Money makes the world go round or so they say. We couldn’t possibly imagine a world without money. Unfortunately, money controls our lives and determines our place in society. Money causes stress, puts pressure on relationships and stops us from reaching our full potential. Life is much easier when you have it but I don’t believe that you can buy happiness. Sure, my life would be much better at the moment if I had more money. I could buy myself a new laptop, some new clothes and possibly a new phone however, no matter how many possessions or gadgets I have, it won’t make me happy. You want to know why? True happiness comes from within.
Buddha once said that ‘Happiness does not depend on what you have or who you are. It solely relies on what you think.’ What he means by that is you could be the richest person on the planet, you could be high up in society and have lots of power but you could still be very unhappy. Happiness is created by you and only you. You have the power to change how you feel about yourself and the world around you. What you think determines how you feel and what you feel will determine who you are. Happy thoughts make a happy person.
I’ve often experienced the difference between momentary happiness and long term happiness. Trust me, there’s a big difference. I could go to the bookstore and buy a book for example. As I pay for it at the till, I feel a warm sensation of happiness; I’ve purchased something that I wanted. Afterwards, I look into my purse and I realise that I couldn’t really afford it. I convince myself that it’s okay, so what? It makes me happy doesn’t it? Well, in that one moment it does. When I get home the book is put on my shelf, with about hundred more books that I need to read and I forget about it for a while. The happiness I felt when I was purchasing the book soon disappears and it is replaced with a feeling of uncertainty, should I have bought that?
Long term happiness however is something that you have to work for. You have to look at your life and make positive changes. If you don’t see your friends enough, pick up the phone. If you want a better relationship with a family member, communicate and make the effort to improve it. What I’m trying to say is. Don’t think that having more money will bring you happiness, it doesn’t but love can. Have you ever laughed so much that your stomach hurts? Have you ever held your partners hand and felt a warm feeling hug you inside? Have you ever woken up with a smile on your face as you think about the day ahead? Have you ever closed your eyes and thought about what you have and feel grateful for it all? If you have felt this kind of happiness then you are truly happy.
Money is essential to live but it doesn’t have to be at the root of your individual happiness. People can always earn more money but when you reach the end of your life, will you smile as you remember all of the material objects you bought? Or will you think of the wonderful memories you shared with those you love? Having too much money can take you away from your true self but not having enough teaches you value and you learn to be grateful for what you have. I don’t wish to have lots of money. I just want enough to live a comfortable life. In the meantime, as I wait for more money, I will focus on my own happiness and the happiness of those around me. Money doesn’t control my life and it definitely shouldn’t control yours either.