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Can Money Buy Happiness?

Have you ever thought, “Today is going to be a great day!” and then logged in to social media to see your neighbor on vacation in Hawaii, or the new and immaculate house they just bought? Your thoughts likely shift from, “Today is going to be a great day!” to, “I wish I had more money.”

But therein lies the rub. If you’ve decided that today is going to be a great day, then is making more money really going to make it greater?

I am thankful to say that I have lived a pretty full life, and plan on continuing to do so. I have an amazing, talented and beautiful wife whom I have been married to for 30 years. I have two beautiful daughters in their 20s. We’ve lived in the same home for the past 24 years (the same one in which my wife and plan to retire in), and every year at this time we have a flock of wild turkeys going through their mating rituals in our back yard. It’s what you might a call a living display of awe and beauty.

People say money doesn't buy happiness. Except, according to a new study from Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School, it sort of does — up to about $75,000 a year. The lower a person's annual income falls below that benchmark, the unhappier he or she feels. But no matter how much more than $75,000 people make, they don't report any greater degree of happiness.

Whether or not I make more or less than $75,000 per year, the combined effort between my wife and I has led to a fulfilling life. I will continue to pursue my entrepreneur efforts to make a better business and hopefully create additional dollars in the process.

But I should not and will not let it define my happiness.

The Bible says, “Where your treasure is there will be your heart.” I was speaking recently to a longtime friend of both my dad and I who had not heard of my dad’s recent passing. He told my that my dad and myself were on the top of his “good boy list” and continued to tell me what a wonderful man my dad was. I whole heartily concur. I think that’s how I’d like to be, and to be remembered, in this life.

$75,000 might be able to buy happiness up to a certain point. But It is my belief that integrity and similar characteristics can acquire you far more riches of the heart.

What do you choose to lay in your treasure box?

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