Material purchases can bring as much happiness as experiential ones, but in time-release form.
The finding is fascinating because until now studies have suggested that experiential purchases are superior.
Experiential purchases include things like holidays, concert tickets or visits to a spa.
Material purchases, though, can provide just as much pleasure in the long-run, the new research suggests.
For the study, people were asked to keep track of their levels of happiness five times a day over two weeks.
The study compared the effects of material purchases, like portable speakers and coffee makers, with experiential purchases, like tickets to a hockey game or a weekend ski trip.
The results showed that experiential purchases provided short intense bursts of pleasure which tended to fade away.
In contrast, material purchases brought repeated smaller doses of happiness over the weeks.
However, when people looked back at their purchases six weeks later, it was the experiences that gave them more satisfaction.
So, perhaps experiences still have the edge.
Mr Aaron Weidman, the study’s first author, said:
“The decision of whether to buy a material thing or a life experience may therefore boil down to what kind of happiness one desires.
Consider a holiday shopper deciding between tickets to a concert or a new couch in the living room.
The concert will provide an intense thrill for one spectacular night, but then it will end, and will no longer provide momentary happiness, aside from being a happy memory.
In contrast, the new couch will never provide a thrilling moment to match the concert, but will keep the owner snug and comfortable each day throughout the winter months.”
The study was published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science (Weidman & Dunn, 2015).
Still Looking for a last-minute gift? How about THE CASE OF THE DEFUNCT ADJUNCT ?
Pepe, aspiring P.I. Geri Sullivan’s muy clever Chihuahua, has stopped talking. But why now, with Geri’s best friend Brad missing and her ditzy sister in grave danger? Geri’s lost without Pepe’s dogged detective work, especially when a client of Brad’s expires under very murky circumstances.
Luckily, Pepe turns out to be an excelente blogger, and his nose for clues soon has the detective duo chasing down leads. But they’ll have to put a bite on crime quickly, because danger’s afoot – and it’s making tracks in their direction . . .
Waverly Curtis is the joint pseudonym for mystery writing team Waverly Fitzgerald and Curtis Colbert.
Curt Colbert is the author of the Jake Rossiter and Miss Jenkins mysteries, a series of hardboiled, private detective novels set in 1940’s Seattle. The first book, Rat City, was nominated for a Shamus Award in 2001. A Seattle native, Curt is also a poet and an avid history buff. He is the editor of Seattle Noir, a collection of crime stories published in 2009. He was a judge for the Edgars in 2008 and is a member of the Mystery Writers of America. Curt and his wife, Stephanie, live in a Seattle suburb under the thrall of their cat, Esmeralda.
Waverly Fitzgerald is the author of three historical romances set in Victorian London under the name of Nancy Fitzgerald. Ever since her first novel was published in 1981, she has been teaching writing classes for adults at various venues including the UCLA Writers Program, the University of Washington Extension, and regional conferences. She currently teaches at and works for Richard Hugo House, the literary arts center in Seattle. Waverly also writes non-fiction, and has published a book called Slow Time: Recovering theNatural Rhythms of Life. She lives in an apartment in the heart of Seattle with her daughter, Shaw, and Shaw’s Chihuahua, Pepe.
Waverly and Curt met in a writing class in the late 1980s and have been working together ever since. Curt took Waverly’s novel writing class while he was writing his first novel. Waverly was his writing coach while he wrote his trio of historical mysteries set in Seattle. For about a year, they worked on twin novels in which Waverly’s protagonist, a female P.I. appeared as a sidekick in Curt’s novel about a hard-boiled Vietnam vet and vice versa. When Curt came up with the idea of a mystery featuring a talking Chihuahuanamed Pepe, Waverly asked if she could help and the collaboration began.
Pepe is an eight-year old Chihuahua, adopted by Waverly’s daughter Shaw when he was a puppy. He likes stuffed toys, especially if they squeak. He hatesthe rain, which is unfortunate since he lives in Seattle. Like his namesake character, he hates being dressed up and thinks he is much bigger than he is. Unlike his namesake, he has a sweet disposition and doesn’t talk much, but he does have his own Facebook page.
Quieres a good campus murder mystery? Get THE CASE OF THE DEFUNCT ADJUNCT
A forbidden kiss. A death in plain sight. And the faculty meeting’s just begun.
Forced to attend the Student Retention Office’s summer retreat, Professor Molly Barda brings her game of buzzword bingo to fend off boredom. But when the lecherous Kent Lovely, Mahina State’s one-man hostile work environment, collapses face-first into his haupia cheesecake, the afternoon goes from dull to disastrous. Now Molly has to fight to keep an innocent out of prison—and herself off the unemployment line.
The Case of the Defunct Adjunct is the spoiler-free prequel to the Molly Barda mysteries, a cozy mystery series set in remote Mahina, Hawaii. If you like Dorothy Parker, Sarah Caudwell, P.G. Wodehouse, or E.F. Benson’s Mapp and Lucia stories, you’ll enjoy this tale of passion, pilferage, and petty politics. Preorder it now, and start reading on December 1.
The adventures of Alice Mongoose and her best friend, the gentle and dapper Alistair Rat, will be coming out later this year in e-book format. Stay tuned! #TwoLittleHousesinaCaneField #Friendship
Alice Mongoose and Alistair Rat are back! A new generation of children in Hawaii and beyond will be able to enjoy the gentle humor, practical life lessons, and charming illustrations of Mary Pfaff, known in her day as “the Beatrix Potter of Hawaii.”
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