I would really like you to become not only a millionaire, but the happiest millionaire - and why not also the happiest person around, while you're at it! You may ask me this, though: if money can't buy happiness - and I really think this is true - then why would financial wealth make you any happier? Worse, is there a risk that it would rather make you unhappy - or at least less happy than you used to be?
Becoming a millionaire can happen in many different ways. Some people just do something they really like and - typically by a combination of a lot of effort, skill, and luck - their success brings them great financial wealth. Some others follow a more delibarate planning process with more specific financial goals in their mind and build their wealth through a more systematic effort. And then there are those who simply get lucky - weather through birth, an inheritance, a lottery ticket, or anything else - and receive their wealth without any effort of their own. Yet, no matter which way we get to our first million, we expect it to bring - or at least increase - our happiness. Being the happiest millionaire is sure a goal worth pursuing, but what does it really take to achieve it?
Research and experience show that happiness comes from a combination of things: having fulfilling relationships with people that you find important in your life, achieving things that you set out to pursue, being able to make choices concerning important matters in your life, and feeling of being in control of your life. Money alone can not bring you any of these, but it can significantly help in some of them. If you want to become the happiest millionaire around, you need to be the one to make sure that you make your wealth to work hard also for your happiness.
One of the most common reasons for marriages - or other comparable relationships - breaking up is disagreements concerning money. These disagreements often start when money becomes scarce: stress and concern of being able to make the ends meet sets in, and big differences in opinion of spending habits make it worse. Having enough money - or better, having more than plenty - can help much in avoiding personal financails related stress. It can also much lessen the friction caused by differences in views of the right ways to spend and save money. Rather than feeling that your spouse or partner is wrecking your lives and financial well-being by his/her spending habits, you can afford to see the situation just as it actually is: a simple difference in views, and nothing life-threatening. If you are able to let your wealth help you to this mental step, it is already a step closer to you being a happiest milliionaire.
Taking much effort and achieving your goals through it is not only among the greatest sources of satisfaction, but also one of the most essential and powerful ways to grow your self-appreciation and confidence. It's one of the great paradoxes in life: we want things and hope to get them easily, thinking that that getting them is all that matters, while a really big part of the satisfaction actually comes from succeeding in the effort required to get them. This is especially true over long term, and certainly for achieving financial wealth. For people who either inherited their wealth or were born into it, a key for their self-appreciation seems to be whether they feel they achieved something else that they consider significant and important. For the rest of us, achieving significant financial wealth is certainly something that makes us feel good about ourselves and therefore can be a major contributor for our becoming the happiest millionaire.
Money is a key resource in our lives, and therefore having plenty of it - like any millionaire would have - gives us many choices that we would not otherwise have. First, there's the simple purchasing power that it has, and while I doubt shopping makes people happy over a longer term, it does give a degree of satisfaction to be able to buy things that matter much to you. Especially important is the ability it gives you to be able to pick up interests and hobbies that might otherwise be beyond your reach. Second, it also enables you to make a wider range of profession related choices: setting up certain kinds of businesses, for example, can require a fair bit of equity. Finally, when you become financially independent, you will have a lot more choices regarding how you want to use your time. For me, this has really been the biggest positive: being able to allocate enough time to your family and friends, and being really able to choose how I distribute my time between my different professional activities has given a sense of freedom that I never actually expected. It's one of the key things that makes me feel like a happiest millionaire!
Achieving financial wealth also contributes to a great sense of control in two different ways. First, just the fact that you set-out to do something and succeed in it, helps you in feeling that you can control most things in life. Second, the resource aspect of money, as discussed above, gives you more options in managing various situations in your life and therefore increases your ability to control what happens to you. While there are many things in life you really cannot affect, having enough choises about things you can control increases our self-confidence and therefore also our happiness.
As you hopefully agree by now, there are so many ways your million dollar journey can make you a happier person. The same is true for the actual arrival of this journey, even if you will probably continue your trip further without even stopping for a pause. What's important is, though, that you make the choices that are right for you and those around you, the choices that will result in both a happy journey and and an even happier arrival. After all, this journey of yours will probably continue way beyond that million dollar milestone and become an essential part of the rest of your life. Therefore, make sure it's really a major source of happiness - you only have one life to live, so no reason not to make it a happiest one. Just go and become the happiest millionaire around!