Notable Survey: Salary vs. Happiness

We were recently caught in a very intriguing conversation about salary and the age-old notion of money buying happiness. As expected, opinions were fierce and varying and the topic almost escalated into a heated war of words on the pros and cons of various economic systems. Communism and capitalism aside, it got us thinking: What annual salary would make us happy? And how do we measure this happiness? 

A Princeton University survey two years ago revealed that happiness is achieved at $75,000 a year. Two types of happiness emerged: day-to-day contentment and general satisfaction about one’s standing in life, with the former not necessary being affected by salary. Interesting to note was that previous surveys on the matter concluded absolute wealth didn’t impact one’s mood as much as relative wealth. In other words, having $100,000 compared to your neighbour’s $50,000 is more satisfying than $250,000 in general. 

Factors unique to young professionals are that the majority of us reside in major urban centres and face higher costs of living than perhaps the average person. Some of us may also still be paying off school debts and business loans, which would cause our salary/happiness threshold to increase. We’re curious to know what salary our readers think would result in general happiness, both everyday and in the long run, so we created a survey to do just that. Without further ado…


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