Many people are familiar with the saying that “Money can’t buy you happiness,” but it’s true that few individuals may actually agree with it. After all, when they consider the number of problems that cause them trouble in life and threaten their happiness, they often feel that these problems would be easily resolved if they only had more money. The fact is that these two conditions may very well be linked to one another–only the other way around.
Various studies into the relationship between happiness and prosperity have indicated that happy people do tend to earn more money. However, these study results are very clear about which comes first–happiness, and then the money. The obvious question then becomes: Why? There are actually many reasons. First of all, happy people are more optimistic about their life and their actions, and are therefore usually more willing to accept challenges and take risks at work. This can be very appealing to employers, who view such individuals as leaders and highly deserving of advancements in rank and pay. Additionally, happy people are routinely healthier than their less-fortunate counterparts, which means that they are able to spend more time working and less time on sick leave. In fact, according to research published in Illinois Wesleyan University’s “The Park Place Economist,” happy people tend to have fifteen fewer sick days each year than unhappy people. While this may not seem incredibly significant, the fact remains that this too affects the individual’s pay. Furthermore, unhappy individuals who suffer from general poor health tend to also be less productive and efficient than their happy counterparts. Of course, an individual who is more productive is more likely to bring in a greater income than an individual who is less productive.
Another reason that happy people tend to earn more money is that they get better performance reviews from their employers, which can result in rank advancements and pay increases. Better performance reviews can occur because happiness is contagious, which means that the individual’s coworkers and customers tend to be happier, which reflects well on him. Happy people are also more likely to come up with solutions to problems, rather than simply complaining about these problems and creating more work for their superiors and coworkers. They are confident and interested in ways to increase productivity and improve results, which of course leads to more benefits and raises.
It is also important to note that a happy individual is often interested in what else they can learn and do in order to improve their life. These improvements can be of great benefit to the individual’s employer, as they tend to apply their new skills and abilities to their work. In effect, their happiness, drive, initiative, confidence and overall interest in life and others around them can make a happy individual pleasant to be around and work with, which is a valuable commodity that many employers are very willing to pay for.