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People Who Value Time More Than Money Are Happier

Time or money? Choose time, if you want to be happier! The pursuit of happiness appears to lie in valuing time, according to a new study published recently.


Time or money? Different people will, undoubtedly, be tempted by either — but who is happier? A new study published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science claims that people attributing more importance to time generally enjoy more happiness than those who have a predilection for money. Yet again, we find that the greater advantage is not solely in money-making.

A team of researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of California gathered data from over 4,000 participants. Apart from responding to questions pertaining to their levels of happiness, the latter were asked one simple question: do they want more money, or more time?.

The results show that 64% of the participants wanted more money. However, those desiring for more time were generally happier. The researchers conclude that what matters is the perspective, and not what the people actually possess: it’s all about what they want more, because this indicates what they value more. The results seem to suggest that, ultimately, it does not matter if someone has more time or more money: rather, what is really important is the mindset pertaining to the two resources.

According to the authors, the people who value their time more than their money are more likely to be happier, regardless of the actual amount of money they have.

“What matters is the value people place on each resource,” write the team. “Beyond the amount of these resources people have, happiness is linked to the resource people want.”

Another finding of this study suggests a link with age: older participants were more likely to prefer time. Furthermore, they were also the ones more likely to work more, and would thus have more money. This might explain why they value time to a greater extent.


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