Does (a lot of) money make you happier?

In the book “The Billion Dollar Secret” the author explores what personality traits make a billionaire and if very rich people are happier than the rest of us. During the research phase Rafael Badziag met with 21 self-made billionaires and found 20 principles that they have in common.


According to Rafael Badziag it comes down to about 20 principles that seem to enable billionaires to become so successful in business. The author published them in the book “The Billion Dollar Secret”. Even during the process of writing, the most common question people asked was if Badziag found that billionaires are happier than the average person.

The result was surprising: The author found that money itself doesn't change much about someone’s ability to be happy – it just magnified their personality. “Happy people become happier and unhappy people become miserable when they get wealthy,” wrote in an article for Business Insider. “Money doesn't give you happiness. It gives you choice. And a lot of money gives you a lot of choice – but not everybody can handle that choice.”

Another surprising result of the research was that the same personality traits that help billionaires earn money also help them build happy relationships.

So, what makes a billionaire? (The not so easy part)

  • A huge investment of time, energy, and effort.
  • Working 24/7 at the expense of private and family life.
  • Not being able to take vacation or having leisure time.
  • A huge burden of responsibility and stress and no one around that can help with the problems of the magnitude they cope with.

However, some of their personality traits help them not only to be wealthy but also happy.

  • They are experts in human psychology which helps them build harmonious long-term relationships.
  • Many are happy to live simple, often uneventful private lives.
  • They choose a tolerant partner.

So, what makes (at least) some happier than the average person?

  • Billionaires love their work and the opportunities it creates.
  • More money means also more control over their lives and environment. Their abilities and wealth give them more options to react to negative situations in their lives and create positive outcomes.
  • They are happy with who they are and proud of what they have accomplished and created and enjoy getting recognition for it.
  • They can often positively influence the lives of other people and seeing them grow, succeed, and be happy, which gives them fulfillment in return.
  • Many appreciate the simple things of life as in the case of English self-made billionaire Peter Hargreaves the "digging vegetables for lunch on a Sunday morning".


Read more on and