Some think that income and happiness are unrelated. They're right– when one's income is above about $75,000. Of course this amount varies from person to person. Some are happy with $50K while others are never happy. Details of this study can be seen here.
Maybe you suspected this all along. So it requires a certain amount of money to live what one considers a happy, reasonably stress-free life. If this figure of $75K (maybe $80K- or higher now) is correct, according to a CNNMoney analysis, there are about 63% of Americans earning below this amount. That being the case, can we conclude that two out of three income producers are stressed and not happy?
For those 63%, a higher income could bring them closer to their version of happiness. "Increasing income" got 182,000,000 hits on Google while "increasing one's economic value" got 2. The demand for increasing income outstripped the supply of "increasing one's economic value." That's why we are focusing on the latter.
It's one thing to say "go to school and get a good education". STEM is big advice these days. "Get a STEM education and you'll be ok." That may be true for some. But on the other hand there are software engineers who got burned out and are working in bookstores, bakeries and bowling alleys. So, there seems to be another dimension to happiness that isn't immediately obvious.
The happiest working people I know are those who are doing what they love and are getting paid for it. We may all know someone like that. They are lucky that they were able to find a job that matched their passion. [We are currently developing a process for this passion-matching using cutting-edge, post-AI/modeling technology.]
If you have played BUX, you know that the game is about doing better. Money just keeps the score. Whatever you want to do (we'll get to that at a later date), if you do it better than most, you should be paid more than most. That's the essence of the game and a reason for pictureless/wordless cards. Whatever you want to do you can imagine it in the cards.
Bottom line: Whatever you are doing, play to be better, increase your economic value and get paid more to achieve the happiness you deserve.