When buying birthday or Christmas gifts for your loved ones consider including some experiences in the mix. Physical gifts are great, but there are many reasons why experience gifts are much better for the recipient.
Experiences are harder to compare.
Everyone perceives an experience in a different way and everyone gets something different from the experience. Because experiences are so personal, each person will apply their own unique prior knowledge and their unique likes and dislikes to each adventure. This will make the experience very different from anyone else’s making it much harder to compare.
Experiences connect us with others and build relationships.
More often than not adventures are experienced in a group of like-minded people. This allows us to connect with others who enjoy the same activity.
It also provides an opportunity to meet new people, to make new friends, and in general connect with people we would likely not be around.
On the other hand, it can also provide an opportunity to get even closer to those we love and care about and share this special experience with them. Doing so allows us to get to know each other on a deeper level and strengthen the relationship.
Experiences give us something to look forward to.
The journey should be as much fun (if not more) as the destination. The same applies to experiences. Many times it is just as much fun to plan for an experience and to look forward to it with anticipation as it is to participate in the experience itself.
Experiences give us great memories.
Experiences provide opportunities for making great memories with those we meet on our adventure and with those whom we love and care about. They give us something to cherish and reminisce about later on in life.
Experiences bring us more happiness than material things.
According to Dr. Gilovitch from Cornwall University material things do not bring us as much happiness as experiences. Material things are separate from us. They can be taken away from us. Where as our experiences are a part of our being and can never be taken away from us. Because of that they provide us with deeper and longer lasting happiness.
Experiences help us live in the moment.
While on adventure with your loved ones or your friends, you are more likely to be living in the present moment. Experiences invigorate us and make us feel more alive. The ‘YOLO moments’ perspective often helps us focus on the moment and enjoy it while it lasts.
Experiences help us avoid clutter.
This makes me think about all the thoughtful and beautiful, but not very useful gifts that we sometimes get that take up space and collect dust on our shelves. We don’t want to get rid of them, because we don’t want to hurt the feelings of those who gifted them to us. When you provide people with experiences, you are avoiding adding to their clutter of stuff that will soon be collecting dust on their shelves and adding to the pile of ‘stuff’.
So if you are considering a gift and want it to be a special and a memorable one, consider giving a gift of a special experience.