How to Buy Happiness 如何买到幸福
Arthur Brooks 阿瑟·布鲁克斯
In 2010， two Nobel laureates in economics published a paper that created a tidal wave of interest both inside and outside academia. With careful data analysis， the researchers showed that people believe the quality of their lives will increase as they earn more， and their feelings do improve with additional money at low income levels. But the well-being they experience flattens out at around $75，000 in annual income （about $92，000 in today's dollars）.
At low levels， money improves well-being. Once you earn a solid living， however，
a billionaire is not likely to be any happier than you are. Yet for the most part， this truth remains hard for people to grasp. Americans work and earn and act as if becoming richer will automatically raise our happiness， no matter how rich we might get. When it comes to money and happiness，there is a glitch in our psychological code.
Understanding this can help us build happier lives. Even further， it uncovers strategies for using income at all levels to raise well-being. Just because most people generally don't get happier as they get richer beyond a certain point doesn't mean that they can't. In fact， no matter where we sit on the income scale， with a little knowledge and practice any of us can use money to bring more happiness.
Specifically， spending money to have experiences， buying time， and giving money away to help others all reliably raise happiness.
The key factor connecting all those approaches is other people. If you buy an experience， whether it be a vacation or just a dinner out， you can raise your happiness if you share it with someone you love. Friends and family are two key ingredients in well-being， and fun experiences with these people give us sweet memories we can enjoy for the rest of our lives.
Likewise， if you pay someone to do something time-consuming that you don't like to do，and don't waste the time you gain on unpleasant things like doom-scrolling on social media， you can get a happiness boost by spending those extra hours with others.
And if you use your money to charitably support a person or a worthy cause， your brain will respond with boosts in dopamine， serotonin， and oxytocin， elevating your mood. Charitable giving is also linked to higher earnings， which you can then spend on relationships， experiences， and charity.
Left to our urges and natural desires， we can get stuck in a cycle of dissatisfaction， in which we work， earn， buy， and hope to finally get happier. But we don't have to play that futile game. Anyone who acquires money can use it to buy some happiness， and do a little self-improvement in the process. If we don't have much， we can spend any extra cash on removing some of the stressors in our daily lives. When we have enough to meet our basic needs， we can fight our materialistic impulses and spend time enjoying the people around us. And if we are lucky enough to have extra income， we can make it into a source of happiness， by transforming it into a means to share， and to love others better.