Any time I see some story about someone winning a lottery, I look at the amount and I usually think, Yeah, that kind of money would make me happy.
But researchers set out to determine where happiness truly begins when it comes to income. What they came up with was an “income plateau” at which more money has “no measurable effect on day-to-day contentment.”
And the amount is far less than I would have ever guessed!
Before I reveal it, it’s important that I mention that in this study, conducted last fall, they separated two different kinds of happiness: the “day-to-day” kind, indicating emotional well-being; and then the overall satisfaction with one’s place in the world, which we see more in the wealthy.
This study focused on the former, not the latter.
And the result they came up with was a “mere” $75,000.
Up to that point, they say, day-to-day contentment rises. Nothing past that point really makes the needle jump.
I’d have guessed at least a quarter-million. But in case any current or prospective employer is out there reading this, I’d be happy to conduct a little experiment on the relative “day-to-day” happiness of a $75,000 salary any time you’d be willing to dispense it.