10 signs you value your experiences over material possessions

Graeme Richards by Graeme Richards | July 7, 2024, 11:37 am

In our world today, where consumerism often takes center stage, it can be refreshing to meet individuals who find their joy not in accumulating stuff, but in collecting memories and enriching their lives through varied experiences.

Are you one of them? Let’s dive into these 8 signs that might indicate you value your experiences more than your material possessions.

1. You prefer memories over merchandise

You know you’d prefer experiences when you’d rather have a photo album full of memories than a closet full of designer clothes. Sure, nice things are, well, nice – but can they compete with the joy of remembering that time you saw the sunrise from the top of a mountain? Or the thrill of that cooking class you took in Italy?

If your answer is no, then chances are you value experiences more than material possessions. You understand that while stuff can be lost or broken, memories last a lifetime.

2. Your bucket list is all about adventures

Take a look at your bucket list. Is it filled with things like “climb Mount Everest”, “learn Spanish” or “see the Northern Lights”? If you’re more excited about the thought of experiencing new things and exploring new places than owning the latest luxury car or designer watch, this is a strong sign that experiences hold more value to you than material possessions.

You find more joy in broadening your horizons and stepping out of your comfort zone than in shopping for high-end goods.

3. You spend more on experiences than on things

A few years back, I was saving up for a new, flashy TV. But then I had this opportunity to go on a road trip with my friends. Guess what I chose? The road trip! And you know what, I have never regretted that decision. That journey gave me stories to tell, friendships to cherish, and a whole lot of unforgettable memories.

So, if you find yourself often spending your hard-earned money on things that add to your life’s experiences rather than on material goods, you’re definitely someone who values experiences more. This doesn’t mean you never buy things; it just means that when it comes to choosing between a thing and an experience, the experience usually wins.

4. You don’t mind living with less

Did you know that people who prioritize experiences over material possessions tend to live more minimalist lifestyles? That’s right! They’re more likely to have less stuff, but they also tend to be happier. They understand that happiness doesn’t come from things, but from experiences and relationships.

If you’re someone who doesn’t feel the need to own lots of stuff, and instead prefers to live simply and focus on your experiences, this is a clear sign that you value experiences more than material things.

5. You value connection and relationships

There’s something truly special about shared experiences. They create bonds, foster deep connections, and build lasting relationships. Whether it’s a family trip, a concert with friends, or a community service project, these shared moments become part of our life stories.

If you find that your most cherished memories are not of the things you’ve bought, but of the laughter, the conversations, and the shared experiences with your loved ones, then it’s clear: you’re someone who values experiences over material possessions. You understand, deep down in your heart, that it’s not what we have in life, but who we have in our life that matters.

6. You’re not easily swayed by trends

I remember being a teenager and wanting to fit in by having the latest fashion or the newest gadget. But now, I’ve realized that trends come and go, but experiences last forever. I’d rather spend my money on a concert ticket or a weekend getaway than on the latest trendy item that will be out of style in a few months.

So, if you’re like me and you find yourself immune to the allure of the latest trends, this could be another sign that you value experiences over material possessions. You understand the joy of experiencing something new and exciting is far more rewarding than the fleeting satisfaction of owning something trendy.

7. You’re not afraid to get your hands dirty

Experiences can be messy, unpredictable, and downright scary sometimes. But you know what? That’s part of their beauty. There’s a certain thrill in diving headfirst into something new, a rush that no shiny new toy can give you.

Maybe it’s backpacking through the wilderness with nothing but a map and a compass, or maybe it’s volunteering at a local shelter. It’s not always comfortable, but it’s real and raw and alive. If you’re someone who isn’t afraid to roll up your sleeves and get stuck into life, trading a spotless suit for some muddy boots now and then, chances are you value experiences more than material possessions.

8. You’re more focused on personal growth

Did you know that experiences, especially challenging ones, contribute significantly to our personal growth? It’s true! Research suggests that people who spend money on experiences rather than material goods tend to have higher levels of satisfaction and happiness.

If you’re someone who seeks out new experiences as a way to learn, grow, and understand the world around you, this is a sign that you value experiences over material possessions. You understand that the true value of an experience isn’t just in the moment itself, but in the personal growth and self-improvement that comes from it.

9. You find joy in the simple things

I remember a time when I found immense happiness in just sitting on a park bench, watching the sunset, and enjoying an ice cream. It was a simple moment, nothing grand, but it was real and it was mine.

If you’re someone who finds joy and satisfaction in life’s simple pleasures – a good book, a leisurely walk, a heart-to-heart talk with a friend – you’re likely prioritizing experiences over material possessions. This isn’t about grand adventures or extravagant trips; it’s about appreciating the small, everyday experiences that make life meaningful.

10. You’re not tied down by stuff

Let’s face it: stuff can tie you down. When you own a lot of things, you have to worry about maintaining them, storing them, and protecting them. But when you prioritize experiences over possessions, you’re free. You’re free to move, to explore, to live life on your own terms without being weighed down by stuff.

Final thought

Here’s the hard truth: life is short. And at the end of it all, you won’t remember the things you bought. You’ll remember the places you visited, the people you met, the experiences you had. If you’re someone who truly gets this, who understands that life is fleeting and experiences are precious, then it’s clear – you value experiences over material possessions.

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