Monday, November 10, 2014

How Much Money Does It Take To Buy Happiness?

Today's Wall Street Journal discusses how much money it takes for one to be happy. There's the usual platitudes about how money can't really buy happiness. However, a couple of charts that accompany the article belies the writer's point. One chart, shown above, correlates happiness levels with income. Not surprisingly the more money you make the happier you are. What's interesting is that at an income of greater than $500,000 per year, 100% of people are very happy with their lives. A second chart in the article that measures life satisfaction with income also shows that at greater than half a million dollars per year, 100% of the survey respondents were very satisfied.

So there you have it. All you need to be absolutely positively sure you'll be happy is to make $500,000 per year. That means all those neurosurgeons, interventional cardiologists, and spine surgeons should be golden. But since we anesthesiologists can see that many of them are not happy, that throws this whole study into the appropriate place where it belongs, in the round outbox sitting under my desk.

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