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  • A new study finds that experiences make us happier than material possessions.

  • So go ahead - just throw your iPhone right in the trash!

  • Hey guys, Tara here for Dnews - and no matter how you choose to spend your free time, there seems to be 2 kinds of people: people who prefer experiences, and people who prefer material possessions.

  • It's not up to us to say which one is better - after all, if it makes you happy, then it makes you happy.

  • But a new study published this week in Psychological Science, seems to indicate that on the whole, experiences make us happier than possessions.

  • For this study, researchers tracked 100 college students and over 2,200 randomly selected adults, to see what excites people the most.

  • And what they found, is that people tend to feel more positive about experiences, than material goods.

  • A lot of it has to do with anticipation.

  • When we're looking forward to a trip, for example - it's kind of this nebulous thing.

  • We have an idea of what's gonna happen, but the unpredictability of those events, is what makes them exciting.

  • It piques our creativity, and we start to think about all the fun things we're gonna do.

  • On the flip side, when we're anticipating a big purchase - our excitement is usually tinged with impatience.

  • The example they bring up is someone purchasing the latest iPhone.

  • In this day and age, everyone researches everything - because nobody wants to feel buyer's remorse.

  • So we almost always know exactly what we're gonna get.

  • We know how many megapixels the phone has, we know what it looks like, we know minute details of every single feature of most of the products we buy.

  • And that takes a lot of the excitement out of it.

  • Even something as banal as waiting in line, is more fun when you're doing it for an event, than for a release of the next big gadget.

  • People are bonding and socializing, and even news reports have shown that people waiting in lines for material purchases are more likely to end in violence.

  • Another factor could be money.

  • People tend to get competitive over material possessions, but that's not usually the case with vacations or events.

  • Interestingly, there was another study done last year, that expanded on this topic.

  • And it talked about how the kinds of experiences we like, change as we get older.

  • So while young people tend to prefer new, uncommon experiences, as we get older, we actually find MORE joy from normal everyday experiences.

  • And it stems from how we define ourselves.

  • When we're young, we build our identity through our extraordinary experiences.

  • But when we get old, that changes - and we start to define ourselves, through the ordinary experiences that comprise our daily lives.

  • Personally, I've always enjoyed experiences to material possessions - because possessions only last so long.

  • Once you have kids, and your kids have kids, nobody's gonna care about the time you waited 2 days in line to get the newest iPhone release.

  • But they WILL like seeing photos from your awesome trip to Fiji where you wrestled a shark.

  • Think about it.

  • While we're on the topic of adventures, I wanna remind you guys that I host another show here on Discovery called Anyhoo, and we just shot an episode last week about the 7 different times someone has died while taking a selfie.

  • Yes that happened. It's horrifying, and kinda makes you think twice about taking photos on your next vacation.

  • You can find that episode, along with many others, over at

  • And in the meantime, let us know in the comments below, which side of the fence YOU'RE on - is it experiences, or material goods that make you happier?

  • That's it for me, but as always - thank you guys for watching!

A new study finds that experiences make us happier than material possessions.


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