Would you rather have a new designer bag or travel to your choice of destination? I know which I’d pick.
Here are some reasons why experiences should be the higher priority:
1. We get used to the things we have. The things we once wanted but now have fade into the background. So it’s easier for us to feel unsatisfied again. Another trinket catches our attention, and we think that will make us happy. Yes, but never for long.
2. We can force ourselves to see the light even in the worst of times. Unlike buying a new foundation, which you find out much later is the wrong shade for you hence something you wasted your money on, we can perceive our unlucky experiences in a good light. The saying that life is 90% your attitude couldn’t be any truer.
3. You can’t really compare experiences. It’s easy to see who’s got more expensive and newer things. It’s not the case for experiences. Just this summer Miguel got to party in Budapest and Carla climbed a mountain for the first time. You didn’t go on an adventure, but you spent it happily learning how to cook and interning. Who’s to say Miguel, Carla, or you had the better summer vacation? You were all very happy, and that’s all that matters!
4. You can really immerse in experiences. When you climbed a mountain, you were really in the moment. Your legs ached, you felt your sweaty shirt cling to your body, you heard the chirping birds, you smelled dung and mint. And time went by. Nothing else mattered except your life and nature. Isn’t that a kind of heaven? You need to be in the moment to experience happiness at its highest intensity. You don’t get that with material things. (See #1.)
5. The wait makes you feel good. You look forward to your trip, your date, your sexy time, your best friend’s wedding. Yes, you also look forward to getting a new dress and new pair of stilettos. But with experiences, you end up being a spoiled brat when you want the things NOW!
6. You learn how to treasure your surroundings. While your favorite clothes and your favorite purse are still with you, experiences are fleeting. You went on a Palawan trip, but now you’re home. You’re coming back there later this year, but that vacation is going to be different from the previous one. No experience is the same. You see beauty in everything because you wholeheartedly want to.
7. Experiences can build character and personality. When you have an open mind, you can learn from any experience and anyone who was part of it. And whatever insight you’ve gained will broaden how you think and see the world. Even when the experience is a painful one, guiding yourself (and letting other people guide you) to be strong and happy is one of the most rewarding things in life.
Source: Fast Company
Follow Stephanie on Twitter.