The Latest Science On Whether Money Can Buy Happiness

A recent symposium of psychology researchers, called Happy Money 2.0: New Insights Into the Relationship Between Money and Well-Being, has again attempted to uncover whether having one really yields the other. The choice of the term “well-being” is important, because it’s a bit more exacting than the big, broad idea of “happiness.” Well-being in psych parlance can either be “psychological well-being”—which is measured using scales, in the same way that depression can be measured in the other direction. Or it can be “subjective well-being” (sometimes called hedonic well-being), which is the sense of satisfaction we feel with our lives moment-to-moment. When it comes to measuring happiness, both definitions of well-being are important; one can be tracked by the numbers, the other discloses our gut.

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