A Happy Friend is Worth $20,000

by Chris Christensen Add comments
categories: Inside Chris's Head

My friends over at The Bigg Success Show (yes, who spell worse than I do) talked today about a study on happiness that came out recently. This study looked at the effect on your happiness of being around people who are happy, of having money, etc. One of the interesting quotes in the study was that “A happy friend is worth about $20,000”. That is you will get as much happiness from having a happy friend as you will from someone giving you $20,000.

This reminded me of a discussion I had with some friends who have been trying to to setup up an online business. They have spent 10s of thousands of dollars on getting a site created but the site which was due last June still has not been delivered. As you might expect, this has effected their stress levels and therefore their happiness. I offered to help by taking a look at the site. They want to pay me for the work but I could not articulate why that was not what I wanted. This study should help me articulate it.

What friend do you have who you could make happy? How much more likely is it that you could make a friend happy than it is that someone will mail you a check for $20,000 today?


I am the Director of Engineering for TripAdvisor.com/Flights. I am also the host of the Amateur Traveler. The Amateur Traveler is an online travel show that focuses primarily on travel destinations and what are the best places to travel to. It includes both a weekly audio podcast, a video podcast, and a blog.

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Hi Chris,

I came across the song you wrote to your wife back in 1996 for your 15th wedding anniversary. “A Woman of God” was a wonderful tribute to her. As a woman who is twice divorced and saved two years, I can only pray I will someday meet a man who will love me enough to create such a wonderful poetic melody to share with the rest of the world!

Thank you for honoring her and for sharing your true love with us.

In God’s Love,




Wow, thanks Monica. Your comment made my whole day!

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