Recently, the quixotic Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha created a Ministry of Happiness and Couple’s Fulfillment and appointed hi sister as commissioner. Perhaps, Gov. Okorocha had read the recent World Happiness Report released by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network which ranked countries based on their abilities to provide basic necessities of life for their citizens thereby making them happy. Denmark was ranked the “Happiest Nation,” while Burundi, “the least happy”; but Nigeria ranked the 103rd least happiest in the World.
In Denmark, a lawmaker takes $38,000 as his annual salaries while a Nigerian lawmaker takes more than four times that per month ($181,974), yet a graduate in Nigeria cannot afford three square meals. No wonder Nigerians are not happy. But, how much should Nigerians earn to be happy? We present below an interesting comparative survey that answers that question.
A new study finds that different salaries bring day-to-day happiness versus overall satisfaction with your life–but anything extra doesn’t do much at all for your emotional well-being.
If you thought earning more money would make you happier, you were only partly right. There’s a point at which more money has decreasing returns in terms of our emotional well-being and life satisfaction.
Using a survey of 1.7 million individuals from 164 countries, researchers calculated that $95,000 is an optimum salary for achieving fulfillment. (That’s just for individuals, not families, and an international average.)
If it’s a matter of one’s day-to-day feelings of happiness–as opposed to broad satisfaction with your life–then just $60,000 to $75,000 may be sufficient, according to the study. After those points, the benefits of making more money decrease, athough there may still be benefits.
Keep in mind that the average household income for the U.S. is $65,000, and 75% of American households earn less than $75,000. So while some percentage are accruing money vastly above what makes them happy, most people are a long way off.
“Increases in happiness tend to diminish as you make more money,” Andrew Tebb, lead author of the new paper, tells Fast Company. “A $20,000 increase from $30,000 to $50,000 is likely to bring more change to your life than if you make $20,000 on top of $150,000.”
The results, which come from Purdue University and the University of Virginia, align with a well-known 2010 study from psychologist Daniel Kahneman and the economist Angus Deaton. They found that people’s happiness was correlated with income but only up to incomes of somewhere between $60,000 and $120,000 (though the number was widely reported as $75,000). After that point, the relationship between happiness and income weakened.