Why money doesn’t bring you long-term happiness

I’ve noticed that my days are going so fast, I feel like I may just notice at some point that I’ve become old. I guess it’s a sign that I’m truly enjoying my life.

Compared to my ‘chronic depression & anxiety’ days, my life doesn’t really look that different when I look it from the outside. Well, it does, but not as much as I would have imagined.

I really thought back then that living an enjoyable life would be something you see in the movies. Yes, I was that deluded.

I believe that if I’d be doing my daily things with the old mindset that I had, it would certainly become depressed at some point and I’d fall back to my old habits very quickly.

The biggest difference between me and then is the accumulated knowledge about my condition and how to deal with it. Without that, it would be possible to be filthy rich and still be miserable.

Money doesn’t mean anything – freedom and love for what you do does

I have money (or wealth, to be accurate). Money has never made me happy – it’s a great addition to life, but should never be treated as the main goal. Main goals can be something money can get you (indirectly), but money itself? Meaningless.

Money gives you more opportunities to be happy, but with a dysfunctional mindset, it’s impossible to grasp those opportunities. Money, like anything else you have abundance of, will become almost meaningless.

Amazing life (or, happiness) is an extremely subjective experience. Maybe people have been mass-hypnotized by the jet-set life, riches, hot women etc, but those things represent only some glorified image of short-term excitement.

Too bad that such things often have to be experienced first-hand for a longer period of time to realize the reality behind them.

I remember hearing a great analogy from Owen:

saying “money doesn’t make you happy” to a poor person is like saying “water doesn’t make you happy” to a person who’s been without water for a couple of days in the desert.

Of course, once the person gets enough water, he doesn’t appreciate it. That’s how it is.

I’ve been planning to go travel abroad after a 1-2 years, while I get my financial position into good spot.

Though if stock market downs in a big way during these 1-2 years, I’ll probably work longer because it will affect so positively to my future wealth.

That being said, I love wealth. Not because I want to be rich, not because I want luxus, but because:

  • Investing is super interesting
  • Security – I love feeling secure of my financial future
  • Wealth = freedom. Ironically, I’ve liked my job for a while now. The closer I get to financial independence, the more I feel like it’s not really necessary. Of course I never thought that it would make me happy or anything like that. Maybe my state changes as soon as I get couple of bad days in a row at job.

That being said, money doesn’t make you happy. Abundance of money gets boring.

What do you think kept Warren Buffett going all these years? He certainly isn’t greedy, but a humble, amazing old man.

It’s the love for what he does. He’s got all the freedom in the world, but still he decides to go to his office and do what he has done for all his life. He lives frugally and to my knowledge hasn’t sold his shares at Berkshire Hathaway.

It hasn’t been about “just” money for a long time, it just happens to be part of doing business that he likes so much.

I’m off to sleep.


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