Why Experiences Matter

Debora Oppenheimer's portrait image
Debora Oppenheimer

March 18, 2019

Top 3 Reasons Why Experiences Are Better Than Material Things

Have you ever imagined taking a hike to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania? Then, imagine yourself buying a Samsung S10, which is part of the latest flagships of smart phones from the esteemed phone manufacturer. Then, take a moment to imagine yourself on the deck of a hot air balloon as it slowly rises to the sky in Australia. Imagine the winds blowing on your face, the pure look of wonder on the face of your partner, the sounds of the flare as the balloon continues to rise up. Now, stop and switch to imagining yourself in a brand new car.

Imagine that you are given the opportunity to either get that new washing machine that you desire, or an alternative to help a teen fulfill her dream of going to a piano conservatory, or helping a couple complete their down payment for their home.

Are you seeing a trend here? I could easily stop this article here because I have clearly helped you to see the reasons why you should pick a gift of experience over material things. However, let me show you three reasons for you to identify:

Material Things Give Short Time Happiness While Experiences Are Long Lasting

When I told you to imagine yourself on a hiking experience to the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro, I simply invited you to imagine an experience that creates happiness for a lifetime! That is a lifetime story that you will always continue to tell with glee to everyone, and within every circle. I mean, when you buy a Samsung S10, the ecstatic feeling of happiness will only last for a few months until Samsung releases the next phone that beats it easily. If you had gotten a Samsung s4 phone way back in 2012, I am not sure you would still be telling great stories about it and feeling fly at the same time. However, if you had taken that grueling hike to Mount Kilimanjaro's peak in 2012, people will still be amazed today and the feeling of happiness will still remain afresh within you.

In the same way, when you provide monetary help to a teenager in helping her to achieve a dream of going to a piano conservatory, you are guaranteed a lasting happiness every time you see her play like Mozart or Beethoven did.

Experience creates shared Happiness while Material things do not

In the beginning part, I told you to imagine yourself in a hot air balloon with your partner. That is because you have the opportunity to share experiences with other people. It helps to build a feeling of mutual likeness and disgust as well. It can also help you to build solid resolutions with the people you share such experience with. Have you imagined the kind of shared happiness that will arise when you help a couple settle their down payment? That joy that comes from such act is shared as well as long lasting. On the other hand, it is difficult for you to get other people to enjoy the experience of a new car. While you may get a friend to enjoy the ride, it may not inspire a life-changing resolution like an Experience does

Experience Creates Greater Value Than Material Things

This particular point has been corroborated many times and you can easily corroborate it as well. Imagine yourself moving to the rhythm of sounds with other people at the Rio Festival. The pure thrill of witnessing new cultures, meeting new people and trying to speak new languages will leave you exhausted and grateful. You can hardly get this with any material thing because the value of that thing ends when you have explored it fully. However, when you find yourself in an art museum, soaking the different feelings that artists try to show through their paintings, you will feel privileged to have paid a small fee to experience this. Little wonder people pay millions of dollars for certain artworks that inspire something deep within the buyers.

It is pertinent to note that all these reasons have been scientifically proved by academic research at Connell University. It has been proven that sharing experiences beats personal material stuff that you get for yourself.

There is no material thing that can ever rival one experience, both negative and positive. This is why I believe it is the best time for you to make plans to create experiences.

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WRITTEN BY

Debora Oppenheimer

Mom of two incredible boys who inspire me every day.

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