Every generation tends to state that things were better in the old days; people were kinder, work was work, and everyone flourished despite not having the commodities we have today. We usually scoff at such remarks, but as we get older, we tend to see that things really used to be better.
There is no doubt about the fact that one of the main reasons for this is the consumer culture we live in today. Every item we could ever desire is at our reach, and it seems that we don't have to wait for anything anymore. Collecting different trinkets may make us happy in the short run, but real and long-lasting happiness comes from traveling with the people we love, or even alone, and gathering experiences that no consumer product can compete with. For that reason, and many more, this is why you should focus on experiences rather than objects:
1. Experiences make great memories
There is nothing like the thrill of a bungee jump, a hike in the wild, or even standing in the crowd at your favorite band's gig. These kinds of experiences make memories that are hard to forget, lucky for us. When you have different experiences, they stick to your memory, and you can remember them fondly, even when you get older and aren't able to do the same things anymore.
2. Experiences create long-term happiness
You know that rush you get when buying the perfect pair of shoes, or when you get that lipstick you've looking for? If the answer is "yes", you probably also know the come-down from a shopping rush. Why does that happen? Because that's how we are wired. According to several studies, we get a high when we buy something we like, but it doesn’t last for very long because we get used to it and the effect wears off. Unlike shopping, the experiences we go through leave a long-lasting impression on us, and in other words, make us happy in the long-term.
3. Experiences help you meet new people
The connections we make throughout our lives can teach us plenty of things about ourselves, and also help us meet life-long friends. When you do something you like, you meet new people who like doing the same things and build a connection based on common ground. That gift of meeting new people is priceless and gives you a lot more than any object can. The relationships we make also allow us to hear about other people's experiences, and that opens to door to get to know fascinating people, and perhaps learning something from them.
4. Experiences don't come with a compare list
In the past few years, we have all developed a comparison rank on the items we purchase. Our old phone doesn't compare to the new one, our new gadgets are cooler than the old ones, and everything else gets an automatic grade when we get out hands on it. Experiences, however, cannot be compared to one another because they are vastly different. Whenever we go to a new place, travel to a location we're never to before, and do things that are new to us; we experience a new kind of joy. Each experience leaves a unique mark on us, and no is comparing between those sensations.
5. Experiences make for a clutter-free life
A lot of us have homes packed with different items that most of them go unused, and just take up space. If you don’t organize these items than they tend to take over your home and create not only physical clutter but also a mental mess. When you collect experiences instead of objects, you don’t have clutter in your home, and in your head. Instead, you create a peace of mind that leads to happiness and can help you sort out those thoughts that we all struggle with at times.
Many of the physical objects in our lives serve an important purpose, but there are also items that don’t really contribute to our personal happiness. If you want to be a happier, more fulfilled person, all you have to do is trade some of the objects in your life for experiences, and allow yourself to enjoy life at their fullest.