Is there really a secret to happiness? In 2014 I found myself sitting on my couch re-watching The Pursuit of Happiness with Will Smith. I am not exaggerating when I tell you I watched that movie 19 times in one week. True story.
I’m not really sure what I thought I would learn each time I hit play but I was surely in search of my own happiness, that was clear.
Maybe I thought by re-watching the movie I would notice something I didn’t notice before. You know how you watch a movie and then you watch it again and you notice something you didn’t notice before?
Well I’m pretty sure I was convinced the secret to happiness was hidden in that movie somewhere and I was bound to find it.
Fortunately, I did find happiness but it wasn’t from that movie. And it was a couple years later.
Turns out I was so focused on things, and the things I wanted, that I just kept pushing what really mattered away.
I was pushing experiences away.
Living like a Minimalist has always been my way of life whether I knew it or not. But more along the lines of living a clutter free life.
However, even though I hated clutter, I focused on things not experiences.
My vision board was full of images such as an overpriced house that was clearly too big for my small family, cars we didn’t need, and other things we would eventually become bored with.
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A Minimalist Lifestyle
A Minimalist Lifestyle is making intentional choices that improve our quality of life and make you happier in the long run.
Finances play a large role in the concept of Minimalism. How you choose to spend your money makes a difference with regard to what you bring into your life, both literally and figuratively.
Think of all the material possessions you’ve purchased over the years. How many of them bring you fond memories?
In many cases, they only end up bringing you clutter in the long run.
Instead, let’s focus on spending money on experiences, rather than things.
When you make it about experiences instead of things, you’ll likely find yourself more satisfied.
Not only that but you will be more successful in life, your career, or business.
For years, I struggled as an Entrepreneur and I couldn’t ever figure out why. Many times I swore I was doomed and no matter what I was cursed with bad luck.
When I finally stopped chasing the money and stopped buying things and started focusing on the experiences that is when things began to change.
Of-course as a Christian I give God all credit for everything. Jesus has filled a hole in my heart that things could never fill. It just took me to stop focusing on things to realize that.
A Minimalist Lifestyle has forever changed my outlook on life. Not only have I found the secret to happiness but I have also found myself, my purpose.
It is actually pretty crazy how things just clear up when we buy experiences and not things.
I never really understood how rich people could become depressed. After all they had everything, right?
Wrong! You can own everything your little heart desires but money can’t buy Salvation nor can money cannot buy happiness.
It can however, pave the way for you pay for said experiences like family vacations. But the rest is up to us. The memory making specifically.
Just because you live a Minimalist Lifestyle doesn’t mean you have to be low income.
Just because you choose not to spend your money on things doesn’t mean you can’t spend money on experiences.
Me and my family love going on vacations, weekly trips to the movies, ice skating, snow tubing and so much more.
We wouldn’t be able to enjoy most of these experiences without money. And if we chose to buy things we wouldn’t have the money to buy experiences like these.
Below are 4 Reasons To Buy Experiences Not Things
- Better Memories
As I’ve already mentioned, material possessions rarely bring long-lasting memories.
You may look back fondly on a special gift you once received, but it’s likely the reasons for your emotional attachment is due to the giver or that fact that it was something you’d wanted quite a bit.
Material things that bring us joy are worth buying, for sure. But most things won’t be remembered years later.
On the other hand, experiences are the stuff memories are made of.
Consider investing in a trip or an event to share with loved ones over something that will probably just end up sitting around the house.
- Less Clutter
While we’re on the subject of sitting around, most physical things just end up taking space.
As you know, that’s the exact opposite of minimalism’s intent. You’re learning to choose to bring only the items that you truly love into your home, and that’s great.
Experiences like a vacation or even playing with your child in the back yard never take up space or add clutter to your environment.
- Improved Mindfulness
Mindfulness is the concept of being present in the moment. Things can make us feel good for a little while. They rarely bring us true happiness and are often forgotten quickly.
Experiences are different. They have a way of grounding you to the here and now. You’re actively involved in the moment, enjoying an event, and connecting with others.
You appreciate the moment and that can lead to long-term fulfillment.
- More Gratitude
Have you ever really felt grateful for the new dress you picked up on sale or the big TV you were able to buy?
Perhaps you were glad to have these things and did appreciate the ability to purchase them. That’s great, but experiences often lead to a deeper sense of gratitude.
With experiences come connections, memories, and activities that bring true contentment.
Experiences aren’t as fleeting as things. We often look back on them and feel gratitude.
In general, you’ll find that experiences bring you greater joy and happiness than material possessions. Investing in experiences complements a minimalist lifestyle.
Keep this in mind when moving forward.