Money allows us to meet our basic needs—to buy food and shelter and pay for healthcare. Meeting these needs is essential, and if we don’t have enough money to do so, our wellbeing suffers.
Beyond that, as Tom Rath suggests in his book, Wellbeing, “money can increase our short-term happiness by giving us more control over how we spend our time.” For example, it can give us the option to live closer to work, work fewer hours, and spend more time on leisure activities with friends. Money can be used to make our lives easier.
But the fact is that most of us don’t use money to buy more free time. Instead, we spend it on more expensive possessions.