Check out this awesome article on happiness
The gist: There is the common phrase “money can’t buy happiness.” While this is true to some extent, it doesn’t prove they aren’t correlated either. The article analyzes certain people, their spending habits, and their happiness index as a result of their spending. What the study found is a noteable increase in happiness in those who spent their earnings on others; whether it be buying them a gift or creating fond memories that could be shared, their “index” was greater compared to those who spent their earnings on more frugal things, such as a new car or watch.
I think obtaining happiness models directly with how one obtains knowledge (in my opinion). I would describe knowledge not as an indication via I.Q. level, but by having a diverse spectrum of life experiences. The more diverse the experiences, the more in depth the database of experiences in your head that you have the capability to cross-reference a given decision based upon previous indication.
Happiness, similarly to intelligence, is experienced driven. It is derived from empirical first hand experience of different simulations and life experiences that collectively comprise your memory.
Conclusion: spend your money on others or creating found memories, ie a trip to Costa Rica :), rather than things of materialistic nature. You’ll be much happier in the long run.