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Experiences Or Expenditures?

By Cara

Shopping can be therapeutic for some, but for many going on a good holiday gives much more pleasure than buying a material possession.

Psychologist Professor Thomas Gilovich, of Cornell University, New York, and colleagues carried out the research into why people get more enduring happiness from experiences than possessions.

It was found that memories of trips away bring us greater joy because they are personal and has many more emotions attached to it. Purchasing material possessions give momentary happiness and satisfaction.

The memories of happiness are ever-lasting and can't be compared with the experience of other people. However, the joy over material possessions can fade away as soon as we come across the newer and better models owned by other people.

Imagine you have bought a flat-screen TV. You"re very happy with it and then find out that your neighbour has a bigger TV with clearer picture than yours. This will surely make you feel a bit disappointed and annoyed.

However, suppose you go on a vacation to your favourite destination and have fun with your family. You come back with loads of memories. After one year, if you sit back and think about your vacation and glance through the photographs, you will re-live the moments and treasure each and every moment spend.

So, what do you prefer...an expensive shopping bill or a nice family vacation?

Read more about: shopping happiness
Story first published: Monday, April 12, 2010, 16:56 [IST]
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