Why (Some) Rich People are Unhappy While Poor People are Happy

happy poor unhappy rich

One of the most read blog posts on our website is about 100 celebrities who committed suicide. It is popular because people are confused as to how rich and powerful individuals, who seem to have everything, can commit such an unthinkable act. Meanwhile, there are countless others who aspire to have the lives of these people we look up to, expecting them to be happy, when in reality, they are as anxious and depressed as the rest of us.

We are constantly told that we should strive to have more in our lives and aim for the life of those super rich and powerful celebrities. However, these individuals ultimately experience negativity, depression, and even suicidal thoughts, which indicates that they are unhappy. This raises questions about the promise of happiness that comes with being rich. It is an interesting paradox of happiness, isn’t it?

To resolve this paradox, we must consider that many “poor” people are actually happy because they understand that they cannot have it all and they accept this reality. They become content with what they have and stop striving for higher goals such as money, power, and influence. By doing so, they find happiness.

However, unhappiness still affects many so-called “poor” people who don’t have an abundance of resources – whether financial, social, or otherwise – in almost every aspect of their lives, but they still want these resources. They try to experience the life of the rich by purchasing things that are outside their income range, such as expensive clothes, food, cars, and jewelry. These individuals are unhappy because they desire what they do not have, which is essentially the fastest way to become unhappy.

On the other hand, the rich are able to have it all. They can buy and experience the best things that life has to offer in virtually any domain of life. However, many of them are still unhappy. After all the parties, expensive purchases, and trips around the world, they realize that they are still unhappy. They come to the realization that there is nothing else they can buy or do to experience the happiness they deeply crave, so they become depressed.

These rich individuals cannot hide anymore behind the aspirations or delusions that the less wealthy people often experience. This is why they become unhappy, depressed, and even suicidal. Of course, the topic of suicide is much deeper and cannot be simplified to this extent. However, the positive news is that we can still find happiness regardless of our wealth.

Some people argue that it is still better to cry in the back of a Mercedes than to laugh on the back of a bicycle. They imply that we should continue to pursue money, hoping that these random celebrities just don’t know how to be happy despite their power, influence, and wealth. They suggest that if we had their resources, we would be able to do it better.

However, the truth is that we can learn to be incredibly happy with just enough money. We need to have some money to take care of our essential needs, but once those needs are met, we can stop seeking wealth for the sake of happiness and instead focus on other activities that are more likely to lead to even greater happiness.

And this is exactly what we teach here at Optimal Happiness—that money isn’t always the solution for happiness. We should invest in other activities that are more likely to lead to higher levels of happiness, even if they are not money-related. In fact, there comes a point when we should stop seeking money solely for the sake of happiness and focus on these other activities instead.

Indeed, happiness is possible for virtually everyone today and forever. We just need to get our money-related facts right, as money can only buy happiness to a certain extent, which is where the lack of money causes unhappiness. However, once we have enough money, other factors become important in maintaining and increasing our well-being, and we need to prioritize them in order to live our best life, which realistically speaking is possible for most people.

To learn more about how to be happy, I invite you to speak with one of our happiness experts in a free 30-minute call, which you can book here.

Stay happy, regardless of how much (or little) money you have!

Roman Russo: Author of Optimal Happiness

Roman Russo: Author of Optimal Happiness

Roman Russo wasn't always happy and struggled with his own negative emotions, anxieties, and depression, until one day he pledged to resolve this part of life, whatever it took. The journey took 6 years, but it was worth it. Today, Roman considers himself to be one of the happiest people alive, part of the 1% of the happiest elite, and he now teaches others a working and universal happiness formula to reach a similar goal. He offers his best advice on Optimal Happiness social media, newsletter, blog, and books, and teaches a complete and unconditional happiness formula in his online courses.

15 thoughts on “Why (Some) Rich People are Unhappy While Poor People are Happy”

  1. Greed can be a sin for rich and poor alike and there is nothing that can satisfy greed. That’s what makes people unhappy, the constant hunger of greed.

  2. Correct, with the end of greed being the beginning of happiness. Once people stop wanting what they don’t have, they realize what they already have, which is often more than enough. This realization leads to happiness. This holds true for both the rich and the poor, but we will want to put more pressure on the “rich” because people often associate happiness with wealth. However, in practice, there are plenty of unhappy rich people, proving that money, success, and power are not the only requirements for happiness. In fact, in many cases, materialistic pursuit on leads to unhappiness, leading to the next logical question: what does it really take to be happy?

  3. This is so true! Thanks for the encouragement on how our perspectives ought to be. Great post!!!

  4. “There is one who makes himself rich, yet has nothing; And one who makes himself poor, yet has great riches.” Proverbs 13:7

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“The problem is that of optimization,” states Roman Russo, author of Optimal Happiness: The Fastest & Surest Way To Reach Your Happiest Potential. There is plenty of advice on how to be happier or less sad, but no one is speaking about how to become the happiest we can be. And this is the difference that makes all the difference. By not looking at our maximum potential for happiness, we fall short of achieving it. After all, we all have hundreds of ideas on how to be happier or less sad, but most people still feel like they are not living their best lives. As such, Optimal Happiness explores the question of how to be the happiest we can be, regardless of who we are, where we are from, and what our life circumstances are. It proposes a complete and unconditional formula for happiness and explains how you too can become happy today and forever, inviting you to join the 1% happiness elite and become one of the happiest people alive.

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