Experienced well-being rises with income, even above $75,000 per year
Past research has found that experienced well-being does not increase above incomes of $75,000/y. This finding has been the focus of substantial attention from researchers and the general public, yet is based on a dataset with a measure of experienced well-being that may or may not be indicative of actual emotional experience (retrospective, dichotomous reports). Here, over one million real-time reports of experienced well-being from a large US sample show evidence that experienced well-being rises linearly with log income, with an equally steep slope above $80,000 as below it. This suggests that higher incomes may still have potential to improve people’s day-to-day well-being, rather than having already reached a plateau for many people in wealthy countries.
Data aggregated by income level have been deposited in OSF () (). Granular data are stored in a repository and are available to qualified researchers who wish to verify or extend the claims of this paper; contact the author for access information.
March 25, 2021: The Data Availability section has been updated.
Have you ever thought to yourself, “If only I could increase my salary by 10%, I’d feel better”? How about, “I wish I had a trust fund. How happy I would be!” I don’t blame you -- I’ve had the same thoughts many times. Money is a big part of our lives, our i
Listen to this episode from PsychCrunch on Spotify. This is Episode 25 of PsychCrunch, the podcast from the British Psychological Society’s Research Digest, sponsored by Routledge Psychology. Are our personalities set in stone, or can we choose to change them? In this bonus episode, Matthew Warren talks to former Research Digest editor Christian Jarrett about his new book Be Who You Want: Unlocking the Science of Personality Change. Christian discusses the evidence-based methods you can use to alter your personality, whether you’re an introvert who wants to become the life of the party, or you simply wish you were a little more open to new experiences. He also explains how our personalities evolve over the course of our lifespans, even when we’re not consciously trying to change them, and ponders how they might be affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Be Who You Want: Unlocking the Science of Personality Change is out on May 18th in the United States and May 20th in the United Kingdom. Episode credits: Presented by Matthew Warren. Mixing and editing by Jeff Knowler. PsychCrunch theme music by Catherine Loveday and Jeff Knowler. Art work by Tim Grimshaw. Work discussed in this episode includes: Merely desiring to alter your personality is not enough, and may backfire unless you take concrete action to change Longest ever personality study finds no correlation between measures taken at age 14 and age 77 Here’s How Our Personality Changes As We Age Other background reading A little discussed effect of therapy: it changes your personality Here’s How Personality Changes In Young Adulthood Can Lead To Greater Career Satisfaction When Deciding How To Improve Our Personalities, Moral Character Is Not A Priority New insights into lifetime personality change from “meta-study” featuring 50,000 participants