According to research conducted by the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas, spending money on experiential purchases rather than material ones has a greater impact on people’s happiness. Individuals who spend money on experiences tend to have greater in-the-moment happiness compared to those who focus on material items.
The study involved 2,635 participants who were categorized as either material or experiential purchasers. The researchers analyzed the emotions and purchasing behaviors and discovered that—regardless of cost—experiential purchases consistently brought higher levels of happiness. The finding remained consistent across various categories of expenditures, reinforcing the notion that people derive more happiness from experiences rather than possessions.
Learn more about the study below:
“The researchers concluded that people are happier with experiential purchases over material ones irrespective of when you measure happiness: before, during or after consumption. Experiences also provoke more satisfaction even though people typically spend more time using their material possessions. The researchers said a possible explanation is the endurance of experiences in people’s memories, while the perceived value of material goods weakens over time.
‘If you want to be happier, it might be wise to shift some of your consumption away from material goods and a bit more toward experiences,’ lead author Kumar said. ‘That would likely lead to greater well-being.'”
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