Your next raise might buy you a more lavish vacation, a better car, or a few extra bedrooms, but it’s not likely to buy you much happiness. Measuring the quality of people’s daily lives via surveys, the results of a study published in the June 30 issue of journal Science reveals that income plays a rather insignificant role in day-to-day happiness. Although most people imagine that if they had more money they could do more fun things and perhaps be happier, the reality seems to be that those with higher incomes tend to be tenser, and spend less time on simple leisurely activities. Scaling bad mood In 2004, the researchers developed a survey tool that measures people’s quality of daily lives. Then they asked 909 employed women to record the previous day’s activities and their feelings toward them. The study focused on women because the researchers wanted to study a homogeneous group while the surveys were in the early developmental stages. Recently, the researchers revisited the data from the 2004 and focused on correlating the amount of income with the percentage of time each participant reported as being in a bad mood each day. […]

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