are going to get used to. Experiences like travels and night outs are very important because they are durable and cultivate your spirit making you smarter.
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Sources: Wikipedia, hedonic Adaptation
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