When’s the last time you tried a new wine? Gone out for an adventure instead of just another shopping trip? Do you think that if you purchased an experience for your money, you might be happier than if you just bought some stuff? We think that a glass of wine shared with friends beats anything you can buy at the store, and you know what?
Science agrees with us.
Recent studies have shown that when people buy material goods they don’t feel as happy as they could. What they should be doing is buying life experiences. A life experience can be as easy as taking a loved one out to dinner, going on a vacation, or relaxing and talking with friends over a glass of wine. It doesn’t have to be hard to do, it just means you trade your money for not just some thing; but a story you can tell, and maybe share with a friend.
Those that choose to spend their money on a social experience, shared with family and friends, always seem to come out on the better end of the deal. Get out there and do something new and you tell us if you don’t feel happier than just buying something at the store. One science article puts it like this:
The study demonstrates that experiential purchases, such as a meal out or theater tickets, result in increased well-being because they satisfy higher order needs, specifically the need for social connectedness and vitality — a feeling of being alive.
If that wasn’t enough, the same studies go on to show that people who purchase experiences rather than things are better liked by others. So not only are you happier, but people like you better too! Think about the last time you had a conversation with someone who only talked about the things that they had, and now think about the person that always has a new story about something they’ve done. Who would you rather talk to? The article says it like this:
In another experiment using a survey, the researchers told people about someone who had purchased a material item such as a new shirt or a life experience like a concert ticket. They then asked them a number of questions about that person. They found that simply learning that someone made a material purchase caused them to like him or her less than learning that someone made an experiential purchase.
Something to think about the next time you head out shopping. Instead of grabbing some material thing that might make you happy for a fleeting moment, why don’t you grab someone you know and have an experience you’ll talk about for years? Go out to a special dinner, take a trip out of town, there are a million different things you can do!
We might suggest a wine tasting, but that’s just us.