Sunday, May 5, 2013

To Buy or Not to Buy?

Some of these costs are no-brainers - food, shelter, warmth. The other is a seemingly endless source of doubt and excuses: morning latte, new stainless flatware, long-dreamed of a trip to Thailand. This is a cost that can leave us (me) anxiety and conflict.

Despite the old saying goes, the research suggests that money can buy happiness, so as to understand how to make the most of scarce dollars in discretionary effort worth making, say experts in the burgeoning field of positive psychology. "If Money Does not Make You Happy, Then You Probably Do not spend it Right" is the title of an article co-created by Harvard professor Daniel T. Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness sellers nationwide. Among the findings reported:

Purchases made with the main objective to get the experience of life to take action in order to get a good thing or matter.

Expenditures to improve our relationships with others, such as buying a gift for a friend or take them out to dinner, get happiness outsized return.

Small, the pleasure is often a better bet than fewer big-ticket splurges.

However, these rules only take you so far. While research findings speak to the customs statistics, they do not always talk to you. That is why the writer Laura Vanderkam advice carefully tracking what really makes you happy, because he himself has taken to doing. "Today, I bought a little pleasure, such as lattes and flowers, and spend even more money and gather with friends. I spend more on something if I could identify a particular owner or creative types who can benefit from my purchase, "he writes in the new book All the Money in the World: What is the Happiest People Know About Getting and spending.

[Related: The Secret to Living Well on Less]

A few years ago, personal finance professor David Bach, author of The Automatic Millionaire and other bestsellers, the sound made by coining the term factor (now-trademark) Latte to describe what he viewed as a typically American tendency to waste almost $ 1 million copies and other short courses for life. But along with the fiscal questionable assumption - return 10 percent certainty, anyone? - This attitude is not considered significant and sustained native small pleasures of everyday life. "[A] cross different domains, happiness is more strongly related to the frequency rather than the intensity of positive human affective experience," Harvard Gilbert and his co-authors Forrester.

That said, for all the values ​​identified from small everyday pleasures, we tend to consider the occasional big-ticket items. In this case, I find it useful to use this fantastic query adapted from blogger Havi Brooks: "The purchase is likely to make life better for the Future Bit Me?" For that reason I do not quite understand, he tends to leave me more clearly. I also try to remind myself that, while I make the best decision, I can not guarantee how I choose to play. As with all investments, portfolio joy I need a certain level of risk. My tolerance of risk assessment should be part of the equation.

[Related: Welcome to Plan B Nation]

Based on reflection and calculation, finally I began a long-awaited planning Thailand. (I added taking inspiration from the studies cited by Vanderkam hope that the holidays increase the level of happiness for eight weeks.) Ditto to get a new set of cutlery: Yes, the rate is one thing, but on the other hand, it will be part of everyday experience, and I'm pretty sure that in this way will give regular lifts my spirit - as pot dish that I bought years ago are still doing food.

Currently, my favorite coffee shop is a place in my budget. Though of course the cost of a latte, he buys happiness is priceless.