UNITED STATES─I have wanted to have this conversation for quite some time now America. We live in a world where you have two types of people: spenders and savers. Being one or the other is not a bad thing, but it raises an important question for me: does having materialistic things bring more vibrancy to your life or does a life experience? I will be the first to admit, while I was younger having certain things meant so much more to me, but now that I’m older the focus has completely shifted to doing things more often.

I think as you age, you become a bit wiser and it becomes clear that while you might love the thing you just purchased, it’s just that: a thing. The happiness is short-lived when you spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars on a gadget, piece of clothing, vehicle or something that can be easily taken from you. Let me give you a perfect example, my closet is packed with clothing and I mean packed. At times it feels like the closet has so much in it, that I don’t understand why I keep on buying.

It might be the fact that I got a great deal, had gift cards to spend, coupons I didn’t want to go to waste? They’re all logical reasons people, but at the same time do I really need the clothing? It’s just sitting in my closet, sitting on a hanger or in a bag waiting to be worn. Tags still on and all, think about that for a second. That’s money that could be used for a bill, to save or to purchase something that I actually need. I’d make an exception to purchasing an expensive item if you’re getting it at a major discount because let’s say the retailer is going out of business.

Before reaching my 30s, I was not the biggest fan of spending money on experiences like going out to eat, going on vacation with family, traveling, doing something never done before, the list goes on. That has changed for me because while spending money to travel can be somewhat costly, the memories that are created from it, is forever people. I mean a trip to Las Vegas, a 2-day trip to Chicago to feast on some of the best cuisine you’ve ever had, a trip to Disneyland, a cruise throughout the beautiful waters of the Atlantic or Pacific Ocean, traveling overseas, picking up a new hobby. Do you see where I’m going with this America?

The opportunities to spend money on things that bring you an inner peace or allow you to explore the world and your talents can be more fulfilling than you could ever imagine. The thing about traveling is that you can always catch a great deal if you’re looking. When you see that deal, snap it up and start planning that trip with family and friends. Look at a life experience this way, you have a memory that will live forever, versus an item that you just purchased that you love, but at the end of the day it’s just an item.

There isn’t that much you can do with it, besides wear it and show it off. Does that bring you any happiness? Does it make your day better? Yeah, if you can’t answer that question that says it all: materialistic things are just that materialistic things. With life experiences, they last a lifetime.