Having just passed a milestone birthday (thanks to all of you who guessed 30), I made the conscious decision to forgo gifts in favor of more intimate experiences with both family and friends. As it turns out, gifts don’t make us as happy as we think they do and there is some strong science on the advantage of experiences.
One of the main reasons for this is what researchers call “adaptation”. The idea behind adaptation is that, whether it takes seconds or days, the excitement people feel about getting a shiny new thing tends to quickly fade. The reality is that there is always a Jones family out there that is going to have more than we do and keeping up with them is rather futile.
Conversely, experiences can help fundamentally change our perspective and aren’t as easily compared to others’. Our memory of them also tends to improve over time.
Here are two great articles on the value of experiences.
Why It’s Better To Give Experiences, Not Things
Why You Should Spend Your Money On Experiences Not Things
Quote of the Week
“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes
Have a great weekend!