…to spend. But what are you spending your money on? The holiday season comes with a lot of bills- gifts to give, Boxing Day shopping sprees, decorations, etc. Will all this make us happy? It is wonderful to give but at the end of the spending season, we often end up with a lot of “stuff”. Why not spend more money on experiences? Life is so short.
I was recently reading a friend’s blog (journaling his trip to Africa in 2010) where he mentioned a study that concluded that people are happier spending money on life experiences instead of material things. The spirit of giving at Christmas is a wonderful thing but for the rest of the year, maybe we should spend more of our dollars on living life and experiencing what we can instead of accumulating more and more of the stuff that actually weighs us down. I won’t lie, I do love a nice purse or pair of shoes here and there. A trip to the U.S. for me often means good shopping and stocking up on things that I convince myself I need.
But I always gain more when I avoid the malls and instead direct my spending money towards concerts, dinners, and other experiences with friends and family. Anytime that my little cousins ask me to take them out, they know I will likely come through because I’d rather fill their lives with memories than spend to buy them toys and games.
There are many studies on the topic, here is one from “Psych Central”- http://psychcentral.com/news/2012/01/27/buying-new-experiences-not-things-tied-to-happiness/34167.html
So, if you have some money to spend, use it for shared experiences with the people you love and for exploring the world. Those are the things that will put a smile on your face in the end.