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Happy Money

December 15th, 2013 at 07:45 am

I'm always on the prowl for new and interesting personal finance books. Most are pretty ho-hum once you've been in the mix for a while. I picked up a copy of Happy Money by Elizabeth Dunn et al.

I actually liked it. It gave me food for thought. It's about the ways (using scientific research) we can spend our money to make us happier.

I know, it sounds hokey, but I'm not doing it justice. They say with a few tweaks, we can actually get more enjoyment out of the money we already spend.

The basic premise is, to be happier,
Buy experiences, rather than stuff. The joy of stuff wears off immediately, whereas the joy of experiences and the memories from them, last.

Make it a treat. I.e. buy fewer lattes, so that when you do get one, it's a treat not just an very day ho hum experience.

Buy time. As in, if you're spending to 'save' time do it in a way that eliminates the most frustrating and unenjoyable tasks of your life, because oftentimes unhappiness springs from a million little frustrations.

Pay Now, consumer later. This one, you'll have to read the book about, but it's cool. It inspired me to go for it and buy tickets to a rock show on my birthday, even though it's three months away. Now, I have something to look forward to( see above!), and I will enjoy it more because I paid up front.

Invest in others, via charity or otherwise. Also true. Seems the more I give, the more aware I am of how lucky we are and how much we have. And, the more likely I am to eschew ridiculous purchases because I am aware that it is frivolous.

So yes, I'd recommend this book. It's a quick read, and really made me think about how we use our resources.

3 Responses to “Happy Money”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    Thanks for the review...it does sound like a good read!

  2. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    Ahh ... so spending money on someone to come in and clean my house once a month would be a good use of money. Smile (if I had the disposable income to do something like that... Big Grin ) (I did this when I was teaching in Dallas and made twice what I do now - usually had them come in a day or so before I had company. Money well spent.)

  3. ThriftoRama Says:

    That certainly might qualify!

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