Marie Claire Magazine (UK)

How Much Money do You Need to be Happy? Financial insecurity has held a grip on many people these days, but how do you remain happy when life around you seems so stressful and financially unstable?

"A recent survey was conducted to assess how happy we are as a nation, but won't the fact that we are in a deep recession skew the results? And how can you measure happiness anyway? Surely it means different things to different people. When America was surveyed, the vast majority rated themselves as 'happy.' But this contradicted official data, which showed a shocking 26 percent of the US population has experienced mental illness in the past 12 months. This backs up countless studies that reveal material wealth and social status will not give you a sense of fulfillment in the way that close communities, loving relationships and getting genuine satisfaction from work or hobbies can. American matchmaker, Christie Nightingale of Premier Match states, 'Happiness is a transient state of emotion that occurs when we stop to take in a beautiful view, enjoy a night out with close friends, kiss a loved one or enter into a caring loving relationship.' Mairead Molloy of UK's matchmaking firm Berkeley Int'l concurs, 'We are more financially secure today than our grandparents could have dreamed, yet it has been shown that increased wealth has not made a difference in our overall happiness.' So, if you still believe that happiness might come when you reach a six-figure salary or marry a rich man, it's time for a rethink."