5 ways money can buy happiness

We have all heard the fortune cookie wisdom “Money cannot buy happiness” and that is true…mostly. Personally, I believe such words of wisdom relate mainly to the buying of “Stuff”. It’s thrilling to buy a new car, or a big screen TV, or an exotic vacation, but thrilled is not happy. Happy is being content with who you are and where your life is headed.

Does that require money to accomplish? Nope. Can money help you get where you want to be? Oh yeah! So let’s take a moment to ponder the power of your pennies and press on to….

Invest in you.

Take a class in something you have always found interesting. The difference between taking classes you want to take and classes you had to take (*cough* high school *cough*) is night and day. You’ll be amazed how much fun it can be.

Local community colleges offer a wide variety of subjects at reasonable prices. One or two nights a week can lead to a whole new career. Most even offer online classes if necessary but better to get out of the house, make the drive, and maybe make new friends with the same interests as you.

Hobbies? You mean watching football?

Do airplanes fascinate you? Maybe gardening is your thing, or building model trains. Often as we get older and our responsibilities increase, our hobbies are the first things to get set aside for more “important” things. Well, take your tulips back or break out that model muscle car you’ve been meaning to put together!

Hobbies provide an outlet for the stress in our daily lives, giving us time to set aside our worries for a time and re-energize. Set aside a particular area in your home or a specific time to indulge yourself in something active, get off the couch, and do something fun just for you.

Time is money.

Anyone who has children eventually has to decide how much time they can afford to give. You may decide time with your youngsters ranks higher on your priority list than career. If so, take a hard look at your budget, talk with your spouse, and decide what you can live without to make more time with the kids while they’re still kids. They don’t stay young forever.

Invest in others.

Americans give more money to charity than any other nation in the world. That is something to be proud of, but we can do more. Look for a charity that shares your priorities and volunteer. Help build a house with Habitat for Humanity. Be a big brother to an inner city youth. Take part in Special Olympic events. There are no words adequate enough to describe how good it feels to make a difference in another person’s life.

Even if you don’t have time to volunteer but can still make donations, pick a single charity so others aren’t wasting your money mailing you requests for more money. Ask them questions about how they work. Find out what percentage of your donations goes directly to their cause and how much goes to administrative expenses. Don’t just write a check. Get involved.

You can buy love.

Nothing says unconditional love like a pet. An animal companion can bring you joy and help you relax after a hard day at the office. Consider taking home one from a pet adoption agency. I guarantee hundreds of animals in your area are available and in desperate need of a good home.

5 ways money can buy happiness

Just choose a pet responsibly based on the time you have available to give them and they will reward you a hundred tmes over. Dogs are great companions but require more attention. Cats can handle solitude better. If you travel a lot, you might want to stick with goldfish.

These are just a few ideas to get you thinking. Think outside the box. Think about what makes you happy, or makes you a better person. You can’t put a price tag on a life well lived. Now go live yours. Read this awesome article on why small things matter the most.